Abortionist Gosnell Could Face Death Penalty, Has No Lawyer

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Feb 4, 2011   |   5:39PM   |   Philadelphia, PA

Kermit Gosnell, the controversial abortion practitioner who killed a woman and seven babies in abortion-infanticides, could face the death penalty for the charges — but he has no attorney.

Prosecutors are debating whether they want to seek the death penalty in the case that drew national attention because of Gosnell’s grisly abortion business, killing a woman in a failed abortion and the dozens of times he purposefully birthed late-term babies in order to kill them.

Gosnell appeared in court today on a hearing related to the eight total charges and the court denied his request for a public defender because court record substantiated the fact that Gosnell made millions in the abortion industry and currently holds properties valued “in the millions,” according to Fox News, including a nice second home in Brigantine, New Jersey valued at $900,000.

He was ordered by Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes to hire an attorney for the hearing that will take place next Wednesday.

The Philadelphia Inquirer indicates part of the reason Gosnell has no attorney is the one he retained to help him battle the grand jury report prosecutors released detailing the grisly problems no longer works for him.

William J. Brennan represented Gosnell during the 10-month-long grand jury investigation and he told the newspaper he was hired with the understanding he would be defending Gosnell against allegations he was illegally selling medication prescriptions — not that Gosnell was engaged in violating state laws concerning abortion and killing viable babies.

Brennan will not represent Gosnell at the trial and Gosnell, who remain in jail without bail, has not been able to find an attorney yet to represent him and his wife, who has been charged as well and also with obstructing justice. She is in prison because she could not post the $1 million in bail the court required.

“I think it’s going to be very hard to argue that [Gosnell] needs to have an appointed attorney,” said Assistant District Attorney Christine Wechsler told the newspaper.

Meanwhile, prosecutors are still debating whether they want to seek the death penalty. Although the state of Pennsylvania has 217 death-penalty convictions on record, no one since Gary Heidnik in 1999 has been executed under the state law, according to Fox News.

The abortion industry has been forced to suspend two abortion businesses that employed embattled abortion practitioner Kermit Gosnell, who has been the subject of national controversy over his abortion business in Philadelphia.

Following revelations that Gosnell is associated with two other abortion centers in Louisiana and Delaware, the National Abortion Federation made the decision to suspend the memberships of both. Atlantic Women’s Medical Services, the Delaware abortion business that employed Gosnell one day a week to do abortions, and the Delta Clinic abortion center of Baton Rouge, have both had their memberships suspended. Leroy Brinkley owns both abortion businesses. Atlantic operates abortion centers in Wilmington and Dover.

Delaware law does not require inspections of abortion centers but Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden said his office will launch a “wide-ranging” investigation of Gosnell and probe his work at the Delaware abortion facility given the vast problems at his Pennsylvania abortion center.

Gosnell has been charged with eight counts of murder and several of his staff at the abortion center, including his wife and sister-in-law, have been charged as well in the case with assisting in botched abortions, practicing medicine without a license or covering up the actions of those who did. The counts include grisly infanticides that involved Gosnell snipping the spines with scissors of babies who had purposefully been prematurely born so they could be killed moments later.

Mongar died November 20, 2009, after overdosing on anesthetics prescribed by the doctor, Williams said. Mongar’s family filed a lawsuit against Gosnell’s abortion business seeking damages.

“We want justice, this doctor has to be out of that clinic or he should not be treating anybody,” Damber Ghalley told CNN. “And the things that happen to my sister, I don’t want to happen to anybody in the future.”

He told CNN “the clinic was so dirty, filthy with blood stains and a dirty floor, everywhere dirty, I cannot describe how dirty it was.”

Gosnell has been denied bail while the case against him moves forward. Women have spoken out about their treatment and one woman says she was drugged and tied up and forced to have an abortion.

Authorities searching the facility last year found bags and bottles holding aborted babies scattered around the building, jars containing babies’ severed feet lining a shelf, as well as filthy, unsanitary furniture and equipment.

The grand jury investigation also shows state officials did nothing when reports came in about problems at Gosnell’s abortion center, which has upset incoming pro-life Governor Tom Corbett.