West Palm Beach — Lillian A. Tamayo, President/CEO of Planned Parenthood of South Florida and the Treasure Coast, today issued the following statement on the conviction of Scott Roeder for first-degree murder in the death of reproductive health care provider Dr. George Tiller in Wichita, KS.
"Today, a jury of Scott Roeder’s peers sent a clear and resounding message to him and all anti-choice extremists: violence and murder cannot be justified by personal beliefs about abortion and will not be tolerated in this country.
“Doctors who perform abortions deserve and must receive the full protection of the law. To that end, we are gratified that Judge Warren Wilbert prohibited the argument that Scott Roeder’s deeply felt anti-abortion beliefs made him less culpable for Dr. Tiller’s murder, therefore not allowing the jury to consider the lesser charge of manslaughter.
“While today’s ruling ensures the person responsible for Dr. Tiller’s murder is held accountable, the tremendous loss of Dr. Tiller will continue to be felt for years to come. For countless women facing dire medical circumstances as a result of complicated life-threatening pregnancies, Dr. Tiller was an invaluable medical provider. His death was an enormous loss for his family and for members of his church, where he was shot to death, as well as for the patients across America who relied on him, his dedicated staff, and the medical Community.
“In the face of continual harassment and intimidation by abortion opponents through much of his career, Dr. Tiller showed unparalleled courage and remained steadfastly committed to providing compassionate care to women and families. Our thoughts are with the Tiller family during this difficult time, and we hope that they are comforted by the fact that his legacy will live on through the countless lives he touched.”
The mission of Planned Parenthood of South Florida and Treasure Coast, Inc. is to provide comprehensive sexual health care through the provision of clinical services, education and advocacy. We do so by understanding and responding to the needs of those seeking our services, and by protecting and respecting the essential privacy rights, dignity and culture of each individual.
Judith Selzer 561.472.9940
January 29, 2010