The hubs was home sick yesterday and got to spend all day with me (and learn all of my what-I-do-when-I'm-home-all-day habits), and we saw a story about Scott Roeder's trial on CNN. Roeder is the man that shot a Kansas abortion doctor in May of last year. Today, the AP released news of the jury's decision regarding his case. Here's the AP article (through MPR) regarding his conviction.
The jury only took 37 minutes to decide that Roeder was guilty of first-degree murder (he admitted to killing Tiller twice--once before his trial and once on the stand). When I read this I breathed a big sigh of relief, because the talk on CNN was that Roeder's lawyers were trying to get the judge to consider a voluntary manslaughter conviction. From the AP article:
"Roeder's attorneys were hoping to get a lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter for Roeder, a defense that would have required them to show that Roeder had an unreasonable but honest belief that deadly force was justified."
My amateur, Law and Order-fed understanding of law (and I'd love my lawyer friends and family who read this to comment) leads me to think that if somehow the voluntary manslaughter went through on this case that it would have set a terrible precedent. It would mean that any creepy psycho could get away with murder, as long as he or she thought that their actions were justified ("unreasonable but honest belief"). Think Hitler. Think Pol Pot. Think Stalin. Think Khalid Sheikh Muhammed.
So, thank goodness this guy got what he deserved, and didn't get away with murder.