On Wednesday, February 12, at 7:30 a.m., two days after his acquittal of mischief, Father Ted Colleton, 72, tried to lock the gates at Morgentaler’s Toronto abortuary. Father Ted, a member of the editorial board of The Interim, was thwarted in his attempt by four burly policemen who prevented him from reaching the gates but did not lay charges. Father Colleton rebuked the police for “guarding an illegal establishment and allowing a killing machine to continue.”
The Metropolitan Toronto Police Inspector in charge of providing protection at the abortuary was informed the day before that a clergyman would attempt to lock the gate that morning. According to a spokesman for the clergyman, the reason the police were informed was to offer the police an opportunity to provide the same protection to those who would uphold the law as they were now providing to those breaking the law. However, policy action that Wednesday was clearly designed to protect the abortionist.
Earlier that morning, at 6:30 a.m., a police car was seen parked directly in front of the gate of the abortuary making it impossible to approach the gate.
Shortly after 7:00 a.m., the abortuary workers arrived (they usually don’t come in until 9:00). Soon after that, Father Ted arrived next door at The Way Inn (a pro-life center next to the abortuary) where prayers were said before he left to attempt to lock the gate.
Just before Father Ted arrived at the gate, a policeman was seen talking to abortuary workers and, at the same time, the police car moved away from the back gate. When Father Ted appeared, two policemen jumped from their cars and confiscated his lock. Two more joined them and stood in his way while an abortionist and an abortuary worker came out, opened the large metal gates and locked them open wide on each side.
The attempt was witnessed by some two dozen pro-life workers and also reporters and cameramen from the Toronto dailies and radio and TV stations.
A press conference was held afterwards at The Way Inn. Reverend Ken Campbell, who runs “Choose Life” from the Way Inn, said it’s the “Philippine” politics of Attorney General Scott that is blocking the arrest of Morgentaler. Also present was Reverend Fred Vaughan, the Baptist minister who was acquitted earlier with Fathers Colleton and de Valk.
Father Colleton said there is a commandment that “thou shall not kill, but there is no commandment that thou shall not lock a gate.” He said that while Morgentaler has appealed the reversal of his jury acquitted by the Ontario Court of Appeal, he is being allowed to continue operating the illegal clinic. He accused Attorney General Scott of being “prejudiced and biased in the application of the law.”