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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – A Madison County man is suing Alabama Women’s Center for Reproductive Alternatives, LLC. for providing an abortion to a woman who he says was pregnant with his baby.

Brent Helms, the attorney for both Ryan Magers, who claims to be the father, and ‘Baby Roe,’ the unborn fetus, said Magers did not want the woman to have an abortion. Helms said Magers was seeking legal counsel at the time of the abortion.

Helms also petitioned to represent the estate of Baby Roe.  Helms says with estate, the fetus has the right to sue under probate law in Alabama. Probate Judge Frank Barger signed off on the letter of petition allowing the reported father to represent Baby Roe’s estate.

Helms said Barger’s decision marks the first time in  the U.S. that an aborted fetus is recognized to have legal rights.

But it’s not clear if Barger knew what he was granting.

In the letter of petition filed on January 25, 2019, Baby Roe is not specifically referred to as a ‘fetus.’ WHNT News 19 reached out to Barger to ask if he knew he was signing off on rights for an unborn fetus, but he refused to comment.

According to the letter of petition which asks for rights to the fetus’ estate, the petition says Baby Roe died Feb. 12, 2017, it doesn’t refer to cause of death or location.

The petition acknowledges the fetus did not leave behind a will, spouse, or real property, who under the law, could have claims on the estate.

The lawsuit claims the fetus was aborted on February 12, 2017 at the Huntsville abortion clinic.  Court documents said at the time of the abortion, the fetus was six weeks old. And, the mother took a pill that ended the pregnancy.

According to court documents, Magers’ girlfriend found out she was pregnant in 2017. Magers said he wanted to keep the baby but the mother wanted an abortion, the lawsuit claims.

The records allege the mother made an appointment with the clinic. In between the time Magers found out about the pregnancy and the appointment, Magers said he pleaded with the woman not to terminate the pregnancy.

Magers is seeking a jury trial.