Detroit Man Sentenced for Women's Health Clinic Arson

Associated Press/June 30, 2007

David McMenemy, 46, was sentenced Friday to 5 years in prison for attempting to burn down a Davenport, Iowa women's health clinic on September 11, 2006. McMenemy, a Detroit native, crashed his car into a building that he believed to be an abortion clinic and lit a bottle filled with gasoline before surrendering to firefighters. The Edgerton Women's Health Care Center does not perform or make referrals for abortions, but provides prenatal care and medical services to low-income and underprivileged women, according to clinic officials.

During the sentencing, McMenemy admitted wrongdoing, telling US District Judge John Javery, "It was wrong. Even if it was an abortion clinic, it would still be wrong." He then added that he planned to distance himself from any anti-abortion organizations in the future.

The judge ordered him to pay $263,252 in damages to the clinic and also to be treated for mental health and substance-abuse.

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