The more we learn about the history of alleged Tiller murderer Scott Roeder’s history of harassing women’s health clinics, the more shocking it is that Operation Rescue would have allowed any contact with Roeder in recent months at all — and, perhaps more disturbingly, that the FBI hadn’t prosecuted him for FACE Act violations before he killed Tiller.
In an extensive interview with the office manager "Jeffrey Peterson" of the Central Family Medicine Clinic in Kansas City, Rachel Maddow last night established that Roeder had repeatedly visited and vandalized that clinic — a federal crime under the FACE Act, that the FBI had been alerted to Roeder’s harassment of that clinic, and that the FBI did nothing about it. The day before allegedly killing Tiller, Roeder was at the Central Family Medicine Clinic, gluing the clinics’ locks shut.
As Peterson explains, after incidents of violence six years ago, the clinic furnished both video and still photos of Roeder’s vandalization to the FBI, including a photo of Roeder’s license plate. The FBI told clinic staff that that evidence wasn’t sufficient for prosecution, but that they would have "a talk" with Roeder about his actions. Roeder then left the clinic alone for six years, only to return this May. After his appearance at the clinic — again, gluing locks and shouting "baby killer" at a clinic staffer — Peterson alerted the FBI, who didn’t yet prosecute the crime. The FBI now says that they have an open investigation examining the incident.
As Maddow says, the FBI had the authority to prosecute then and there, and had the full backing of the FACE Act to do so. Why did they fail to ensure public safety in so basic a way?