Scott Roeder, Possible Abortion Practitioner George Tiller Shooter, Gives Interview
by Steven Ertelt
June 5, 2009
Wichita, KS (LifeNews.com) — Suspected killer of late-term abortion practitioner George Tiller, Scott Roeder, gave an interview late Thursday night from his jail cell. Roeder asked for prayers for his family as they endure the media attention resulted from his alleged killing of Tiller on Sunday at his church.
Roeder, who has no affiliation with any pro-life groups, has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with Tiller’s death.
Still, he told the Associated Press in an interview that he feels the criminal justice system is treating him unfairly.
"I haven’t been convicted of anything, and I am being treated as a criminal," Roeder told AP from the Sedgwick County Jail.
Roeder was asked to discuss the Tiller shooting and he refused to do so, AP indicated.
The 51-year-old Kansas man has been identified as a member of anti-government militia groups and that appears to be the motivation for killing Tiller rather than any link to pro-life organizations attempting to protect women and children from abortions.
In the interview, Roeder said he was upset how he is being portrayed with a "broad brush" as harboring anti-government views.
"I want people to stop and think: It is not anti-government; it is anti-corrupt government," Roeder said.
Roeder added that he appreciated the prayers for himself and his family.
He will face a preliminary court hearing scheduled for June 16. Meanwhile, District Judge Warren Wilbert , on Thursday, set Roeder’s bond at $5 million, reversing a previous decision to jail Roeder without bail.
If convicted on the murder charge, Roeder would face a mandatory life sentence in prison and would not be eligible for parole for 25 years.
Lindsey Roeder, who divorced Roeder in 1996 after 10 years of marriage, told the Topeka Capital-Journal that Roeder had a mental evaluation in the mid 1990s and suffered from mental illness. She said he always held extremist anti-government views.
Although he did not believe he had any mental health issues, everyone else did," she told the newspaper.
He just felt these were his views, she said of his position supporting the killing of people who kill others, such as abortion practitioners. "He followed the view of an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.
"It scared me," she said of his approach, which has been linked to militia and anti-government groups and attitudes.
Meanwhile, Roeder’s family released a statement, according to the newspaper, saying. We are shocked, horrified and filled with sadness at the death of Dr. Tiller and the circumstances surrounding it that may have involved Scott Roeder."
The statement confirmed the mental health problems, saying We know Scott as a kind and loving son, brother and father who suffered from mental illness at various times in his life."
After serving 16 months in prison following a parole violation after officials found a license plate altered with anti-government slogans and bombmaking materials in his car and home, a Shawnee County District Court judge said Roeder presented a "threat of danger to the public."
Law enforcement officials told the Capital Journal newspaper at the time that Roeder was a "loving" but "obsessed" man, but maintained they didn’t expect him to actually hurt anyone.
Roeder has no links to any legitimate pro-life group other than a couple of postings on a public forum on a pro-life web site. Otherwise, he has never been a volunteer of, staff member of or in any way associated with either national, state or local pro-life groups.
That and hundreds of condemnations of the Tiller shooting from pro-life groups hasn’t stopped abortion advocates from exploiting Tiller’s death for political gain and blaming pro-life advocates for his death.
The Obama administration has also come under fire for ignoring alleged vandalism of another abortion center prior to the shooting.
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