Wednesday, August 19, 2009

"Prayer & Action News" publisher hopes to free Roeder

From RH Reality Check and the Iowa Independent, Dave Leach has prepared a proposed brief in defense of Scott Roeder's actions when he assassinated Dr. George Tiller.

The mindset behind it is the one that drives anti-choice extremists to vandalize and destroy buildings, stalk clinic employees and pro-choice activists, and kill abortion providers: taking a life is wrong, of course, but it saved lives so was necessary. This defense hedges upon Roeder admitting he killed Dr. Tiller (which he has all but said), and while others have tried to use it to justify their killing of abortion providers, it has never been allowed in court because abortion is legal. In fact, restricting a woman's access to abortion is a federal crime under the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances, or FACE, Act. It is this law, designed to protect clinics and patients, that Roeder routinely flaunted and that the FBI did not follow up on in the weeks leading up to Dr. Tiller's death.

Shelley Shannon had tried to use this defense when she shot Dr. Tiller in 1993. It was not allowed in court, and she was not allowed to bring up abortion.

Abortion is an emotional issue, and I for one am glad it isn't brought up, justified, or demonized in a trial dealing with the murder of a health care provider. Abortion isn't on trial: Scott Roeder's actions are.


  1. But why would Leach so strongly want him to plead guilty first. I see no sense in it. I have asked legal eagles and they say Judge will never allow him to use this. And has Scott agreed to it. Would his lawyer advise it. If Scott insisted to use this brief and his public defender would that work?

  2. We don't see Roeder getting to use this defense either (we've got some posts on this coming). As for Roeder wanting to use the brief and his attorneys refusing, the law is clear - that's a call for his attorneys. They are the ones trained in what can and can't properly be done.