By Dave Andrusko
The attorney for the wife of West Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell says his client, Pearl Gosnell, is considering pleading guilty. Mrs. Gosnell stands charged of participating in an illegal late-term abortion, conspiracy, and being part of a corrupt organization.
The possibility that Pearl Gosnell would not go to trial with her husband was disclosed by her attorney F. Michael Medway during a status hearing this morning before Common Pleas Court Judge Benjamin Lerner, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported online.
Medway said he had been negotiating with the District Attorney’s Office. The Inquirer’s Joseph A. Slobodzian wrote that “Assistant District Attorneys Joanne Pescatore and Christine Wechsler would not elaborate in court on the plea talks, and all parties are barred by a gag order from speaking with reporters.”
Six of the 10 defendants who worked at Gosnell’s Women’s Medical Society abortion clinic have pleaded guilty in deals with the prosecution with one–Tina Baldwin—pleading guilty to lesser charges in an agreement that requires her to testify against Kermit Gosnell.
Gosnell, who is in jail without bail, is charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of seven babies aborted alive and then killed when their spines were severed; and with third-degree murder in the case of the 41-year-old Karnamaya Mongar, who died from a drug overdose reportedly prescribed by Gosnell.
Referring to the Grand Jury’s 281-page report, prosecutors called Gosnell’s abortion clinic “a baby charnel house,” with fetal remains strewn around an office that reeked of cat urine. While Gosnell is charged with the murders of “only” seven babies, the grand jury concluded he had killed hundreds of viable babies born alive, but kept no records. At least one other woman died at Gosnell’s clinic, the grand jury concluded.
Prosecutors have said that Gosnell, who was never certified as an OB/GYN, made millions off of poor immigrant women.
Pearl Gosnell’s legal situation “raises issues different from those of eight employees of Kermit Gosnell’s clinic because of spousal privilege,” Slobodzian explained. “Under the law, spouses cannot be forced to testify against each other in criminal or civil court proceedings.”
Medway told Judge Lerner he should known his client’s decision by December 1, the date on which Medway asked for a new status hearing.
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