Sunday, May 31, 2009

Abortionist George Tiller Shot and Killed

Breaking news:

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Late-term abortion doctor George Tiller, a prominent advocate for abortion rights wounded by a protester more than a decade ago, was shot and killed Sunday at his church in Wichita, a city official said.

A City Hall official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to speak about the case told The Associated Press that the 67-year-old doctor was killed Sunday morning at Reformation Lutheran Church.

Police spokesman Gordon Bassham would not confirm the victim's identity pending notification of relatives. He said the shooting occurred at 10:03 a.m. and the gunman fled the scene in a 1993 powder blue Ford Taurus registered in another part of the state.

Bassham said no suspects were in custody. He said it is not clear whether one or more suspects were involved.

Capt. Brent Allred said police were looking for a gunman who fled in a 1993 light blue Ford Taurus registered in Merriam.

Anti-abortion group Operation Rescue issued a statement denouncing the shooting.

Violence is not the answer; shooting a man like George Tiller without giving him the chance to repent of his monstrously evil deeds is not God's way.

May God have mercy on his soul.

Some blog reactions (I'll try to add more as the day progresses):

Mark Shea

Creative Minority Report (plus a second post with statements from many groups)

Andrew Sullivan (who calls this "Christianist Terrorism" and blames the "far right;" get ready, people, because this is exactly the kind of high-profile case that will be used as an excuse to shut down the free speech/free assembly rights of those of us who protest against abortion)

Catholic Fire (with links to her earlier posts)

The American Catholic

Acts of the Apostasy

American Papist

Father Z


freddy said...

It is always the time, but now is especially the time, to say the Chaplet of Mercy.
--mercy for the soul of George Tiller, who was deprived of his chance at final repentance
-- mercy for his family
-- mercy for his murderer
-- mercy for all innocents, born and unborn, who will surely suffer as a result of this.

LarryD said...

Erin - I can't tell you how completely shocked I am about this. A lot of prayers are going to be said tonight, and every night.

Btw - Fr Z has wise words at WDTPRS as well.

Magister Christianus said...

I must refute what libhom has said. Abortion does involve the taking of human lives. Saying so, however, does not have the purpose of "inciting terrorist attacks like the one that happened today." It is entirely consistent for Christians to vehemently oppose abortion for the murder that it is while at the same time vehemently opposing today's act for the murder that it is. Christians must never resort to such acts. Indeed, though there is a human tendency in all of us toward violence, as Jesus demonstrated in the Garden of Gethsemane when His followers tried to use the sword in His defense, the sword is not the way. In fact, Jesus said, "I am the way," and we know that His way is the way of the cross.

I agree with freddy above. We must pray mercy for the soul of George Tiller, his family, his murderer, and all innocents, but we must not refrain from speaking the truth about all forms of murder.

Red Cardigan said...

Wow. This is the first time I've ever had to monitor/delete comments both here and at Crunchy Cons simultaneously. Surreal.

Sorry, Magister Christianus, that I deleted the comment you were responding to--but trolls are coming out of the woodworks on this one.

Update said...

Information has been released about the suspect. It appears that he does have ties to the anti-abortion group "Operation Rescue," as well as prior arrests and convictions. More here:

Anonymous said...

Another site has claimed that my comment above was "cut and paste" so I want to clarify my point above, which I think is pertinent here, ie: that, because of the suspect's criminal record and personal history, the anti-abortion movement is going to receive negative national attention for Dr. Tiller's murder.

I do not have any affiliation to Daily Kos! It is merely an example.

Anonymous said...

From an article posted in the Wichita Eagle today: (here is the full article -

'Suzanne James, former director of victim's services for Shawnee County, said she remembered Roeder.

"He was part of the One Supreme Court, a Freemen group based out of Shawnee County," James said. "He was fanatic about a lot of things. I went to one of his court appearances and thought, 'This guy is dangerous.' There were a lot of red flags that came up about him."

In recent years, someone using the name Scott Roeder has posted anti-Tiller comments on various Internet sites. One post, dated Sept. 3, 2007, and placed on a site called, said that Tiller needed to be "stopped."

"It seems as though what is happening in Kansas could be compared to the 'lawlessness' which is spoken of in the Bible," it said. "Tiller is the concentration camp 'Mengele' of our day and needs to be stopped before he and those who protect him bring judgment upon our nation."'

Anonymous said...

A quote from another article in the Wichita Eagle:

"If this person's connected in any way to the pro-life movement, it'll set us back 20 years because the people of America do not approve of this behavior," said Mark Gietzen of Wichita, who heads the Kansas Coalition for Life and has organized 1,846 consecutive days of protest outside Tiller's clinic.

Anonymous said...

Another article on Dr. Tiller's murder, this one from the Kansas City Star.

By Judy L. Thomas | Kansas City Star

'The suspect in custody for the slaying of Wichita abortion doctor George Tiller was a member of an anti-government group in the 1990s and a staunch opponent of abortion.

Scott P. Roeder, 51, of Merriam, Kan., a Kansas City suburb, was arrested on Interstate 35 near Gardner in suburban Johnson County, Kan., about three hours after the shooting. Tiller was shot to death around 10 a.m. inside Reformation Lutheran Church in Wichita.

In the rear window of the 1993 blue Ford Taurus that he was driving was a red rose, a symbol often used by abortion opponents. On the rear of his car was a Christian fish symbol with the word "Jesus" inside.

Those who know Roeder said he believed that killing abortion doctors was an act of justifiable homicide.'

The entire article is available here: