Mom whose son died at birth opens up about accused Angleton doctor

ANGLETON, TX (KTRK) -- A Freeport woman still mourning the death of her son during childbirth wants the Texas Medical Board to permanently restrict her doctor from delivering babies.

Last week, the Board announced a temporary restriction against Dr. Gregory Cooke, an Angleton obstetrician and a gynecologist, from labor and delivery citing baby deaths and a "continuing threat to public health and welfare."

Marissa Sanchez lost her son last October. She is Patient 4 in the Board's Order.

"I felt like it was a nightmare," said Sanchez.

She and her mother, Christina Ramirez, blame Dr. Cooke for the death of the baby, whose name was going to be Zachary.

"I have a brand-new niece and every time I hold her, I think of him and it hurts," Sanchez said.

According to the State's order, Cooke was delayed in getting to Sanchez so he could "get through my office" and finish with patients. At the same time, her baby's heart rate was dropping.

Almost an hour and a half later he arrived, tried three vacuum extractions and then an emergency C-Section. The baby boy was full term, but died.

"He should have been there...because that's his job," said Sanchez, now 19.

"If he's not capable of delivering babies, then he shouldn't," added her mother.

Ultimately the Board panel found Dr. Cooke "engaged in a pattern of mismanagement of labor and delivery, resulting in adverse outcomes including fetal demise." The panel cited five cases that included "lack of adequate attention, unavailability and poor management of labor and delivery."

Last week, Cooke's attorney, Courtney Newton, told Eyewitness News "Although the temporary suspension hearing was held by the medical board, the board did not suspend Dr. Cooke's medical license. Instead they took temporary action, which he is appealing and we anticipate will be resolved at an expedited hearing."

Cooke, licensed in Texas since 1996, had privileges at UTMB-Angleton campus. Those privileges have been suspended, per the Board's order.

He can still practice gynecology.
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