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Gosnell gets third life sentence for babies during late-term abortions

May 16, 2013 at 12:25 AM   |   Comments

PHILADELPHIA, May 15 (UPI) -- Dr. Kermit Gosnell, convicted in Philadelphia of killing newborns after late-term abortions, thanked his judge and lawyer after his final sentencing Wednesday.

Gosnell, 72, refused the opportunity to make a statement as Common Pleas Judge Jeffrey Minehart imposed a third consecutive life sentence without chance for parole the day after giving him two other life terms, CNN reported.

Minehart also sentenced Gosnell Wednesday to 2 1/2 to 5 years in the case of Karnamaya Mongar, 41, who died of a drug overdose during an abortion performed at the doctor's West Philadelphia clinic, CNN said.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Gosnell told his lawyer, Jack McMahon, "Good job."

If Gosnell was quiet, McMahon and Philadelphia prosecutors, who have been unable to publicly comment on the case because of a gag order, were not. McMahon, speaking outside the court, said Gosnell was the victim of a "lynching by the media prior to the trial."

District Attorney Seth Williams appeared at a news conference with police involved in the investigation and the prosecutors who tried the case.

"I will not mince words, and this is not mere hyperbole, Kermit Gosnell at some point became a monster," Williams said. "Any doctor who cuts into the necks severing the spinal cords of living, breathing babies, who could otherwise survive with proper medical attention, is a murderer and a monster."

Gosnell could have faced the death penalty for the first-degree murder of the newborns, but his lawyers negotiated a deal after Monday's verdict in which he gave up his right to appeal in return for life in prison. He was also convicted of involuntary manslaughter for the death of Mongar, who received an overdose of Demerol, and of more than 200 counts of failing to abide by Pennsylvania's 24-hour waiting period.

Jurors also spoke out for the first time. Foreman David Misko described Gosnell as "the worst example of an abortion doctor in the world, obviously."

During the sentencing, Assistant District Attorney David Cameron told the judge that McMahon is negotiating a plea with federal prosecutors for a charge of improper prescribing of drugs at Gosnell's clinic. That would end the criminal case, although Gosnell also faces civil lawsuits.

Bernard Smalley, who represents Mongar's family, spoke during the sentencing. He said the death occurred shortly after she and her family arrived in the United States after years in a refugee camp in Nepal.

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