Gosnell kept the remains of 47 aborted babies in cat food containers, milk jugs: medical examiner
Tue Apr 16, 2013 09:11 EST
For the first time, photos of Karnamaya Mongar’s dead baby were shown to the jury. Mongar died from an overdose of Demerol during a second trimester abortion done by Gosnell.
Mongar’s baby was estimated to be 16-19 weeks gestation. The baby’s skin was bright red (a condition later described as the early stages of decomposition), and sported a head of dark brown hair. The Medical Examiner found no fetal anomalies when he examined the baby’s body. A photo of the back of the child showed a deep gash approximately an inch long in the back of the baby’s neck. Mongar’s abortion took place in 2007, meaning that those remains had been stored in a freezer at the clinic for three years.
Jury Sees More Dead Baby Photos
The bodies of a baby boy and a baby girl with similar neck gashes were also shown in grisly color on a large screen opposite the jury box. The remains of one baby, which were not shown to the jury, were described as missing both feet severed above the ankle and a right hand severed above the wrist.
Dr. Gulino testified that he received three batches of remains from Gosnell’s clinic, the largest of which contained the remains of 42 babies. The remains were frozen and stored in a variety of containers, including milk jugs, cat food cans, and even a cherry lime-ade container. The containers were each in bags and those bags were found in three large red bio-hazard bags. Several containers contained the “fragmented” remains of several babies. Ages were estimated from 12 weeks or less up to 22 weeks. He found that two of the babies were “possibly viable.”
It took Dr. Gulino five days just to catalog the contents before examinations could even be done.
Mystery of the Fetal Feet
He also later received five jars containing fetal feet and first trimester abortion remains that had been preserved in formaldehyde. The jars were labeled with the patients' names and dates of the abortions, which ranged from December 5-9, 2009. Two of the jars were from the same patient and contained a right and left foot of the same baby. Using the measurement of the feet, Dr. Gulino estimated the fetal ages to be 14-19 weeks gestation.
Gosnell’s defense attorney implied that the extremities were preserved in the event that DNA evidence was needed and as proof of fetal age; however, the severing of both feet and a hand would be unnecessary even if this were the case, Gulino testified. The prosecution believes that the feet and hands were taken as trophies by Gosnell, just as serial killers often engage in the practice of taking mementos from victims they kill.
Frozen Remains Present Challenges
Because the aborted baby remains had been frozen and thawed for examination - a tricky process, according to the medical examiner - the tissue samples were damaged to some extent, making testing to determine whether a baby breathed air inconclusive. Because of this, there was no way he could say for sure that any of the babies were actually born alive. However, he testified that it is possible that they were alive at birth or had been birthed into water such as into a toilet. Several former employees testified that they saw babies born into toilets at Gosnell’s clinic. There would be no reason to sever the baby’s spinal cords if they were dead prior to birth, as the defense claims.
The subject of viability was a touchy one on which McMahon aggressively questioned Dr. Gulino. Shockingly, McMahon marched to the jury box and dramatically asked Dr. Gulino, “If the baby is dead, it can’t be viable, can it?”
McMahon suggested that any movements by a baby after birth were simply a condition known as cadaveric spasm, which was described as movement of muscle groups as the result of the rapid onset of rigor mortis. The medical examiner indicated that was unlikely due to the under-developed nature of muscles at the gestational ages being discussed.
Testimony ended when a shouting match broke out between McMahon and prosecutor Edward Cameron over whether the babies were born alive. Cameron was conducting questioning on re-direct when McMahon angrily blurted out a question out of turn. The two men began shouting at each other, and both were shouted down by Judge Jeffery Minehart, who rebuked McMahon and told him to “act lake a lawyer.” The argument ended questioning for the day.
Planned Parenthood Abortionist Testifies
Earlier in the morning, testimony was heard from Charles David Benjamin, an abortionist who works for Planned Parenthood in Philadelphia. Benjamin was presented as an abortion expert over the objections of Gosnell’s attorney Jack McMahon.
Benjamin, a stocky, balding middle-aged man, stated that he is a Doctor of Osteopathy who trains residents as part of his staff duties at Albert Einstein hospital in Philadelphia. He admitted to having done 40,000 abortions over his 30 years in practice.
Benjamin testified concerning Gosnell’s grossly outdated sonogram machine, his use of drugs in abortion procedures, and the dispensing of pain and sedation drugs by Gosnell’s unqualified workers in his absence.
Benjamin Admits to Missing Drugs
Benjamin told the court that his clinic’s crash cart is inspected monthly and admitted that he has had emergency drugs tampered with or missing, which was discovered during inspections. The only crash cart Gosnell apparently owned was not stored at his clinic, but found by police under his bed at his residence.
As for Gosnell’s use of digoxin to kill the pre-born baby prior to a late-term abortion, Benjamin testified that amounts recorded on Gosnell’s charts represented more than 500 times the normal dosage. Testimony given earlier in the trial indicated that there was no physical evidence that digoxin was ever used on the babies he is charged with murdering.
The trial will resume tomorrow morning with the family of Karnamaya expected to testify. Operation Rescue will be reporting from the trial all week.
Former Kermit Gosnell employee testifies she saw more than 14 babies born alive
- Fri Apr 19, 2013 19:08 EST
The evidence Monday included testimony from Sam P. Gulino, Philadelphia’s chief medical examiner, who described receiving scores of fetuses and baby parts to examine in 2010 after authorities raided Gosnell’s clinic.
Gulino described two jars filled with formaldehyde, one holding a left foot and the other a right foot, from the same 22-week fetus.
“It was really an unprecedented situation," Gulino said. "It was the first time I had to deal with fetal remains that had been frozen. . . . All I could do was allow the remains to thaw so that I could examine them."
“Jesus," whispered a woman in the audience.
From an Associated Press story posted late Thursday:
PHILADELPHIA — A whistle-blowing worker testified Thursday that she saw more than 14 babies born alive at a Philadelphia abortion clinic, capping a month of prosecution evidence in her former boss’s capital murder trial.
Prosecutors chose Kareema Cross as their final witness before resting their case against Kermit Gosnell. Ms. Cross said she saw more than 10 babies breathe, with their chests moving up and down.
“I thought they were breathing,’ testified Ms. Cross, 28. ‘He would say they’re not really breathing.’
Ms. Cross also described seeing three babies move. Dr. Gosnell explained the movements as a last reflex amid the death process, she said…
One of her photographs, shown to jurors on a large screen, showed specimen jars containing the feet of aborted fetuses, which Dr. Gosnell said he kept for DNA purposes. Another showed ‘the largest baby she had ever seen’ aborted at the clinic. The gestational age has been estimated by some trial experts to be nearly 30 weeks.
The prosecution in the murder trial of abortionist Kermit Gosnell completed its case Thursday with testimony from former employee Kareema Cross which encapsulated much of what was attested to over the past five weeks.
Gosnell stands accused of seven counts of first degree murder in the death of seven viable babies prosecutors say Gosnell aborted alive and then murdered by slitting their spinal cords; and one count of third degree murder in the death of a woman who died from an overdose of Demerol and other pain killers administered by Gosnell’s untrained employees.
Also on trial is 56-year-old Eileen O’Neill an unlicensed doctor who worked with Gosnell. She is charged with participating in a “corrupt organization.”
The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Joseph A. Slobodzian reported that it is not known if either Gosnell or O’Neill will testify but that defense attorney Jack McMahon said they have witnesses. The trial resumes Monday.
Cross, who worked at Gosnell’s Women’s Medical Society from 2005-2009, testified she became so disturbed at what took place there that, using a false name, she reported Gosnell to the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.
As it happens the DEA was already probing Gosnell for allegedly illegally selling prescription drugs. (Prosecutors have called Gosnell’s clinic a “pill mill” by day and an “abortion mill” by night. Gosnell faces trial in the fall on drug charges.)
Questioned by Assistant District Attorney Edward Cameron, Cross said that in October 2008 she took 10 photographs showing unsanitary conditions and fetal remains at the clinic.
McMahon challenged Cross’ credibility and altruism, arguing that she reported Gosnell to the DEA after their workplace relationship soured.
“You still worked there, right?’"McMahon asked.
“I had a family to take care of," Cross replied.
“Cross said she left the clinic in December 2009 after Gosnell criticized her for going elsewhere to have an abortion in 2007,” according to the Associated Press’s MaryClare Dale.
Like other former Gosnell employees, Cross testified that she performed medical procedures for which she had no training. “Cross said Gosnell regularly did late second-trimester abortions and third-trimester procedures that he documented as ‘24.5 weeks,’” Slobodzian reported.
Gosnell behind ‘Mother’s Day Massacre’ over 40 years ago that injured 9 women
PHILADELPHIA, April 16, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Kermit Gosnell's history of injuring women through reckless abortion practices extends as far back as 1972, when he injured nine women by testing an experimental abortion device on them that caused plastic razor blades to lacerate their wombs. Even then, however, Gosnell escaped receiving any disciplinary action, with the state turning a blind eye, as it would for the next four decades as he operated his "House of Horrors."
Those women were not told the abortionist intended to use them as guinea pigs for a new device, an abortion “super-coil,” developed by a psychologist masquerading as a "doctor." Randy Hutchins, the only medical professional with a license to work in Gosnell's facility beside Kermit, related to the grand jury how Gosnell described the incident to him:
At the time that he agreed to do this, there was a device that he and a psychologist were working on that was supposed to be plastic – basically plastic razors that were formed into a ball. All right. They were coated into a gel, so that they would remain closed. These would be inserted into the woman’s uterus. And after several hours of body temperature...the gel would melt and these 97 things would spring open, supposedly cutting up the fetus, and the fetus would be expelled.
He added, “This was not something that was sanctioned by the FDA. This was just something that he decided – he and this guy decided they were going to use on these women.”
A film crew from New York caught the experiments on film.
Nine of the 15 women were injured. One required a hysterectomy. A joint federal-state investigation found other serious complications including hemorrhaging, infections, and portions of the unborn baby being left inside the uterus – still a common problem.
After the incident, Gosnell left Pennsylvania, spending some time in the Bahamas and New York.
According to Hutchins, Gosnell explained his reasons for leaving the state, saying, "If the State Board of Medicine hadn’t brought any charges against you, all right, and you were away long enough, you could come back and your license was still considered to be in good standing."
The grand jury report notes wryly, "Gosnell was apparently correct. The Pennsylvania Board of Medicine ignored his role in this grotesquely unsuccessful experiment, which seriously and permanently maimed several women."
It continues: "The Board overlooked Gosnell’s unprofessional conduct not only in the 1970s but for the next three decades, as he continued to employ unlicensed workers to practice medicine at his clinic, and as his patients continued to suffer serious injuries or worse during abortion procedures."
The super-coil that Gosnell used had been developed by Harvey Karman, a Los Angeles psychologist who killed a woman in April 1955 after attempting to perform an abortion with a speculum and a nutcracker. After that incident he was charged with performing an illegal abortion, and spent some time in jail.
Karman (born Harvey Walters) tested the device on "hundreds" of women in Bangladesh, at the government's invitation. “Those women suffered a high rate of complications,” the grand jury report states. “Nonetheless, Karman brought his 'super coil' to Philadelphia, where he found an ally in Gosnell.”
Although Karman never earned a doctorate or M.D., after he was released from jail he began saying he had earned a doctorate from a non-existent European university and calling himself “doctor.” Like Gosnell, he was considered a pioneer of abortion rights.
“Doctor” Karman and health writer Merle Goldberg had developed a cannula that effectively aborted unborn babies in the first trimester. The “super-coil” was intended to be its second-trimester counterpart.
Upon his death in 2008 at the age of 84, the Los Angeles Times' obituary remembered Gosnell's one-time partner as the “Creator of device for safer abortions.”