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Judge Tosses 3 of 8 Murder Counts Against West Phila. Abortion Doc

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(Dr. Kermit Gosnell, in file photo.)

(Dr. Kermit Gosnell, in file photo.)

Hanson_Tony--NEW Tony Hanson
Tony Hanson has spent his entire illustrious career at KYW Newsradio,...
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By Tony Hanson

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The judge overseeing the trial of Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell today dismissed three of the eight counts of murder against him.

Gosnell is charged with third-degree in connection with the death of a woman following an abortion, and with seven counts of first-degree murder of babies that prosecutors say were born alive and viable.

Today, three of the first-degree murder counts were dismissed by Judge Jeffrey Minehart.

Defense attorney Jack McMahon challenged that any of the seven fetuses was born alive, arguing there was no evidence of life or voluntary movement in them, identified in court as Baby A through G.

But prosecutor Edward Cameron argued that there was evidence of life in each case: a breath, a movement, a sound. McMahon argued that the alleged evidence was inconclusive and was consistent with involuntary post-mortem spasms.

Judge Minehart ruled that in three of the cases — Babies B, C, and G — the evidence was insufficient and dismissed the cases.

Four first-degree murder counts and the third-degree murder count remain as the defense has begun presenting its case.

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