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Former Kermit Gosnell employee testifies she saw more than 14 babies born alive

by | Apr 19, 2013

By Dave Andrusko

From Tuesday’s Washington Post

“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.)

Slobodzian wrote

“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.

Categories: Gosnell