It was an open and shut case, and never hinged on whether or not Scott Roeder, 51, shot Dr. George Tiller in the head while the doctor was attending a church service, because he admitted that he did just that (and there was a church full of witnesses.) Instead:
Roeder even admitted that he had planned the killing. The defendant’s lawyers argued only that the criminal charge should be something short of murder– voluntary manslaughter, perhaps– because Roeder said that he had killed Tiller in order to save others– unborn children– from harm.
Clearly, Tiller posed no harm to “unborn children” as he sat in the pews of a Lutheran church, in addition to the fact that Tiller’s practice, providing abortion services, is legal, even in Kansas. The jury was therefore told it could not consider “voluntary manslaughter” or other lesser charges, and so they swiftly convicted on premeditated first degree murder.
Tiller’s family released this statement:
“The family of Dr. George Tiller would like to thank the jury, District Attorney Nola Foulston and her office and law enforcement for their service in this difficult matter. Once again, a Sedgwick County jury has reached a just verdict. We also want to thank George’s countless friends and supporters in Wichita and around the country who have offered their comfort.
At this time we hope that George can be remembered for his legacy of service to women, the help he provided for those who needed it and the love and happiness he provided us as a husband, father and grandfather.”
So will this guy wind up a martyr to the anti-abortion movement, or will most people on the right discard him?