“A former clinic worker testified Thursday that he routinely saw babies born alive and then killed with scissors at an inner-city Philadelphia clinic that catered to minorities, the poor and women with late-term pregnancies.
But unlicensed doctor Stephen Massof also thought clinic owner Kermit Gosnell was trying to help vulnerable women seeking abortions. Dr. Gosnell, 72, is on trial for capital murder, charged with killing a woman patient and seven newborns.
“I believe that Dr. Gosnell was honestly trying to help women and protect them from abuse and neglect,” Massof, a prosecution witness, said on cross-examination.
The statement came in questioning about why Gosnell kept fetal samples, including severed feet, in jars at the clinic. Massof said that Gosnell measured the feet to estimate gestational age, which could help confirm or disprove sexual assault allegations.
“Abortion provider Kermit Gosnell, 72, is charged with killing a woman patient and seven babies allegedly born alive, and with performing illegal, late-term abortions at his thriving inner-city clinic. Co-defendant Eileen O’Neill, 56, of Phoenixville, is charged with billing as a doctor and participating in a corrupt organization.
Eight former employees have pleaded guilty, some to third-degree murder, and have testified this month about bizarre, often-chaotic practices at the clinic.
Ashley Baldwin spoke Thursday of starting there at age 15 through a high school training program, and soon assisting with abortions and administering intravenous drugs. Baldwin, now 22, said she worked nearly 50-hour weeks, often well past midnight, when abortions were routinely performed.
At least twice, she saw aborted babies move after the procedure, only to have Gosnell explain that it an involuntary response. In one case, she said, “the chest was moving.”