Man Who Killed Pro-Life Advocate Protesting Abortions Will Head to Trial Soon

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 1, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Man Who Killed Pro-Life Advocate Protesting Abortions Will Head to Trial Soon

by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 1
, 2009

Owosso, MI ( — Harlan Drake, the man accused of shooting a local businessman and pro-life advocate James Pouillon as he protested abortion at a high school, will head to trial soon. Drake faces a Thursday hearing and his defense attorney says he will ask the judge that the case go directly to trial.

Defense lawyer Robert Ashley told the Associated Press today that there is no reason for the court to hold a hearing on probably cause.

As a result, he will waive Drake’s right to the hearing later this week.

Drake is charged with first-degree murder in the fatal shootings of 63-year-old James Pouillon and 61-year-old Mike Fuoss.

Pouillon was holding a pro-life sign outside Owosso High School, as he frequently did. Drake has already admitted to killing Pouillon and Fuoss and said he killed Pouillon because he didn’t like his use of graphic pictures of babies victimized by abortions.

Drake was hospitalized in a mental hospital shortly after he was apprehended so he could be rehabilitated to the point that he could stand trial.

Still, Ashley told AP that he is considering an insanity defense for the 33-year-old man and he is awaiting psychiatric reports that would aid him in making a decision.

Document release last month say Harlan Drake took his two nieces and a teen boy to school before repeatedly shooting and killing Pouillon and another man.

They say Drake confessed to killing Pouillon and Fuoss, a local businessman with whom he had a feud.

Drake’s statement to police confessing the shooting are in an affidavit that was used to justify a search of his apartment and truck after the shootings, which took place on September 11.

Drake had been declared mentally incompetent to stand trial in September. But late last month, a judge accepted the latest report saying his mental health has improved after getting treatment. Drake’s competency means he understands the charges and can assist his defense.

President Barack Obama came under fire for his slow response to the shooting of the pro-life advocate.

He had quickly issued a response condemning the shooting of abortion practitioner George Tiller, who did late-term abortions in Kansas. Though the Tiller statement came just hours after the shooting, Obama waited days to issue a condemnation of the shooting of Pouillon.

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