CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

"Doctor Avoids Death Penalty in Murders at His Clinic"

From the New York Times:

Kermit Gosnell, the doctor convicted of murdering babies after failed abortions in his Philadelphia clinic, avoided the death penalty on Tuesday by agreeing to a sentence of life in prison without parole.

. . .

Prosecutors had said from the start of the trial that they would seek the death penalty because of the “aggravated” circumstances of the crimes Dr. Gosnell was charged with: murder of more than one person and the young age of the victims.

But the district attorney’s willingness to compromise on a life-without-parole sentence seemed a calculation about the difficulty of persuading the same 12 jurors to agree on capital punishment after they spent 10 days sifting evidence and acquitted Dr. Gosnell on one first-degree murder charge.

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