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Monday, November 28, 2022

Police suspect arson at Wyoming abortion clinic site

CASPER, Wyo ( Associated Press) — An abortion clinic opening next month in conservative Wyoming was damaged in a fire early Wednesday that police believe was set intentionally — possibly with someone fleeing the building. Was seen which looked like a can of gas. And a bag.

The fire damaged the interior of the building, which houses the clinic in Casper, the second largest city in the state where protests against abortion are widespread.

Police said in a Facebook post that a person calling officers earlier in the morning saw someone running away from the building with a gas can and a black bag. Police said investigators were reviewing video footage from the area in hopes of identifying the suspect or generating suspicious details. No one was reported to be injured.

Clinic director Julie Burkhart said clinic organizers were receiving disturbing emails and telephone messages. He said the building had video cameras which were working and the police had been given access to them.

Protests have been held this spring by abortion opponents at the Future Clinic site, and signs opposing abortion were visible in the window of an apartment next to the building on Wednesday.

Wyoming is one of 13 US states with a so-called trigger law that would immediately outlaw abortion if Roe v. Wade’s decision legalized it nationwide, it was overturned by the US Supreme Court. A leaked draft of a ruling suggests it will happen soon.

Police temporarily closed the street where the small building is located as officers investigated. Several windows in the building were broken, and smoke damage was visible around one broken window.

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