Five women’s healthcare clinics, at least four of which provide abortion services, were the victims of acid attacks today.
Four clinics reported that they had been attacked this morning, and news of a fifth incident at a Miami Clinic was recently released. Today’s attacks were very similar to attacks waged on clinics in Central Florida this past weekend.
In this past weekend’s attacks, vandals bored holes into the clinic’s window frames and then poured or sprayed butyric acid into the clinics. In at least one of today’s attacks, butyric acid was poured into a mail slot.
Two people were sent to a nearby emergency room for treatment of respiratory problems and another person was treated for minor injuries at the scene. A bomb squad was called to neutralize approximately 1/2 gallon of butyric acid at one of the clinics. Delrish Moss of the Miami Police Department said that butyric acid creates fumes and could cause damage to the respiratory systems of those in or around the clinics.
Officials were concerned that children at a nearby daycare center might be especially susceptible to the fumes, and blocked off the entrance to that building.
Abortion opponents had recently held protests at the affected clinics. Detectives believe that anger over Florida Gov. Lawton Chiles’ veto of a proposed anti-abortion license plate may have spurred the attacks.
A suspect described as a “medium build” man was seen throwing a package into at least one of the clinics’ front doors.