Black Baby Is Born To White Parents In A Fertility Clinic Mix-Up



I am posting this because I think it is horrendous that a couple would sue when thay have a perfectly healthy, beautiful daughter just because of a fertility clinic mix-up that nothing can be done about now. They should count their blessings and get over it! I mean, what else can they do!?
Should a couple be entitled to sue because a fertility clinic mistakenly impregnated the woman with sperm other than her mate’s?

A Park Avenue fertility clinic’s blunder has left a family devastated – after a black baby was born to a Hispanic woman and her white husband, the couple charges in a lawsuit.

The mistake, made during in-vitro conception, wasn’t discovered until Jessica Andrews was born – and it became clear she didn’t look anything like her mom, Nancy, or dad, Thomas, the suit says.

The baby’s complexion was much darker than that of her mom – a light-skinned native of the Dominican Republic – or dad.

“Jessica doesn’t look like them,” said the couple’s attorney Howard Stern, of Long Island.

When Thomas and Nancy Andrews asked their doctor, Manhattan obstetrician Martin Keltz, what was going on, he allegedly told them that Jessica’s condition was an “abnormality,” and assured them she would “get lighter over time,” according to the couple’s suit, filed in Manhattan Supreme Court.

But they found out the truth when DNA tests proved that Jessica – born in October 2004 – was not conceived with Thomas’ sperm.

“Three DNA test were taken, and each one excluded the father,” Stern said.

The tests showed that Nancy Andrews is the mother – her egg was used, but with the wrong sperm.

The family is so distraught that they have not even told many of their relatives about the situation. The Andrews fear the natural father may try to come forward and claim rights to the girl, the suit says.

“Jessica will never know or be able to determine the identity of her actual father, and will consequently never be able to know her full medical history and condition,” the suit also claims.

They also fear that that the unnamed African-American donor’s sperm may have been used to dupe other couples, or that another couple may have gotten Thomas Andrews’ sperm.

“There is continuing uncertainty . . . as to whether the genetic material of either or both of them has been inappropriately used for others and that they may have natural children or half-children that they are unaware of,” the suit said.

Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam ruled this week that the Andrews’ emotional distress suit can go to trial against the fertility clinic – New York Medical Services for Reproductive Medicine, headed by Dr. Reginald Puckett – and the embryologist who allegedly mixed up the samples, Carlo Acosta.

The judge dismissed claims against Keltz because he had no hand in performing the allegedly botched fertilization procedure.

Despite the alleged baby bungle, little Jessica was born healthy.

The Andrews, however, fear that because of the circumstances of her birth “she may be subjected to physical and emotional illness as a result of not being the same race as her parents and siblings,” according to their suit.

The doctors and attorneys for the clinic could not be reached. In court papers, they have claimed they are not legally liable for the sperm screw-up.

I think that whenever you enter the murky waters of reproductive technologies you need to be prepared for things like this.



  1. says

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  2. Ava says

    It does seem like a tricky situation, but if anyone is going to make their child feel alienated or different than the rest of the family, it will be them. Initiating a lawsuit over it doesn’t seem the right way to send a message of love and acceptance to me(and she will get the message sooner or later). It seems unfair, but what can they do, return her for a refund? I say just accept what happened and do what all the adoptive/ sperm donor parents of the world do– love that child with all of their hearts!

  3. COLEEN COUCH says


  4. lauren says

    black baby born to WHITE parents??? wat the hell the mum does not look like a white woman AT ALL she looks like a mexican tramp (not offending mexicans only her) and the daughter other daughter looks as black to me as the “black one”………..

  5. Zbella says

    DEVASTADED – to have a healthy daughter? Please. I feel horrible for that little girl who has such heartless parents. I’ll adopt her if they don’t want her. Little dear.

  6. JAZMIN says


  7. J says

    Okay I usually don’t leave comments on stories but I felt compelled to on this one. I personally (and these are my opinions only) feel that the family is using that little girl as a big paycheck. Granted I definitely understand about the mix-up with the sperm samples, and I too would be extremely upset. But the family is putting to much into this, I had read this story maybe about 2 weeks ago in, I believe, People mag, and I had read that story and felt compassion on that family. But once I had read it again, it kind of made me wonder. Are they really ashamed that the little girl has black in her? I’ve read other comments with ppl saying she is not biologically theirs, actually she is…if you dont recall she was conceived with that mother’s egg. What kind of emotional distress is put on them, other then knowing the clinic messed up…that little girl is not a burden, and they should love her exactly as they do with their older daughter. When they say “they fear that because of the circumstances of her birth..she may be subjected to physical and emotional illness as a result of not being the same race as her parents and siblings”….come on now??? Really look at the world we live in now…everybody is mixed somehow, some way….Unfortunately they didnt get what they asked for, they got what they wanted..a beautiful baby girl. And no matter what that child should be loved and introduced to the rest of her family members that her parents “alienated” from her…..sheesh, the things ppl do in this world… BUT I DO AGREE ON SUING THE CLINIC, THEY SHOULD HAVE BEEN MORE CAREFUL, but they need to remember why, and thats not by seeing that beautiful child as a mistake.

  8. dori says

    Gina she is still better off than an adopted child who knows nothing of her background of her parents.
    So much for your theory.

  9. dori says

    You ladies are a perfect example of why we have a screwed up medical and legal system. Everyone screams sue sue sue whenever something doesn’t go right.
    This couple should thank their lucky stars that they have a normal healthy child ! Others adopt if they can’t have children….. Besides, why make this child feel she isn’t wanted or appreciated? How cruel is that?
    It’s a mixed race family, does it really matter what race the child is?
    Do you understand If people wouldn’t sue so much they medical industry would n’t have to have such high malpractice insurance and our medical costs wouldn’t skyrocket they way they are? and doctors wouldn’t have to close their medica practices?
    Back in the 60’s when mistakes were made responsibilty was taken apologies made and it was done.Now people sue.. who wins? The lawyers ….who take 30% of the win. Who loses? All of us… we pay the increased costs. Use your heads ok?

  10. N says

    Mrs J …… that was sarcasm. I know the mother is not white. Damn I hate having to explain “SARCASM” when you can look at the context clues of the sentence to see it was just that, SARCASM!

  11. says

    N- Are you blind? That mother is NOT white. Of course the first child looks mixed…she is!

    I think this story would have an entirely different angle if the baby had been the result of a lab mix-up but born blonde with blue eyes. It might not have ever even become a story, becuase instead of being “horrifed” (thanks, Scarlet), they’d have probably been thrilled.:(

  12. Tinkerbell says

    As a woman who had to have a child through egg donation and have a surrogate I have to say thank god my clinic got it right. We used my sisters egg, my husband made his contribution then my friend carried it. I can see how when so many people in this world need assistance it can be confusing, but that is NO excuse for a mix up. If this situation happened to me I would not love my daughter any less but after spending $15,000 to have her you can bet I’d sue the pants off of them if they made that kind of mistake. When you invest so much money then invest your whole heart into something like this, you could see how the parents would feel heart broken that their child is not biologically both of theirs. I hope they get what they want and there is no reason why that clinic should be able to walk away from this without compensating this family.

  13. Craig Maurice says

    The have a right to sue. Suing is a way to ensure the clinic is more careful. But, the parents need to reforce the fact that God does not make any mistakes. If the “mix” up would not have happened, that little girl would not exist. The IVF percentage is only slightly less than 50% for each cycle. So who knows if the pregnancy would have “taken” with the husband’s sperm. Yes, the clinic was wrong, but that family has a bigger responsibility to assuring their children that they are not mistakes. And that the children are blessing that the are thankful for….

  14. Joanne says

    Yes, the clinic was negligent and should face consequences. But I think that little girl faces more emotional torment from her parents’ “she’s not really our daughter” attitude than she does for having darker skin than they do. I have 4 adopted kids of a different race and they are 100% my children!!!

  15. Cheryl says

    I would sue. You can’t make mistakes like that in this field of work. You go to dr’s and specialists because they know what they are doing they are professionals. You wouldn’t go to a hairdresser to fix your car you would go to a mechanic. You go to a dr and pay for a certain outcome they have to give you what you pay for. If not you deserve your money back. In this case I think they deserve more.

  16. Lauren says

    They have a legitimate reason to be upset. While they may love that little girl, legally she is not their biological daughter. She’s someone else’s daughter. What about their bio child? What if they are born to some other couple? The clinic made a HUGE mistake and should pay for it.

  17. Kara says

    I’d be even more nervous to have a lawyer named Howard Stern representing me. That would be enough to make me nervous. He (Howard K Stern) hasn’t exactly had a lot of positive press lately

  18. june says

    They have a right to be upset, but now that the child is here, all you can do is love her. Could you imagine growing up to discover that your parents felt you were a mistake. People spend a ridiculous amount of money in an effort to have children built with their own genetic code when there are so many children out there who already exist and they desperately need loving homes. They should sue on merit because they paid for a service that was not performed, but they should not sue for “pain and suffering”. What pain and suffering could that precious little child cause them?

  19. Blair says

    Sue Sue Sue… They have every right. It doesn’t mean they don’t love her. It means the stupid clinic took their money and screwed up! They seem to love her very much.

  20. anon says

    Clarification – when I said “LEGAL rights” I meant “LEGAL reasons”…in other words, lets not get so involved in the battle we forget why we are fighting in the first place.

  21. anon says

    I hope that the BEST INTERESTS of the CHILD are not forgotten in all of this, regardless of error and judgement. She is not an object and although her creation may not have been as planned, she should not be ignored for sake of LEGAL rights! If there are aspects of the situation i.e. medical history that are at stake, then by all means, take legal action…as long as it is for HER benefit and not because someone is angry.

  22. mom of 2 says

    As someone that had 2 kids with the assistance of a fertility clinic I can say they were VERY careful to make sure things like this don’t happen. It is not something you should expect when you get involved with the “murky waters of reproductive technologies”

  23. Amber says

    The fact of the matter is that they aren’t casting their black daughter out. But whilst they love her because she is now their own – the clinic was negligent and it’s just not good enough. It starts with accidentally giving you the wrong fertilized egg and ends with a patient having their left leg amputated when it’s their right leg that is the problem. Doctors are responsible and unfortunately if you don’t drum into them that their are consequences for these massive mistakes then you can’t go in to get inseminated or have a surgery etc and trust them.

  24. Melisa says

    I agree with some of comments of the webmistress. When I read the story, I was instantly saddened for the little girl. I know they made a comment like “every time we look at her we are reminded of the mistake” I mean come on..she looks like her older sister she is just a little darker. I personally think the family is mad that they got a black child.
    I mean they do have a right to sue but what bothered me about this family was the comments and yes the webmistress has a right to judge. This family really bothered me.

    Like I said, I can understand not getting your husband materials but those comments about the little girl, she doesn’t have spots on her. geez she is healthy.

  25. says

    Wow, webmistress, that’s seems a little harsh, don’t you think?? Entering into the “murky waters of reproductive technology” is usually done out of necessity, not simply as another way to have a child. Do you have any CLUE how much it costs these couples both financially and emotionally in order to have a child? I’m guessing no. The process should be guaraneed 100%, with no room for error. These are people’s lives we’re talking about, and no one “should” be prepared for this type of outcome. Shame on you.

  26. melissa says

    I am absolutely disgusted by the web mistress’ comments. This is the most nightmarish thing to happen to parents trying to concieve. I am adopted, and I look just like everyone in my family and I feel very lucky. My best friend growing up was adopted and is not the same ethnic background as his parents and he was picked on and ridiculed his whole life. its horrible how ignorant people are! I am currently undergoing fertility treatments because I have horomonal issues. Being adopted, I can totally relate to what these parents are worried about. What about this child’s medical history? There is no doubt they will love this baby, but its something that they were not planning on or prepared for. I feel for them so bad, and hope that they win this case. When you work in a clinic of this nature, you need to triple check these things!! This is a life you are talking about, not sending the wrong spare part to someone!

  27. jules says

    WHAAATTTT? So, web mistress, it would be okay with you if you were impregnated with another man’s sperm? I don’t think so. I would sue the hell out of that clinic. I have actually looked in to in-vitro, for a friend, and compared to other fertility clinics, this one just got extremely careless. How hard is it to keep up with a test-tube? I would be devastated, I hope this couple breaks the bank.

  28. Gina says

    As a mom who has gone through IVF I can understand. You go through LOTS of work to get pregnant. You trust the dr’s you work with. You trust that they are honest, and they are helping you and your spouse get pregnant. There are some women who want children with only their mate, and that is there right. HOW DARE YOU!! The owner of this website JUDGE them without knowing there situation. They don’t say they love her less…they say she will lack vital information about her life.

  29. ben says

    this is really negligent and should be investigated. keeping sperm samples well labeled and seperated should be of primary concern to the clinic. this place should be investigated as well as the people and procedures sorrounding the mix up.

  30. Meme says

    Iam looking at the pictures and don’t see much of a difference in the color of both children. So what if she doesn’t get lighter. SHe’ll only be complexed about it if her parents put that into her head. I have dominican family members through my aunt and her husband and they are mixed children, and they look just like those little girls. They’re so worried about others opinions instead of nurturing this gir. Yes I know that the issue is the medical scewup but aside from all that, what are you going to do??? Give her back?

  31. muziklady says

    Glad to see I’m not the only one who thought the web mistress’ ‘outrage’ was totally stupid. I completely understand why they are suing. Even though nothing can be done about it, and I’m sure they will love their daughter anyway, the clinic should not be aloud to get away with that. Makes you wonder how may other times they messed up and the parent shave no idea. And furthermore, I don’t like how she said “the murkey waters of reproduction” or whatever. Maybe that was the only way they could conceive and their only hope of having a child. So I say, get over the self righteuos garble, I would sue too.

  32. traveller says

    What I would be concerned about would be my “sample” and whether or not it was used in another treatment either intentionally or by mistake. The man could have a child or children somewhere that he doesn’t know about. I would sue to get my samples back.

    It’s unacceptable that this would happen. It demonstrates that the clinic was not using any kind of organized storage procedure. When you go to a clinic expecting a biological child, and you pay for those treatments, you should get a biological child. If these clinics can’t keep samples straight, then maybe they should be shut down.

  33. carleigh says

    While I agree they have every right to go after the clinic and the Dr. who performed the mix-up, they are hopefully doing this for the right reasons and not for the almighty $$$. People today sue for every little nick and scratch and it’s becoming harder and harder for Dr’s to practice because of the rising costs of malpractice insurance the way it is. Has anyone bothered to check out the malpractice rates for an OB Dr. across the US? There is going to be a critical shortage of people going into the profession because of skyrocketing premiums and liabiity insurance. I agree there should be cases of medical malpractice that receive monetary settlements due to gross medical negligence, but this doesn’t to me fall under those guidelines. Yes, clearly a mistake was made, but the couple had to know that at some point they are not conceiving this child naturually, it’s in a laboratory and there is a margin for human error and this is what happened. They have a healthy, beautiful daughter and should be happy about that, not telling their family about the situation….well I think if the family can read a simple newspaper that pretty much rules out that big “secret”. I don’t know if I necessarily agree or not, but I just hope their motives are in pursuit of the justice because of the error and not because they think they can make a quick buck off this misfortune.

  34. Lurker says

    I agree with #1..personally I can’t understand how anyone could feel this couple has NO RIGHT to sue! I think they have EVERY RIGHT.

    I mean, sure, “mistakes happen”..but this is a big one! No doubt this little girl will be loved regardless, but if this couple went in to have an in-vitro procedure between THIS husband and wife, that’s likely what they expected to get!

    True they can’t change anything now..but maybe if the clinic is held responsible, they’ll be a little more careful the next time!

    I think it’s pathetic that people think stuff like that “just happens” because a couple seeks help because they are having trouble conceiveing on their own.

    If you were given the wrong baby in the hospital wouldn’t you be upset? Though it resulted in a beautiful and healthy baby, thank heavens, it was still gross negligence on the clinic’s part.

  35. DMITZ says

    I completely agree w/suze. I would be so upset and I feel for that father knowing that the child is technically “not his”. Yes it is born to his wife w/her DNA and all, but people do these procedures for a reason. If they didn’t want the child biologically linked to both parents then they would adopt or ASK for a different sperm donor. I would be devasated. I would love the child and take care of the child, but I would always feel like a part of “me” is missing (or my husband).

  36. suze says

    Seems to me that the family is upset not because of the mixed race issue (they would have expected a mixed race child knowing the mother’s background), but because the child is not biologically the father’s. I think the situation would be different if they used a donor sperm, and were unsure of the father’s entire background. I think that any family using this technology would rightly expect the child born to them to be genetically theirs. They have every right to sue and to be upset!

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