Julia Ann Peters

On September 9, 1997, Julia Anne Peters died at Mary Washington Hospital in Richmond, Virginia. The 30-year-old woman gave birth to her fourth child on September 8, 1997 at her home. Although the baby, Alexis Marie, was healthy, Peters suffered complications about 10 hours after delivery, when she suddenly complained turned pale and began gasping for breath, according to her husband and mother-in-law. She had had three previous cesareans before giving birth vaginally.

Peters' mother-in-law, a registered nurse, had been with her continuously following the birth. She and the midwife who attended the birth believe that Peters' death was probably due to amniotic fluid embolism. However, the medical examiner who performed the autopsy stated that the cause of death was postpartum hemorrhage due to uterine atony. Peters' hematocrit was found to be 22 percent.