The man accused of killing George Tiller plans to tell the court that he was justified in shooting the prominent abortionist and says he has no regrets.
"Defending innocent life – that is what prompted me. It is pretty simple," 51-year-old Scott Roeder told The Associated Press in 30-minute phone interview.
And having heard that at least four women who had sought abortions changed their minds and chose to have their babies, Roeder made it clear that he would do it again.
"[E]ven if one changed her mind it would be worth it,” he told AP from jail. “No, I don't have any regrets."
Roeder is currently awaiting trial for the murder of Tiller, who was shot at point-blank during a church service in May. The Kansas City native has also been charged with two counts of aggravated assault for allegedly threatening two ushers who tried to stop him during the May 31 incident at Reformation Lutheran Church in Wichita.
Roeder has pleaded not guilty and is scheduled to go to trial in January.
Though George Tiller was widely scorned for being one of the nation's few providers of late-term abortions, the pro-life community was quick to condemn his murder and distance themselves from the alleged shooter.
Dr. Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission denounced the killing of the abortion provider as “unbiblical, unchristian and un-American.”
The national pro-life women’s group Susan B. Anthony List strongly condemned the shooting as an “anti-life act.”
“The rights of one human being can never be honored by diminishing or ignoring the rights of another,” said Susan B. Anthony List president Majorie Dannenfelser.
According to his ex-wife, Roeder had become “very religious” but in an Old Testament “eye-for-an-eye way.”
On the pro-life Web site of Operation Rescue, someone under the name of Scott Roeder had posted comments that compared Tiller to a Nazi death-camp doctor. The comment said Tiller “needs to be stopped before he and those who protect him bring judgment upon our nation.”
Operation Rescue, in response to Roeder’s arrest, stated that the suspect has “never been a member, contributor, or volunteer” with the pro-life organization. The Wichita-based group also pointed out that even though Roeder posted a comment on the group’s public forum, thousands of people, including those with pro-abortion views, also post on the site.
The group has strongly condemned the murder of Tiller and stressed that it only works to advance the pro-life movement through legal means.