Fertility doctor who used his OWN sperm to inseminate patients is the subject of a new documentary

The children of the Indiana fertility doctor who used his own semen to artificially inseminate his patients without their consent share their horrific story in an upcoming Netflix documentary.

Premiere on May 11 ‘Our dad‘tells of how a woman’s DNA test led to the nauseating discovery that it once praised Dr. Donald Cline secretly became the father of dozens of his patients’ children at his clinic in Indianapolis in the 70s and 80s.

The documentary directed by Lucie Jourdan shows Jacoba Ballard – one of the first people to learn that Cline was her biological father – and many of her half-siblings.

“When I was growing up, I felt different,” she explained in the film’s shocking new trailer.

The new Netflix documentary ‘Our Father’ describes how Dr. Donald Cline, a fertility specialist in Indianapolis, Indiana, used his own semen to inseminate patients without their consent

Cline secretly became the father of dozens of children through her fertility clinic in the 70s and 80s

Cline secretly became the father of dozens of children through her fertility clinic in the 70s and 80s

Ballard, who grew up as an only child, had known she was conceived through sperm donation since she was 10 years old. In 2014, the then 33-year-old joined an online forum for adopted and donor-conceived children in an attempt to find his half-siblings.

In Sarah Zhang’s 2019 article for The Atlantic, ‘The Fertility Doctor’s Secret’, she explained how she quickly came into contact with another woman whose mother had also been treated by Cline. As soon as she saw her Facebook photos, she knew they had to be related.

That woman knew another woman whose mother had also gone to Cline and she had a sister. The four of them took 23andMe tests to confirm that they were half-sisters, but the results showed that they also had four more half-siblings.

They continued to search for theirs biological father by cross-matching their DNA with public databases to find relatives, and the name ‘Cline’ kept popping up. They eventually tracked down a distant relative who told her she had a cousin named Donald Cline who was a fertility specialist in Indianapolis.

Cline had told his patients that the donors were medical residents and claimed that he only used each donor’s semen for three successful pregnancies. But their unusually large number of half-siblings told a different story.

Jacoba Ballard (pictured) knew she was conceived via sperm donor and was one of the first to discover that Cline was her father

Jacoba Ballard (pictured) knew she was conceived via sperm donor and was one of the first to discover that Cline was her father

An initial DNA test led Ballard (pictured with some of her half-siblings) to find out she was seven half-siblings.  She continued to discover more and more

An initial DNA test led Ballard (pictured with some of her half-siblings) to find out she was seven half-siblings. She continued to discover more and more

While searching for answers, four of the eight siblings filed complaints to the Indian Attorney General, asking about their suspicion that Cline had used her own semen in patients to be examined.

In 2015, Ballard sent a Facebook message to Fox59 news anchor Angela Ganote asking for her help. The local station sent a segment about a suspiciously high number of children from a donor at the time, but Cline was not named.

‘He is known in our society as a philanthropist. He’s an elder in the church, ‘Ganote said of Cline’s reputation in the trailer.

It was Cline’s son who helped organize a meeting between the doctor and six of the newly discovered half-siblings, including Ballard. During the reunion, Cline allegedly admitted to having used her own semen, but said their medical records had been destroyed.

By the time The Atlantic article was published, the number of children Cline had with her patients was known to be more than 50.

Cline was a highly respected fertility doctor at the time.  He told his patients that the donors were medical residents and claimed that he only used each donor's semen for three successful pregnancies

Cline was a highly respected fertility doctor at the time. He told his patients that the donors were medical residents and claimed that he only used each donor’s semen for three successful pregnancies

Jason Hyatt (pictured) remembered his shock when he discovered how many relatives he had due to Cline's horrific deception

Jason Hyatt (pictured) remembered his shock when he discovered how many relatives he had due to Cline’s horrific deception

“When I opened Ancestry, I had over 3,000 hits,” he explained

“When I opened Ancestry, I had over 3,000 hits,” Jason Hyatt recalled in the trailer, while another added, “I dread every new fight that comes, but they just keep coming.”

Another person explained that the majority of Cline’s secret children ‘live within a radius of 25 km apart’, which means they are not sure who they are and are not related to in the area.

“You ask,” Please let it not be anyone I know. Please do not let it be anyone I dated, “said one woman.

For years, Ballard and her half-siblings have wondered what made Cline lie to her patients and use her own semen to fertilize them.

‘Most of us have blonde hair, blue eyes. It was almost like this perfect Aryan clan, Ballard said in the documentary. ‘It’s disgusting.’

Meanwhile, Matt White could not help but ask, 'How the hell did no one know that for decades?'

Meanwhile, Matt White could not help but ask, ‘How the hell did no one know that for decades?’

Julie Harmons mother, Dianna Kiesler, remembered how she had to tell her husband that their daughter was not biologically her

Julie Harmons mother, Dianna Kiesler, remembered how she had to tell her husband that their daughter was not biologically her

'Most of us have blonde hair, blue eyes.  It was almost like this perfect Aryan clan, Ballard said in the documentary.  'It's disgusting'

‘Most of us have blonde hair, blue eyes. It was almost like this perfect Aryan clan, Ballard said in the documentary. ‘It’s disgusting’

“I think it was some sick experiment for him,” suggested another.

Meanwhile, Matt White could not help but ask, ‘How the hell did no one know that for decades?’

His mother, Liz White, had been trying to get pregnant with her husband for two and a half years when their fertility doctor referred them to Cline, who used fresh donor sperm instead of frozen, which had a higher success rate at the time.

Cline reportedly told them he would find a doctor whose appearance and blood type matched her husband’s. He also urged them not to tell anyone about the donor sperm, including their future child.

The mother, who was inseminated by Cline 15 times over five months, did not discover he had used his own semen until he was in the news.

Another person explained that the majority of Cline's secret children 'live within a radius of 25 miles apart', which means they are not sure who they are and are not related to in the area.

Another person explained that the majority of Cline’s secret children ‘live within a radius of 25 miles apart’, which means they are not sure who they are and are not related to in the area.

'You pray,

“You ask, ‘Let it not be anyone I know.’ Please do not let it be anyone I dated, “said one woman.

Cline, who was retired and in his early 80s, was charged with two counts of crimes that had violated justice for dismissing the charges

Cline, who was retired and in his early 80s, was charged with two counts of crimes that had violated justice for dismissing the charges

“I feel like I’ve been raped 15 times,” she told The Atlantic.

Julie Harmon also saw a TV news story about Cline, years after she discovered that her blood type indicated she was not biologically related to one of her parents.

In the documentary, her mother, Dianna Kiesler, recalled how Cline made her believe he had inseminated her with her husband’s semen.

Cline lost his medical license and was fined only $ 500 for his actions

Cline lost his medical license and was fined only $ 500 for his actions

‘I had to say to my husband,’ We’re about to find out now that Julie is not yours, ” she said as her daughter cried next to her.

Ballard and her half-siblings were determined to seek justice, but his actions were not technically considered a crime. At the time, there were no Indiana laws prohibiting the secret use of a doctor’s own semen.

‘I do not deny that it was a sexual assault. But legally, there is just no crime that affects this particular act, ‘Tim DeLaney, the prosecutor in the case, explained in the documentary.

Cline, who was retired and in his early 80s, was indicted on two counts of crimes that have barred justice from dismissing the charges. He lost his medical license and was fined only $ 500.

In 2019, Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb signed a new law making fertility fraud and deception illegal in the state. Cline’s case, however, was far from over in the eyes of his victims.

“He’s hiding something more scary,” one person insisted at the end of the trailer.

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