DNA test reveals fertility doctor's dark secret, lawsuit alleges

DNA test reveals fertility doctor's dark secret, lawsuit alleges

DNA test reveals fertility doctor's dark secret, lawsuit alleges

It was only afterward that Rowlette learned how, in 1979, her parents sought fertility treatment from Mortimer.

The results showed Rowlette's biological father was not the man she'd always known, but a stranger named Gerald Mortimer - a man she later found out had been her parents' fertility doctor and had impregnated her mother with his own sperm without her mother's knowledge or consent. Mortimer said Rowlette's mother, Sally Ashby, had a tipped uterus, and diagnosed Ashby's husband, Howard Fowler, with a low sperm count and low sperm motility. When the Ancestry.com DNA test revealed that Rowlette's father was Ashby's fertility doctor, Dr. Gerald E. Mortimer, the family was stunned. Rowlette said at first she thought there was an error, but then she discovered her birth certificate had been signed by none other than Dr. Mortimer.

In 1980, Ashby and Fowler made a decision to resort to artificial insemination, using a combination of Fowler's sperm and that of an unknown person who supposedly matched their requested traits.

Ms. Rowlette and her family are suing Mortimer, his wife, and Obstetrics and Gynecology Associates of Idaho Falls on claims of medical negligence, fraud, battery, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and breach of contract, Gizmodo writes.

That was the case for Washington state's Kelli Rowlette (née Fowler), who took a DNA test with the popular site Ancestry.com back in July 2017.

The lawsuit also states Mortimer "cried" when the mother informed him they were moving from Idaho to Washington state.

The lawsuit says they "struggled to cope with their own anguish, and had difficulty contemplating the torment the discovery would cause their daughter when and if she found out".

Kelli Rowlette and her parents are represented by Shea Meehan of Walker, Hey, Meehan and Eisinger in the fertility fraud case, reports Courthouse News. The donor sperm had to come from a college student who looked like Fowler with brown hair, blue eyes and over 6 feet tall.


The doctor's recommendation was the couple undergo a procedure where donor semen would be mixed with Fowler's semen to increase the chance of conception. They had attended Dr Mortimer's former Idaho Falls clinic for IUI (artificial insemination) during the early 1980s.

Ms Rowlette was born in May 1981.

Efforts to reach the now-retired Mortimer for comment were unsuccessful, and the Mortimers have not listed a defense attorney with the Clerk of Courts.

"However with this, people may learn of unexpected connections".

We knew that Dr. Mortimer worked in Idaho Falls in southeast Idaho as an OB/GYN.

"With Ancestry, customers maintain ownership and control over their DNA data", the statement continued.

She initially believed the results were flawed and was "disappointed" with them, according to the complaint.

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