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Gosnell abortion trial: Clerk gave anesthesia, set dosing

Published: Monday, July 6 2015 6:42 p.m. MDT

This undated photo released by the Philadelphia District Attorney's office shows Dr. Kermit Gosnell. Women went to Gosnell to end their pregnancies. Many came away with life-threatening infections and punctured organs; some still had fetal parts inside them when they arrived at nearby hospitals in dire need of emergency care.  (Associated Press) This undated photo released by the Philadelphia District Attorney's office shows Dr. Kermit Gosnell. Women went to Gosnell to end their pregnancies. Many came away with life-threatening infections and punctured organs; some still had fetal parts inside them when they arrived at nearby hospitals in dire need of emergency care. (Associated Press)

PHILADELPHIA — A woman trained only as a medical assistant says she gave anesthesia and changed dosages during her years at a Philadelphia abortion clinic.

Latosha Lewis is among the final prosecution witnesses at the five-week murder trial of Dr. Kermit Gosnell.

Gosnell is charged in the 2009 overdose death of a woman patient, and in the deaths of seven babies allegedly born alive.

Lewis says she sometimes cut the clinic's usual dose of anesthesia and painkillers after seeing patients she feared would not awake from sedation.

She stopped assisting with the abortions by 2008, but still gave out medications as a front-desk clerk.

The 31-year-old Lewis has pleaded guilty to related federal drug charges, and awaits sentencing.

Gosnell's lawyer says there were no live births at the clinic, and argues that the 41-year-old patient died of unforeseen complications.

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