Bei Bei Shuai has been in prison for over 8 months, charged with “feticide” for delivering a premature baby that died days later after the mother ingested rat poison in a suicide attempt. Now the Indiana Court of Appeals has stated it will hear her case asking for release on bail.
Shuai was denied both a dismissal of her case, as well as a previous request to be released on bail back in August, despite roughly 80 “friend of the court” briefings asking that she be released. Numerous advocates rallied for the Indiana woman, stating that those who try to commit suicide need assistance, not to be put in jail.
Shuai, who had taken poison after an emotional breakup, said she was trying to kill herself, but when she told her friends what she had done, they convinced her to go to the hospital instead. Once there, she gave birth to her daughter prematurely, and the baby was put on life support. On January 3rd, 2011, “Angel” died.
Suicide protection activists, as well as Shuai’s lawyer, have expressed concern that keeping Shuai in jail and finding her guilty of murder could set a precedent that will cause other mother’s who try to hurt themselves to refuse to seek help, afraid of similar actions. Allowing bail, at least, would be a step in the right direction. However, prosecution says that bail is nearly always denied in murder cases.
Want to get involved? Sign the petition below to ask the state to release Shuai.
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