Philly Abortionist Found Guilty of First-degree Murder

By:  Jack Kenny
Philly Abortionist Found Guilty of First-degree Murder

The Philadelphia doctor whose late-term abortions were carried out in an alleged "house of horrors" was found guilty of three counts of first-degree murder Monday.

Dr. Kermit Gosnell, 72, was also found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the death of a woman after a late-term abortion. He was acquitted of a fourth charge of first-degree murder. After 10 days of deliberation, the jury could not reach a verdict on two other charges against the Philadelphia physician, the Associated Press reported.

Gosnell was accused of severing the spines of babies born alive at his Women's Medical Society clinic in West Philadelphia. The clinic was shut down by the FBI following a 2010 raid over his high-volume distribution of painkiller drug prescriptions. Authorities stumbled upon abortions being performed late at night amid allegedly filthy conditions. They reported finding 47 aborted fetuses stored in refrigerators at the clinic.

Prosecutors claimed Gosnell treated women with unsterilized equipment and untrained workers, while performing more than 1,000 abortions a year on an "assembly line" of patients. Three of seven first-degree murder charges were dismissed when the court ruled the prosecution had failed to provide evidence the infants had been born alive. A 300-page grand jury report in 2011 said there had been hundreds of babies born alive, only to have their spines severed, at Gosnell's clinic.

"Gosnell had a simple solution for the unwanted babies he delivered," the report said. "The way he ensured fetal demise was by sticking scissors into the back of the baby's neck and cutting the spinal cord. He called that 'snipping.'"

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Photo of Dr. Kermit Gosnell: AP Images

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