After Murder of Doctor George Tiller – Attorney General Directs US Marshals To Protect Abortion Clinics

June 1, 2009

(ChattahBox) — In this nation with so many issues that divide us, nothing perhaps is more polarizing then the abortion issue.  Yesterday Dr. George Tiller, a Kansas doctor (of all places) whose clinic received national attention for performing late-term abortions, was shot to death as he entered his Wichita church for Sunday service.  Dr. Tiller was  a man of great conviction and a hero to many but just a cold blooded killer to others in the anti-abortion debate.  As you can imagine, Dr. Tiller,  67, and his family have suffered years of harassment and threats, including  having his clinic bombed in 1985, and a pro-lifer shooting him in both arms in 1993. His clinic was the site of the 1991 “Summer of Mercy” protests marked by mass demonstrations and arrests.  Lately Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline, an abortion opponent tried to put Dr. Tiller out of business by alleging he had gotten second opinions from a doctor who was essentially an employee of his, not independent as state law requires.  A jury however acquitted him of all 19 misdemeanor counts against him in March.

Whatever motivated or whoever influenced the killer, his convictions didn’t seem to include standing up and taking responsibility for his act. Instead he choose to flee the scene and apparently try to avoid punishment. Several witnesses to the shooting attempted to intervene and chase down Tiller’s killer, but he was able to flee in a blue Ford Taurus. Several hours later a suspect 51-year-old Scott Roeder was arrested near Gardner, Kansas on Interstate 35, reports the Kansas City Star.  The suspect is currently facing one count of murder and two counts of aggravated assault for threatening onlookers who tried to intervene.

The journalistic investigation to tie Roeder to radical pro-life groups is already underway with some sighting potential Operation Rescue, an anti-abortion group based in Wichita. Roeder also was allegedly a subscriber to Prayer and Action News, a magazine that advocated the justifiable homicide position, said publisher Dave Leach, an anti-abortion activist from Des Moines, Iowa. He told the The Kansas City Star

“I met him once, and he wrote to me a few times,” Leach said. “I remember that he was sympathetic to our cause, but I don’t remember any details.”

Leach said he met Roeder in Topeka when he went there to visit Shelley Shannon, who was in prison for the 1993 shooting of Tiller.

“He told me about a lot of conspiracy stuff and showed me how to take the magnetic strip out of a five-dollar bill,” Leach said. “He said it was to keep the government from tracking your money.”

Roeder, who in the 1990s was a manufacturing assemblyman, also was involved in the “Freemen” movement.

“Freemen” was a term adopted by those who claimed sovereignty from government jurisdiction and operated under their own legal system, which they called common-law courts. Adherents declared themselves exempt from laws, regulations and taxes and often filed liens against judges, prosecutors and others, claiming that money was owed to them as compensation.

Perhaps anticipating copy-cat killings, US Attorney General Eric Holder is dispatching US Marshals to protect abortion clinic and doctors around the country. Holder also issued the following statement:

The murder of Doctor George Tiller is an abhorrent act of violence, and his family is in our thoughts and prayers at this tragic moment. Federal law enforcement is coordinating with local law enforcement officials in Kansas on the investigation of this crime, and I have directed the United States Marshals Service to offer protection to other appropriate people and facilities around the nation. The Department of Justice will work to bring the perpetrator of this crime to justice. As a precautionary measure, we will also take appropriate steps to help prevent any related acts of violence from occurring.


One Response to “After Murder of Doctor George Tiller – Attorney General Directs US Marshals To Protect Abortion Clinics”

  1. After Murder of Doctor George Tiller - Attorney General Directs US Marshals To Protect Abortion Clinics < It’s all about the trends on June 1st, 2009 1:46 pm

    […] just a cold blooded killer to others in the anti-abortion debate.  As you can imagine, Dr. Tiller, click for more var gaJsHost = ((“https:” == document.location.protocol) ? “https://ssl.” : […]

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