Abortion Practitioner Brian Finkel Found Guilty of Sexual Abuse

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 2, 2003   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Abortion Practitioner Brian Finkel Found Guilty of Sexual Abuse

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
December 2, 2003

Phoenix, AZ (LifeNews.com) — A jury on Tuesday found abortion practitioner Brian Finkel guilty of 24 counts of sexual abuse. More than 60 women complained Finkel inappropriately touched them and, in some cases, their sexual organs, during abortions and examinations.

Finkel was acquitted of 34 of the counts, including all of the sexual assault charges. Jurors were undecided on four of the charges.

However, more than 30 women testified that Finkel groped or touched them and that was enough for the jury to issue a verdict against Finkel after deliberating for fourteen days. Though they had never met each other, the victims told of similar patterns of harassment.

Cindi Nannetti, a deputy county attorney, told jurors before the deliberations began, "To find him not guilty would mean you didn’t believe their stories."

During the trial, a woman who worked as one of his medical assistants says she quit her job at the abortion facility in large part because of Finkel’s conduct.

Dawn Normoyle, 35, said she smacked Finkel on the arm once and told him to stop touching the private parts of a woman during an exam.

"It didn’t seem like it was right," Normoyle told the jury, but "he told me that’s how he does pelvic exams." Now living in Florida, she worked for Finkel in 1994 and 1995.

According to the Arizona Republic newspaper, Finkel sat stoically as the verdict was read. Some of the women whom Finkel had abused were sitting in the gallery and they applauded as the guilty charge was rendered.

Finkel claimed he did nothing wrong and that the touching of women’s breasts and private parts were part of standard medical procedure. A South Dakota abortion practitioner disputed his claim.

Finkel’s attorney Richard Gierloff also claimed that police had put ideas the heads of the victim by asking them questions with specifics when they did not remember exactly what had happened. Gierloff said testimony during the trial from several women didn’t match the original description of the allegations given to police.

Finkel is expected to appeal the decision and a date for sentencing was not announced.

Pro-life groups were pleased with the ruling and said Finkel’s conduct shows the abortion industry’s view of women.

"It was his total lack of regard for the women that [was] his downfall," John Jakubczyk, president of Arizona Right to Life, told LifeNews.com.

"At last, there has been vindication for those women who are victimized by this predator," Jakubczyk added. "Those in the pro-life movement who knew of his dark side have often concerned themselves with not just the fate of the unborn child but also with that of the woman.

Finkel performs approximately 20 percent of all abortions in Arizona and has done more than 20,000 over his career.

The trial in Maricopa County Superior Court lasted 12 weeks.