Public Square 01-28-10

This is today’s public square.


Filed under The Public Square

39 responses to “Public Square 01-28-10

  1. tosmarttobegop

    LOL I was just thinking I would do this.
    Put up a new Public Square, new day and new things to talk about!

    OK many things we talk about sound like what we talked about yesterday.
    But we all slept and thought of something else to say!

    I hate snow! That is not new but the snow to come is.

  2. tosmarttobegop

    Well they say we might get to hear Roeder side today, as sickening as that will be.
    Every criminal has their justification that makes perfect sense at least in their mind.

    While a jailer I seldom knew what someone was in jail for, I was told it was for my best interest to not know. Anyway, when I found out this one guy was in for Capital murder it surprised me.
    He was a nice guy and likeable, I mentioned it to him and he explained it was not murder it was self defense!

    He shot a woman who had started shooting at him, he had to shoot her to get her to stop shooting at him!
    After a few moment he add, “well I had just robbed the place…”.

  3. David B

    CNNLIVE has the Roeder trial live video

    And blogging here:

  4. Thunderchild

    Roeder also live on channel 22.

    I’m taking a REAL dislike to his defense attorney.

  5. David B

    Now now, the defense doing what he can for a client who says that he put the bullet inn the Doctor’s head…

    That is the lawyer’s job. Do you think HE likes this?

  6. Thunderchild

    Well I don’t know much about Roeder’s attorney. But from his line of questioning, I suspect he’s another “pro life” nut himself. He seems to be doing his level best to make Roeder into some sort of hero.

    WHY Roeder did what he did is irrelevant.

  7. Roeder is represented by a Public Defender. His ‘line of questions’ are meant to buttress their defense theory, which is about all they have.

    • Hear, hear. AND it’s always easy to attack lawyers, but let’s all remember that we want them on our side when we’re in trouble, so they can’t be all bad.

  8. David B

    TC… it’s his job, regardless of how he feels about it. It’s his duty to do so.

    My attorney may hate my guts, but his duty is to make me out to be the best guy on Earth.

    You know that.

    • Zippy

      This is particularly true of public defenders. They can’t turn down clients, ever.

      In Roeder’s case, it sounds like the attorney is working with what little he has. How do you defend a nut who assassinated a guy during Sunday services, in front of countless witnesses, had obvious premeditated motive, and is proud of it?

    • tosmarttobegop

      Yeah I read on the men’s room wall he hate your guts….good guess.

  9. Thunderchild

    Knock him down Nola!

    SURELY even in Kansas, a jury couldn’t be convinced that someone who felt justified in homicide would have his ESCAPE from justice so carefully planned.

  10. itolduso

    Do not worry. Roeder is going nowhere but to jail.

  11. itolduso

    For life

  12. lillacluvr

    I’m not so convinced. He only needs one person on that jury to give him reasonable doubt. I’m thinking the judge will allow the voluntary manslaughter charge and it will prevail.

    If that happens, God help us all.

    • wicked

      Then will he go after the Supreme Court?

      Roeder believes he’s a martyr. He’ll take that to prison with it and bathe himself in righteous light. Hey, that might make it easier for Bubba to find him!

  13. If I were a member of Tiller’s family, I would feel like a manslaughter conviction was way short of justice in the case. But, on the other hand, doesn’t he sound to meet the criteria for that charge – “a belief, even a false one, that he was in some way protecting life”?

    The murder seemed very well planned, rehersed, etc. But does this criteria rule out the “belief” aspect – I am not thinking that it does, but I don’t know for sure.

    I can see where the upholding of a manslaughter conviction would threaten the life of many more abortion providers.

    • Zippy

      It won’t work. It was clearly meditated, and even if a jury buys the “greater necessity” defense, that wouldn’t make it manslaughter, since manslaughter by definition requires unintentional death.

      And whose life was Tiller threatening in church?

      The only possible outcome that would favor Roeder would be the most extreme one, i.e., that it was “necessary” to shoot him in the head to stop him from doing what he was legally licensed to do.

      I can’t that happening, not even in Wichita.

      P.S. What is WRONG with Nola, trying this dangerous terrorist in WICHITA! Won’t that make Wichita a target for future terrorist attacks?? sarcasm OFF

      • Thanks, Zippy. Should have read up here, before commenting down there. Imminent danger is a requirement? “Unintentional” death, is obviously not even a possibility given the care and planning in the perpetration of this murder.

        I wonder why the defense even acted like such a defense was even a remote hope? I guess if you have nothing, you go with what you can…

  14. I was grateful that Phill Kline was not used in the case. Our former AG was, and continues to be, such a shameless huckster.

    Is Liberty University, where Kline teaches in the law school, the “place of learning” started by Pat Robertson? I believe it is. What a perfect place for Kline.

    • lillacluvr

      No, Liberty University is Jerry Falwell’s bastion of righteousness.

      • lillacluvr

        Jerry Falwell = Pat Robertson – one and the same.

        Like my grandfather used to say – you could throw both of them in a sack and you would not know which one popped up first.

  15. lillacluvr

    I thought I just heard on the NBC channel that the judge is to give instructions to the jury tomorrow morning and voluntary manslaughter was not going to be given?

    Did anyone else hear that?

  16. lillacluvr

    I just saw this on the Cox website….sorry for the lengthy article – I don’t know how to link it.
    Judge rules out manslaughter defense in trial of man who shot abortion doctor
    01-28-2010 06:14 PM CST |By MARIA SUDEKUM FISHER, Associated Press Writer

    WICHITA, Kan. (Associated Press) —
    The judge in the trial of a man accused of murdering an abortion doctor dealt the defense a major setback Thursday, ruling that the jury cannot consider a lesser charge of manslaughter.

    The ruling came hours after Scott Roeder took the stand in his own defense and admitted killing Dr. George Tiller, saying he acted to save the lives of unborn children.

    Roeder’s attorneys had hoped to win a lesser conviction of voluntary manslaughter, which requires them to show their client had an unreasonable but honest belief that deadly force was justified. The charge carries a considerably lighter sentence than murder.

    Roeder testified that he considered elaborate schemes to stop the doctor, including chopping off his hands, crashing a car into him or sneaking into his home to kill him.

    But in the end, Roeder told jurors, the easiest way was to walk into Tiller’s church, put a gun to the man’s forehead and pull the trigger.

    Testifying as the lone defense witness, Roeder calmly explained what he admitted publicly months ago _ that he killed Tiller to save unborn children.

    “Those children were in immediate danger if someone did not stop George Tiller,” Roeder said as the jury watched attentively but without a hint of surprise.

    “They were going to continue to die,” he said. “The babies were going to continue to die.”

    Roeder has pleaded not guilty to murder in the attack at the Wichita church where Tiller was an usher. Witnesses have described how Roeder walked into the building’s foyer shortly after the service started, approached Tiller and fired a single shot before fleeing.

    After Roeder’s testimony, District Judge Warren Wilbert ruled that the jury would not be permitted to consider the manslaughter charge because abortion, including late-term abortion, is legal in Kansas and because Tiller did not pose an imminent threat.

    “There is no immediate danger in the back of a church,” the judge said. He also ruled out a second-degree murder conviction, which does not involve premeditation, because it was clear Roeder planned the killing.

    “It would be hard for a reasonable fact-finder to find anything other than the defendant formulating his belief and then planning on multiple occasions … to carry out his intention to (kill) Dr. Tiller.”

    In a November interview with The Associated Press, Roeder publicly confessed to shooting Tiller, who was one of the few doctors in the country who performed late-term abortions.

    Roeder said he considered other ways of killing Tiller, including driving his car into Tiller’s or shooting him with a shotgun. But he said he was concerned those approaches could hurt others.

    “I did what I thought was needed to be done to protect the children,” Roeder said. “I shot him.”

    He testified that he wrapped the .22-caliber handgun in a piece of cloth and buried it in a rural area. The weapon has not been recovered.

    Prosecutors were careful during the first few days of testimony to avoid the subject of abortion and to focus on the specifics of the shooting. District Judge Warren Wilbert said he did not want the trial to become a debate on abortion, but he said he would give Roeder a great deal of “latitude” when discussing his beliefs because they were integral to his defense.

    Throughout his questioning, Roeder appeared calm and collected, waiting quietly each time prosecutors objected to something he said about medical procedures or late-term abortions, which the judge forbade him from testifying about.

    When asked, for example, to detail the types of abortion procedures he was familiar with, Roeder answered “four or five” and then listed them. In one instance, he described a procedure as the fetus being “torn limb from limb” _ a characterization that prompted a quick objection from prosecutor Nola Foulston.

    During a lengthy cross examination, Foulston tried to keep Roeder’s responses to “yes” or “no.” At one point, Roeder acknowledged that he had been thinking about killing abortion providers since the 1990s, and had considered using a sword to chop off Tiller’s hands or killing him at his home.

    Roeder testified though that he thought chopping off Tiller’s hands was not a good solution because Tiller would still be able to train people. He said Tiller’s home was not a good location because it was in a gated community and difficult to access.

    Roeder also said he had gone to Reformation Lutheran Church on three other occasions to kill Tiller, once the evening before and once the week before Tiller was shot, and once in 2008, but Tiller was not at the church on those occasions.

    Earlier Thursday, District Judge Warren Wilbert barred former Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline from testifying after listening to a preview of Kline’s testimony without the jury present.

    Kline investigated Tiller’s clinic, Women’s Health Care Services, in 2006 because he suspected Tiller was violating state laws pertaining to late-term abortion. The case was later dropped because of jurisdictional issues.

    Wilbert said much of Kline’s testimony would have amounted to “exactly what this court seeks to avoid.”

    “I said I would not allow this courtroom to turn into a forum or a referendum on abortion,” Wilbert said.

    The defense had hoped to show Roeder was frustrated by Kline’s failure to prosecute Tiller and was influenced in part by Kline’s belief that Tiller was breaking the law.


    Associated Press Writer Roxana Hegeman contributed to this report.

  17. This story is even covered by the NYTimes. In the Times article they indicate the manslaughter criteria is:

    “an unreasonable but honest belief that circumstances existed that justified deadly force.”

    I don’t guess I am still clear on how Roeder’s crime did not meet this standard, or what extra factors did not allow the application of this standard.

  18. tosmarttobegop

    Roeder by his own admission said he started thinking about killing Dr, Tiller in 1993.
    And had continued to think about it ever since.

    The claim of killing to prevent some one from killing you or another. ’
    And the thought or conviction comes in 1993 by it done in 2008; the warranty on that thought has expired.
    If I believe rightfully or not that Monkeyhawk is going to kill me in 1993 but do not act on it till 15 years longer. My believe is not valid if in 15 years he has not attempted to kill me. That dog doesn’t hunt.

    The claim that it was the outcome of the trial of Dr. Tiller and his acquittal and Phil the betrayer of the office of the AG. Failing at his attempt to file charges. Has nothing to do with Roeder’s thoughts of the only way to stop Tiller is to kill him when the thoughts were formed almost a decade before.

    Nola is not that smooth, often tripping and stumbling her way through to get to a point.
    Today she did manage to get to the points needed to show this was not a spur of the moment and immediate cause. He went several times armed and passed on occasions, he admit to have been to the church to scout it out.

    She showed he had already had several weapons that he could have used such as a nine millimeter and a SKS rifle. Roeder did admit on at least one occasion he was armed with the nine millimeter in early years at the Church. But he said the problem was he did not want to endanger anyone else or do harm to them.
    So he was waiting for the chance to be alone with Dr. Tiller.

    He wanted to save babies…. He want to kill Tiller to save babies…. He wants to since 1993…. The immediacy of the cause and belief seems to have waited for a good time and place? 15 years??

    It is not man’s place to take human life it is God’s!

    I would get in trouble if I was the D.A.

    “Mr. Roeder earlier in direct you said that it is not man’s place to take human life it is God’s.
    Is that correct as to what you said?

    Roeder: Yes that is correct…except in self defense or to defense others.

    Mr. Roeder did God tell you to kill Dr. Tiller?


    Mr. Roeder then are you God?


    Mr. Roeder were you then playing God?


    So Mr. Roeder you took a human life, you are not God and God did not tell you to kill.
    Can you name anyone you saved by the cold blooded killing of Dr. Tiller?


    • wicked

      Earlier today, I heard some about this on KSN news via the website. The judge explained that imminent meant much the same as immediate. He explained that Tiller was not in his clinic doing “business as usual” (my phrase), but was at the church, far from his business.

      What has to be shown is that just because you believe something is wrong, even if you know something is being done is wrong, killing someone for that isn’t going to work because it isn’t imminent. For instance, if I believe my son-in-law has been choking my grandson (his stepson), I can’t plot to kill him. If I should see him doing it, that would be imminent danger, and I could probably use that defense and maintain it. Hypothetically, of course. By using anything (ball bat, big rock, even a knife–something handy but not a gun unless I carried one all the time, otherwise that would show premeditation, I think), I might not kill him, but I’d damned sure stop him.

      BTW, I don’t think this would work if the victim was a dog. 😉

  19. David B

    If some stroke of jury-lightning would strike, Roeder would be charged by the feds for civil rights violations – this would not be then end of it. Not until this guy is in jail.

    • I think he should be charged for civil rights violations, regardless. A precedent must be set. There have been others that have shot doctors. Where are they now? Not all of them are still locked up as they should be for life. The federal authorities should go after him no matter what happens in this trial. They should let the other whackos know that this will not be tolerated.

      Though frankly I don’t think that there is any punishment that would have stopped Roeder. He is fanatical, like a suicide bomber. Reason has long left him and logic probably has always escaped him.

    • fnord

      I think a federal investigation is underway. Isn’t it pretty normal for the local, county, state to finish their case and federal to come along later with additional consequences?

      • Not necessarily, fnord. Many times, the federal authorities don’t bother at all.

        David, while I hope your post is true, there is a lack of knowledge on my part about application of the criminal provisions of the various Civil Rights acts to a murder of a person who was not killed due to race, ethnicity, religion; in other words, someone whose situation does not fall within a ‘suspect classification’. I’ve some doubt about the application of such laws in this case.

  20. wicked

    I just went to KSN to check the weather and found this:

    WICHITA, Kansas (AP) – The judge in the murder trial of the confessed killer of Kansas abortion provider Dr. George Tiller says the jury cannot consider lesser charges of voluntary manslaughter or second-degree murder.

    Scott Roeder has admitted killing Tiller but has pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder and aggravated assault. His defense team argued for the lesser charges, arguing that Roeder believed he had to kill Tiller to save the lives of unborn children.

    Voluntary manslaughter in Kansas is defined as “an unreasonable but honest belief that circumstances existed that justified deadly force.” It also involves proving imminent danger of an unlawful act. (my bold)

    Judge Warren Wilbert ruled on the possible charges after the defense rested Thursday afternoon.

  21. David B

    Okay, but what about the WEATHER?

  22. David B

    Norwegians say that there is no bad weather, just bad clothes.