It is no surprise that it took a Kansas jury just 37 minutes to find Scott Roeder guilty of the murder of George Tiller. Dr Tiller was a provider of legal abortion services, and Roeder is a religious fanatic who thought it was okay to kill him because he disapproved of what Dr Tiller did.
Troy Newman, president of Wichita-based Operation Rescue, which organised protests against Tiller’s clinic, said “pro-life was not on trial. An insane man doing an insane thing was on trial”.
All religions have their fanatics. The good thing with Christianity is the religious leaders always condemn people who murder people in the name of God. In Islam, you often get shall we say a mixed message at best.
Roeder could be considered for parole after 25 years. But prosecutor Nola Foulston said she would seek to ensure that he serve at least 50 years before being eligible for parole. Sentencing was set for March 9.
I don’t think he can ever be let out, as someone convinced they have a right to kill people is always going to be dangerous.
Roeder, the sole defence witness, testified on Thursday that he considered elaborate schemes to stop the doctor, including chopping off his hands, crashing a car into him or sneaking into his home to kill him.
But in the end, Roeder told jurors, the easiest way was to walk into Tiller’s church, put a gun to the doctor’s forehead and pull the trigger.
Tiller was wearing body armour, due to the threats against him – that in itself is a sad reality.