Seized placenta to be used in South Dakota rape case

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RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — A placenta sample taken from an abortion clinic without a warrant will be used as evidence in a statutory rape trial in South Dakota.

The Rapid City Journal reports the South Dakota Supreme Court said last month that it would not hear the case, clearing the way for the evidence to be used.

A Rapid City girl mentioned while getting an abortion in Denver in 2018 that she was 15 when she became pregnant by her 25-year-old boyfriend. The clinic told Denver police, who turned over a placenta sample to a Rapid City detective.

DNA testing showed that the boyfriend, Nathan Hankins, couldn't be excluded as the father. He was charged in September with fourth-degree rape.

Hankins has pleaded not guilty and is scheduled for trial on Jan. 28.

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