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Crime & Courts

Jury returns to deliberations Monday in trial of abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell

  • Abortion Clinic Death_Cala.jpg

    FILE - In this March 8, 2010 file photo, Dr. Kermit Gosnell is seen during an interview with the Philadelphia Daily News at his attorney's office in Philadelphia. Gosnell, an abortion provider charged with killing a patient and four babies, trial is scheduled to begin closing arguments Monday, April 29, 2013. (AP Photo/Philadelphia Daily News, Yong Kim, File) MANDATORY CREDIT, NO SALES (A201020102010)

  • Abortion Deaths Impac_Cala.jpg

    This Wednesday, May 1, 2013 photo shows Dr. Kermit Gosnell's former facility, the Women's Medical Society, in Philadelphia where prosecutors allege he killed five people, including a patient and four viable babies allegedly born alive. Assistant District Attorney Ed Cameron called Gosnell's operation an assembly line where a stream of poor, mostly minority women and teens endured hours of painful labor and delivery because Gosnell did not successfully abort babies in utero. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke) (A2013)

Jurors will return Monday to deliberate on the charges that Philadelphia doctor Kermit Gosnell killed a patient and four babies that prosecutors allege were born alive.

Gosnell, 72, ran the Women’s Medical Society clinic in West Philadelphia for 30 years until the FBI shut down the facility in a raid in 2010.

Gosnell faces a third-degree murder charge in the death of patient Karnamaya Mongar. He is also charged with four counts of first-degree murder for infants who were allegedly born alive and were killed by suffering severed spinal cords at Gosnell’s hands. Several clinic employees have pleaded guilty to murder charges.

Prosecutors allege Gosnell’s untrained, unlicensed staff gave Mongar a fatal combination of oral and intravenous drugs on Nov. 19, 2009, and failed to properly monitor her vital signs during the second-term procedure. Mongar went into cardiac arrest, lapsed into a coma and died the following day. Gosnell’s attorney, Jack McMahon, has countered that Mongar, who was 19 weeks pregnant at the time, had unreported respiratory damage and died of complications.

Gosnell, who faces a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by Mongar’s relatives, is also charged with violating Pennsylvania’s abortion law for allegedly performing abortions after 24 weeks. Some observers have said the trial highlights the difficulty to get an abortion up to 24 weeks of pregnancy, or the end of the second trimester. A clinic near Mongar’s home in Woodbridge, Va., reportedly did not perform abortions after 14 weeks.

The only co-defendant, unlicensed doctor Eileen O'Neill, is charged with racketeering and working without a license. Her lawyer says she worked under Gosnell's supervision.

Jurors have heard nearly two months of graphic testimony and will begin their 10th day of deliberations Monday.

The jury is weighing about 260 counts, including the five murder counts.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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