UPDATE: Authorities have identified the shooter as Harlan J. Drake, 33, of Owosso, Michigan. Drake gunned down pro-life activist Jim Pouillon, and also killed Mike Fuoss, the owner of a local gravel pit. Prosecutors say Drake also intended to kill a third man, a realtor, and that he had grudges against all three men. According to authorities, Pouillon was targeted for his pro-life views.
Drake has been charged with two counts of first degree premeditated murder. He has also been charges with one count of felony firearm and carrying a firearm with unlawful intent. He is being held without bail at the Shiawassee county jail. [Watch for further updates.]
Operation Rescue and the Christian Defense Coalition to hold a press conference in Washington, D.C. today to discuss the murder and other threats against pro-life leaders
Owosso, MI – A pro-life activist gunned down this morning as he peacefully held a picture of a baby with the word “Life” outside a high school in Owosso, Michigan. The victim is Jim Pouillon, a well known activist in the Owosso area and a friend of Operation Rescue.
A suspect was arrested about 45 minutes after the shooting and is now in police custody.
“We are stunned by Jim’s murder. We extend our condolences to the family and share in their grief over his loss. His life was characterized by his love and concern of the vulnerable, and he will be greatly missed,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman.
“We denounce this senseless act of violence in the strongest terms, and pray that this murderer will be swiftly brought to justice.”
This shooting comes in the wake of hundreds of death threats that have been received by Operation Rescue and other pro-life organizations over the past three months.
Operation Rescue and the Christian Defense Coalition will hold a press conference today in Washington DC to discuss this senseless murder and threats against the pro-life community.
Press Conference Details:
Friday, September 11, 2009
Outside the U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Speakers will include Troy Newman, Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney of the Chrisitan Defense Coalition, and other pro-life leaders.
“We have received literally hundreds of death threats in the past three months. Our office has been vandalized three times. Just yesterday, the FBI was in our office and picked up a stack of threatening letters that we received,” said Newman. “We denounce violence in the strongest terms. The bloodshed must stop both inside and outside of the abortion clinics.”
Read e-mailed death threats to Operation Rescue
Listen to a sample of telephonic death threats to Operation Rescue (Caution, strong and disturbing language.)