Noisy Anti-Abortion Protestor Gets Muted at Colorado Capitol

A boisterous heckler tangled with Colorado State Patrol officers at an anti-Amendment 48 news conference Tuesday and, as if on cue, tempers flared for a rolling video camera.

The obstreperous anti-abortion protester, identified in media
reports as Morrison-resident John Wiechel, attempted to shout down Gov.
Bill Ritter who was speaking on the steps of the Capitol in opposition
to the proposed state constitutional amendment that would confer legal
rights on fertilized eggs.

VIDEO: Life & FertilizationVIDEO: Life & Fertilization

Wiechel’s first mistake was drawing the attention of troopers who
entered the scene from stage left playing the classic good cop-bad cop
routine. Then, apparently getting confused about whom he was there to
shout about – unborn babies or homosexuals – Wiechel’s brief encounter
with law enforcement went awry when the bad cop momentarily went off
the deep end. Quickly composing himself, the male trooper slapped
handcuffs on the loquacious protester who was escorted into the capitol
followed by a ragtag band of "babies are people too!!!" sign-wielding

The incident was captured for posterity on video by an anti-abortion blogger:


According to a source on the scene, a more restrained Wiechel returned to the news conference without further incident.

Ritter, a staunch Catholic and socially conservative democrat who
drew concern from reproductive rights advocates when he ran for
governor in 2006, said the proposed amendment was too extreme and would
create medical and legal nightmares because of its overly broad
language to define a fertilized human egg as a person. Amendment 48 is widely believed to be a direct assault on Roe vs. Wade and, should it pass, would be used to challenge the 35-year law that legalizes abortion.

The governor was joined at the noisy ‘No on 48′ event by former
Colorado Supreme Court Justice Jean Dubofsky, former Republican state
Senator Dottie Wham and a bevy of medical and legal professionals.


Like this story? Your $10 tax-deductible contribution helps support our research, reporting, and analysis.

For more information or to schedule an interview with contact

  • truth

    What’s wrong with a guy who wants to voice his opinion? It appears that he was silenced illegally and unconstitutionally. As far as his comments about homosexuals – he was referring to the homosexuals who were allowed to do the same thing he was doing in the same exact place. They weren’t taken away in handcuffs. You may not agree that he was in disagreement with the opposition of Amendment 48, but he has a right (as we all do) to stand and voice his opinion as long as he is not violent.

    Good for him – exercising his 1st Amendment Rights even though the  Colorado SS Soldiers didn’t like it!

  • invalid-0

    You know, there is such a thing as verbal assult moron! People have the right to assemble and protest as long as they do so PEACEFULLY– I have YET to see a pro-lifer nitwit accomplish that! Personally, *I* have been harassed, threated with hell, had my LIFE threatened, had my car vandelized, been refused birth-control, threated with being fired, had my personal space MASSIVELY violated with fundies bible-thumpers boxing me in (waving their fists and signs two inches from my face *no shit really!*)spat at, called every kind of whore, bitch, devil worshiper, murderer, child abuser, at la.
    People that run in the loonie anti-choice crowd are the biggest liers, back-stabers, bullies, and the most violent people I ever met who would do *anything*, no matter how low, to get their narrow-minded world veiw and people into power. Not to mention wanting to remove the freedom from everyone whom does not believe as they do.
    The only thing that whould make them happy is if America become a theocracy– And anyone who was a free-thinker, gay, had *gasp* sex without marriage, or of the ‘wrong’ religon would, be jailed, bannised from the country or murdered. Does any remember history of the Inquistion? Hitler? The Crusades?
    Get a life ‘Truth’, and your ilk, and if this site bothers you so much– Stay the hell away– We WON’T miss you.
    I personally worry that if McCain gets into power hate-crimes will go way up, along with a grave redution of personal liberty and freedom…
    “Give me liberty, or give me death!” Patrick Henry
    Ta for now, love this site btw…