PITTSBURGH (AP) — Charges were dropped Friday against a woman accused of forcing her friend’s 12-year-old daughter to get a birth control implant without the mother’s permission.
Online court documents show two felony counts of endangering the welfare of children and a misdemeanor charge of recklessly endangering another person were withdrawn against 29-year-old Valerie Fullum.
Fullum’s attorney, Steve Townsend, said that the girl was never forced to get the implant, and that story was fabricated by others who wanted to discredit his client.
Fullum lost her job during the ordeal and although she feels vindicated, she must now work on mending her reputation, he said.
“She wants to let everyone know she is not this villain that she was portrayed to be initially, and she just wants to move forward,” he said.
Mike Manko, a spokesman with the Allegheny County district attorney’s office, said he couldn’t offer any details about why the charges were dropped.
“We withdrew because in the course of continuing the investigation, we can across an evidentiary issue that we could not overcome,” he said.
The 12-year-old’s mother told a local TV station in May that her daughter didn’t tell her about the device for a month. She said her daughter felt forced and threatened by Fullum and alleged the device, implanted in April, harmed the girl’s health. She had the device removed.
In Pennsylvania, clinicians may provide birth control and contraception to minors without informing or obtaining consent of a parent or guardian.