Planned Parenthood volunteer bumps pro-lifer, then arrests him

Two citizens’ arrests in San Mateo
Ross Foti

Ross Foti

The following comes from a February 5 story in the San Mateo Daily Journal.

Abortion foe Ross Foti claims he was assaulted by a volunteer escort at the Planned Parenthood clinic in San Mateo yesterday morning as he was passing out leaflets to a patient.

Since police, however, did not witness the incident at the Baywood Avenue clinic, Foti called on the powers of citizen’s arrest to have the volunteer cited.

The volunteer then returned the favor and had Foti cited using the same powers of citizen’s arrest.

The infractions are likely misdemeanors and police are not sure yet how the cases will unfold or whether either party will ultimately be charged by the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.

“It’s an ongoing investigation,” a San Mateo police official told the Daily Journal yesterday.

Foti, famous for driving a vehicle with posters of aborted fetuses prominently displayed on the sides, is a regular protester at the clinic with an intent to deter women from getting abortions.

He’s been successfully battling Planned Parenthood since 1992 in court for his right to display his signs and picket in front of clinics all over the Bay Area.

Yesterday morning, he handed a leaflet to a woman in her car when the volunteer approached him and allegedly bumped into him, Foti told the Daily Journal.

“She rammed me in the chest and I have a witness,” said Foti, whose niece was also on the scene.

Foti, 79, then called the San Mateo Police Department to report the incident.

Foti’s insistence that the woman be arrested for assault, however, ended up getting him arrested, too.

He is not sure what he was arrested for, though.

“I have a long piece of paper saying I was arrested and released into my own recognizance but it doesn’t say what I’m arrested for,” Foti said. “Who is her witness?”

Video from a nearby surveillance camera should confirm the story, Foti said.

“If I would have assaulted her, I would have been arrested, case closed,” he said.

Foti’s been picketing at the clinic since it opened and was hit with four infractions last March by San Mateo police for displaying signs in violation of municipal code while he protested outside the clinic.

He was hit with similar infractions in late 2011 for the same offenses — displaying signs too big, too close together and on public property.

Planned Parenthood relies on volunteer clinic volunteers to help get patients to the door with as little harassment as possible.

Foti, a Belmont resident, is no stranger to the courts, as he has fought for years to maintain his First Amendment rights to free speech.

“I don’t want trouble. I just want to exercise my First Amendment rights,” he said.

So ardent in his beliefs, the devoted Catholic was even once banned from attending mass at St. Matthew Catholic Church in San Mateo for refusing to cover the signs on the large truck he uses to demonstrate.

Officials at the Baywood clinic could not be reached for comment yesterday.

To read original story, click here.

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  1. More power to Foti!!!

  2. Hooray for Mr. Foti! As a peaceful presence outside of Planned Parenthood’s San Mateo Business, I can attest to “PP Escorts” as being aggressive and unpleasant around us. These “escorts” are all helpful and protective of the women as they usher them in — but they are no where around when these broken souls come out — but we are with post abortive support. Mr. Foti is a hero to all the babies that have been saved because of his unflagging and faithful presence outside of abortion mills.

    Sidenote: The PP in question has just finished construction on a surgical unit and will begin surgical abortions soon. The destruction of babies and the ruin of souls will continue unless more faithful Christians stand up like Mr. Foti and say “not one more soul will die on my watch”.

  3. how can you be ‘banned’ from attending Mass, a ‘no tresspassing’ order from a judge? Why on earth would some pastor ban this guy? unbelievable….

  4. The reason he was banned from St. Matthew’s Church was all over the local papers — he parked each day where little kids who were arriving for school at St. Matthew’s saw huge, disgusting, frightening pictures of mutilated and murdered children on his posters.

    Thanks to good old Ross, the little ones arriving for (Catholic) school got THIS delightful image each morning. When the parents tried to assure him they were just as pro-life as he, but didn’t want their children traumatized by his gross images each morning, he wasn’t interested.

    People like this give the pro-life movement a bad name — they seem concerned about the children in the womb (a good thing), but unconcerned about the children out of the womb (a bad thing).

  5. Number one: How could he have assaulted this ‘escort’ when we ARE NOT allowed on their property, period. And I am sure Ross is aware and knows that big time! So how did he come to be in the same general area as the ‘escort’? She would of HAD TO COME OUT TO THE SIDEWALK!!!!!

    And as Ross said, check the cameras, which we know Planned Parenthood has on all the time!!!


  6. Planned Parenthood is getting scared and is resorting to “dirty tricks.” As Fr Frank says, “you can’t practice vice virtuously.”

    They have to protect their business. They stand to lose a lot of money – our taxes – if we can prevent mothers from entering the building by telling them the truth about abortion. They have prepared the “death chambers” where they will suction the babies from their mothers’ wombs and will be performing surgical abortions any day now – hence the heavies – sorry, “escorts”. For all who care about life and God’s most vulnerable children, please join us at the 40 Days For Life campaign at 35 Baywood Ave. Starts Ash Wednesday.

  7. to steve: I also was banned from attending Mass in my parish church and here’s why. On one particular day the Cardinal of Boston announced that he was asking all the parishes in his diocese to hold a Pro-Life vigil. I was delighted. I went to my parish church on that day and discovered that there was no Pro-Life vigil or any other Pro-Life activity going on in my church on that day. I wrote to the Cardinal and asked him, “Why didn’t my church have a pro-Life vigil on that day? The Catholic newspaper said that you had asked all the parishes in your diocese to do that. Aren’t they supposed to do that? When I was in the working world and the boss announced that he wanted all his staff to do something we all hopped right up and did it! We didn’t want to lose our jobs. Is the the priest in my parish going to lose his job! I think he should.” I received a letter from the diocese telling me that I must not attend that church any more and the letter sent a copy to the Norwood Police Department asking them to take notice. I have been stopped by police six times for trying to attend Mass at that church, The police even threatened me with “lock-up” if they found me on church property.

    • Kenneth M. Fisher says:


      Find a good orthodox Canon Lawyer and bury them!

      Cardinal O’Malley speaks out of both sides of his mouth! Pray for him.

      God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
      Kenneth M. Fisher

      • Disagree. Tom, don’t go “burying” anyone. Anyone who provokes you and tells you to go to war with Bishops or Cardinals or the Church is trying to lead you down the wrong path. Instead offer it up. Obey. God will use you as He sees fit…it his His Kingdom after all, not ours. Humility if the key. God will see what others can not.

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