Friday January 29, 2010
Scott Roeder Found Guilty of Tiller Murder
By Kathleen Gilbert
WICHITA, Kansas, January 29, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A Wichita jury found 51-year-old Scott Roeder guilty of first-degree murder Friday for his admitted shooting of late-term abortionist George Tiller last May.
Roeder confessed to shooting the abortionist at point-blank range in the Reformation Lutheran Church, where Tiller, 67, was a parishioner. Tiller was renowned for his burgeoning late-term abortion business, one of few in the United States, where he boasted of having killed 60,000 children in the womb.
Although Roeder’s attorneys had requested consideration of a lighter sentencing for Roeder, at the end of testimony on Thursday, Sedgwick County Judge Warren Wilbert ruled that only premeditated, first-degree murder could be considered as a charge. Roeder, who says he had stalked Tiller since 1999, now faces life in prison.
Immediately following news of the murder, pro-life organizations, both local around the world, issued strong condemnations of the deed that took Tiller’s life.
“We are shocked at this morning’s disturbing news that Mr. Tiller was gunned down,” stated Operation Rescue, the pro-life group that had moved its headquarters to Wichita to fight Tiller’s abortion business. “Operation Rescue has worked for years through peaceful, legal means, and through the proper channels to see him brought to justice.
“We denounce vigilantism and the cowardly act that took place this morning. We pray for Mr. Tiller’s family that they will find comfort and healing that can only be found in Jesus Christ.”
Phill Kline, the former Kansas attorney general who once investigated Tiller’s practice, said he was “stunned by this lawless and violent act which must be condemned and should be met with the full force of law. We join in lifting prayer that God’s grace and presence rest with Dr. Tiller’s family and friends.”
“Kansans for Life deplores the murder of Dr. George Tiller, and we wish to express our deep and sincere sympathy to his family and friends,” stated executive director Mary Kay Culp. “We value life, completely deplore violence, and are shocked and very upset by what happened in Wichita today.”
Other pro-life groups issuing condemnations included: the Chicago-based Pro-Life Action League, American Life League, Priests for Life, the Susan B. Anthony List, Canada’s Campaign Life Coalition, the Family Research Council, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the U.K.’s Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, and the National Right to Life Committee.