Judge Charlie Baird was accused to providing judicial support to enforced sterilization when he told Felicia Salazar she couldn’t have anymore children as part of her probation last year. This year he’s singing a different tune.
Felicia Salazar walked into a Texas courtroom with her two-month-old baby, just ten months after being ordered by Baird not to procreate. So what did the judge say?
“She’s remarried,” and “She seemed to be doing well.”
So Salazar isn’t going to jail. She’s still on probation, though, for not stepping in when boyfriend Roberto Alvarado, 25, beat the couple’s then-19-month-old daughter last year (he’s been sentenced to 15 years in prison for the beating). When it was over, she failed to seek medical help for the little girl. Both parents’ rights to their daughter were severed as part of court proceedings.
Salazar’s sentence was debated by legal authorities for its constitutionality and interference with a woman’s right to her own body. On Baird’s side was a Wisconsin case in which a man was also told he could not impregnate a woman as part of his probation.
But based on the math, Salazar was likely pregnant when Baird handed down the ruling (although only just). So it’s hard to say whether she actually violated an order here – he told her not to get pregnant, but he never said anything about not remaining pregnant (a government forced abortion would naturally have created an ever larger outcry . . . and rightfully so).
Interestingly, Charlie Baird is now up for re-election. Wonder what role that played in his decision to go easy on Salazar.
Image: Austin Statesman