Woman Allegedly Given Abortion Pills Disguised As Iron Supplements By Ex

A Massachusetts man was charged Tuesday after being accused of trickinga pregnant woman he had dated into taking abortion pills that he disguised as an iron supplement and vitamins, Watertown police announced.

Robert Kawada, 43, of Brookline, pleaded not guilty to several charges, including poisoning and battery with a dangerous weapon on a pregnant person. Authorities allege he secretly gave his ex-girlfriend pills that were intended to end her pregnancy, including misoprostol, according to the announcement.

Misoprostol is usually combined with another drug, mifepristone, to help pregnant people safely induce an abortion before the 16th week of pregnancy. It can also be used on its own to end a pregnancy.

According to a probable cause statement cited by NBC affiliate WBTS in Boston, Kawada and the woman, whose name has not been made public, met on a dating app in January and went on a few dates before they ended the relationship in March.

A patient prepares to take the first of a two-pill combination for abortion. Prosecutors allege a Massachusetts man gave an ex-girlfriend abortion pills, saying they were supplements.
A patient prepares to take the first of a two-pill combination for abortion. Prosecutors allege a Massachusetts man gave an ex-girlfriend abortion pills, saying they were supplements. Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

The woman later discovered she was pregnant, and the two met several more times over six weeks, WBTS reported.

During these meetings, “Kawada would provide assurances,” citing his experience with his ex-wife’s pregnancy and saying that his father was an OB-GYN, according to a police report cited by WCVB-TV in Boston.

But Kawada allegedly attempted to terminate the pregnancy by giving her homemade cookies made with raspberry leaf, which could induce contractions. The National Library of Medicine says research on its ability to end a pregnancy is “under-developed” and “weak.”

The victim allegedly was also given pills disguised as prenatal supplements, WCVB reported.

Speaking at Kawada’s arraignment on Tuesday, prosecutor Jacob McCrindle alleged he “instructed the victim how to take those pills in a particular manner,” similar to the way abortion medication is prescribed, WHDH-TV in Boston reported. 

McCrindle also said the woman received calls from someone who claimed to be a nurse from her doctor’s office, and the woman on the phone told her to take the pills she’d gotten from Kawada, according to WHDH.

At their last meeting, Kawada allegedly said he wanted her to get an abortion, claiming that the recent death of his mother was somehow related to her anger over the pregnancy, according to WBTS. But the woman maintained she wanted to keep and raise the baby without Kawada’s involvement.

The woman later experienced severe cramps and some bleeding, which medical staff confirmed to have been a miscarriage, WBTS reported. She reportedly attempted to call the person who had claimed to be a nurse but then found out she was not from her doctor’s office and it had been a ruse.

When she told her family what had happened, they called police thenext day, on May 2, WBTS reported.

The woman reportedly gave detectives a pill she said she’d saved from the trash can and gave them Kawada’s information, according to WBTS.

During an interview with police, Kawada allegedly stated that he gave the woman vitamin C and iron supplements he’d ordered from Amazon, WBTS reported, but information collected from his phone indicated he’d called an online pharmacy that sells misoprostol.

Dmitry Lev, Kawada’s defense attorney, told WHDH that he and his client “look forward to a full and complete investigation of the case and a fair jury trial.”

Need help? In the U.S., call 1-866-331-9474 or text “loveis” to 22522 for the National Dating Abuse Helpline.