Pennsylvania police have arrested and jailed abortionist Dr. Kermit Gosnell and others involved in the death of a 41-year-old woman and seven babies who were born alive.
Gosnell, 69, his wife, and eight other suspects were taken into custody in an overnight raid Tuesday after a grand jury handed down indictments that included eight counts of murder. Among Gosnell's victims is Karnamaya Monger who died on Nov. 20, 2009, from an overdose of painkillers during an abortion in her 18th or 19th week of pregnancy.
The Philadelphia abortionist is also charged with killing seven babies who were born alive during failed illegal late-term abortions.
"He regularly performed abortions beyond the 24-week limit prescribed by law. As a result, viable babies were born. Gosnell killed them by plunging scissors into their spinal cords," Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams told the AFP news service.
There were several complaints made against Gosnell and his West Philadelphia clinic, the Women's Medical Society, since 1993. State regulators ignored those complaints until early last year when one of his female patients died of a narcotics-induced heart attack.
As the state began investing the clinic, they found what Williams called "a house of horrors."
Bags and bottles holding aborted fetuses "were scattered throughout the building," according to Williams.
"There were jars, lining shelves, with severed feet that he kept for no medical purpose," said the Philadelphia district attorney.
Even more horrific were Gosnell's medical practices. Gosnell got his medical degree from Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia and is board certified in family practice.
Yet, all his staff, which included his wife, Pearl, had no medical training. Investigations found that these untrained personnel performed intravenous anesthesia with potentially lethal narcotics.
The woman whose death Gosnell is being charged with died of cardiac arrest because she was given too much of the narcotic Demerol. Demerol treats moderate to severe pain and may also slow the heartbeat and cause seizures.
Also, Gosnell himself was not trained to perform abortions. According to authorities, he started but never completed a residency in obstetrics-gynecology.
As a result, he has been named in at least 46 malpractice suits, several of them involving instances of perforated uteruses. Prosecutors say Gosnell sometimes sewed up the injury without telling women their uteruses had been perforated.
"He does not know how to do an abortion. He's not board certified [to do so]," Assistant District Attorney Joanne Pescatore told The Associated Press.
Gosnell made millions over the course of 30 years performing abortions. He charged $325 for first-trimester abortions and $1,600 to $3,000 for abortions up to 30 weeks. Abortions are illegal after 24 weeks in Pennsylvania. The clinic performed dozens of abortions a day and employees often worked overnight, said prosecutors.
During the raid Tuesday on Gosnell's home, police found $240,000 in cash.
"As shocking as this case is, it is in no way an anomaly," said Troy Newman, president of the Christian pro-life group Operation Rescue. "Shoddy and illegal practices characterize the abortion industry in America. There are more Gosnell's out there victimizing and murdering under the cover of secrecy."
Newman praised Pennsylvania authorities for their diligence to "protect the public from this serial killer and bring Gosnell and his cohorts to justice."