Another Former Staffer Testifies Against Abortionist Brian Finkel

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 9, 2003   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Another Former Staffer Testifies Against Abortionist Brian Finkel

by Steven Ertelt Editor
September 9, 2003

Phoenix, AZ ( — The trial of abortion practitioner Brian Finkel continues, despite the lack of media coverage outside Phoenix about it. Finkel has been charged with 67 counts of sexually abusing 35 women since 1986 during exams and abortions.

The second week of testimony in the trial began Monday. The first week featured women who accused Finkel of touching their breasts and sexual organs during exams and a former employee of Finkel’s who asked him to stop touching women’s inappropriately.

So far 15 of the 55 people the prosecution plans to call have testified.

Members of Finkel’s staff at the abortion business feared reprisals and kept information about the abuses to themselves.

On Monday another former staff member testified that Finkel frequently inappropriate touched women’s reproductive anatomy and fondled their breasts. Rene Imrisck also said she grew tired of Finkel’s crude remarks

She urged one woman to contact the police following Finkel’s abuse of her. The woman said Finkel jerked her hard down into the stirrups.

Imrisck says Finkel made rude comments about one woman’s bra size and concluded by saying, "I really know my breasts."

She also said she refused Finkel’s request to touch another patient’s breast, telling him, "I didn’t want to do that."

Attorney Richard Gierloff, who is representing Finkel, has developed a defense strategy that relies on finding inconsistencies in the testimony women gave to investigators in depositions and what they say on the stand.

Gierloff got Imrisck to tell him that the woman in question has told Finkel she was having problems with a breast implant.

He also pointed out that one woman, a 39 year-old from the Phoenix suburb of Scottsdale, originally told police Finkel fondled her breasts once. During the trial, she said he touched them twice, and Gierloff quickly asked her about the differing accounts.

"That makes it so much better if it says just one," the woman growled in response.

Gierloff is also asking the jury to decide what is inappropriate.

"What’s improper," defense attorney Richard Gierloff said. "That’s what a lot of this question is about."

Finkel claims it is necessary to touch women’s private parts during some exam procedures. However, a Colorado woman said other doctors never touched her the same way or squeezed her nipples during breast exams as Finkel did.

Many of the women who say Finkel abused them never came forward.

"The criminal conduct in this case was kept secret by many of these women for many, many years," said deputy Maricopa County attorney Blaine Gadow.

Finkel was responsible for performing approximately 20 percent of the abortions done in Arizona.