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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Explosive detonates outside Alabama attorney general’s office



Medications for in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments used by a woman in Alabama, Feb. 22, 2024. An explosion in front of the state attorney general’s office in Montgomery was set off one day after Steve Marshall, Alabama’s attorney general, announced that he did not plan to prosecute IVF providers or families seeking treatment after a recent Alabama Supreme Court ruling that frozen embryos are legally considered children. (Wes Frazer/The New York Times)

By Livia Albeck-Ripka


An explosive device was detonated early Saturday outside the Alabama attorney general’s office in downtown Montgomery, Steve Marshall, the attorney general, said in a statement Monday.


The explosion, which Marshall said had not injured anyone, was set off one day after he announced that he did not plan to prosecute IVF providers or families seeking treatment after a recent Alabama Supreme Court ruling that frozen embryos are legally considered children.


The statement did not say whether the explosion had caused any damage, whether the motive for the act was known or whether there were any suspects.


A spokesperson with the attorney general’s office said Monday that she could not provide any information beyond the statement, and directed further questions to the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.


The agency, which is investigating the explosion, said it received a report Monday morning about a suspicious package near the intersection of Washington Avenue and South Bainbridge Street in Montgomery.


“It was determined that the suspicious package was an explosive device that was detonated in the early morning hours of Saturday, Feb. 24,” the agency said in a statement Monday evening. “Nothing further is available as the investigation remains ongoing.”


The Alabama Supreme Court ruling — which was issued earlier this month in appeals cases brought by couples whose embryos were destroyed at a fertility clinic in Mobile — has shaken the world of reproductive medicine, casting doubt over fertility care for would-be parents in Alabama and raising complex legal questions. It has also led some clinics in the state to halt IVF treatments and has left many women in limbo.


On Friday, the attorney general’s office moved to ease some of those anxieties. Marshall “has no intention of using the recent Alabama Supreme Court decision as a basis for prosecuting IVF families or providers,” Katherine Robertson, the office’s chief counsel, said in a statement.


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