This Day In Crime History

August 19, 1993: Abortion Doctor George Tiller Shot In Both Arms

Later in 2009, Tiller was shot again. He was executed in the lobby of his Lutheran church in Wichita while serving as an usher. 

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On August 19, 1993, an abortion doctor named George Tiller was shot in both of his arms by an abortion protester.

Tiller was the medical director of Women's Health Care Services in Wichita, Kansas.  The office was one of only three clinics nationwide that provided  late-term abortions, a controversial procedure. This made him and the the clinic the target of numerous protests. The clinic was firebombed in 1986. As it was being rebuilt from that incident, Tiller put up a sign that read, "Hell no, we won't go."

Then, in 1993, anti-abortion activist Rachelle "Shelley" Shannon shot the doctor five times while he was in his car, backing up out of the clinic driveway. The bullets hit both his arms.  Tiller was wounded, but not seriously, and he was released after minor surgery several hours after the shooting.

Shannon had previously written letters of support to convicted murderer Michael Griffin, who had murdered Dr. David Gunn, another abortion physician. The woman testified that she didn’t think it was wrong to kill Tiller. She was sentenced to 11 years in prison, and later sentenced to an additional 20 years for taking part in fire and acid attacks on abortion clinics.

In 2009, Tiller was shot again. He was executed in the lobby of his Lutheran church in Wichita while serving as an usher. An anti-abortion extremist named Scott Roeder shot in the side of the head on May 31.

Both television host Bill O'Reilly and Congressman Robert Dornan described Tiller as "Tiller the Baby Killer” before his death.

Pictured above is a memorial of flowers placed in front of the Reformation Lutheran Church on June 1, 2009 in Wichita, Kansas. 

[Photo: Getty Images]

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