Peaceful pro-life activist Merle Terlesky

accused of uttering threats

He used to be a militant pro-abortion activist, but Merle Terlesky, who switched to the pro-life side of the abortion conflict a few years ago, has now been arrested for protesting against abortion in Vancouver.

The Kamloops Daily News reported that Mr. Terlesky was arrested and jailed Feb. 23 while attending a pro-life meeting. The arrest stemmed from a warrant issued Feb. 1 and based on alleged violations of the province’s bubble-zone legislation as it pertains to Vancouver’s Everywoman’s Health Centre.

Mr. Terlesky is being charged with violating the bubble zone law and for uttering threats against abortuary workers, an allegation which he vigorously denies. “I categorically deny making threats to clinic staff or patients or anyone within the vicinity of the clinic,” he told the Kamloops paper. He was released from jail after agreeing to comply with the orders of his release.

John Hof, president of Campaign Life Coalition British Columbia, says he is looking into Mr. Terlesky’s arrest. He condemned the bubble zone law, which bans abortion protest within 50 metres of the entrance of Everywoman’s. Pro-life protesters do not have the same freedoms as other British Columbians when it comes to taking a stand against something they don’t believe in, he pointed out.

“You can protest APEC, the World Trade Organization and all these others things, but you can’t pray about abortion in a bubble zone. It’s insane,” he said.

Another pro-lifer harassed

Meanwhile, in Vancouver, pro-life activist Cecilia Von Dehn was harassed recently while handing out brochures outside the bubble zone at the Everywoman’s Health Centre abortuary. Her house sits directly next to the abortuary. A police officer who came by suggested she was “high on cocaine” and told her she was under arrest. However, he walked away without taking her into custody.