UPDATE: According to one person who spoke with the New York Times, Dear reportedly praised the Army of God and others who commit violence against abortion providers:
A number of people who knew Mr. Dear said he was a staunch abortion opponent, though another ex-wife, Pamela Ross, said that he did not obsess on the subject. After his arrest, Mr. Dear said “no more baby parts” to investigators, a law enforcement official said.
One person who spoke with him extensively about his religious views said Mr. Dear, who is 57, had praised people who attacked abortion providers, saying they were doing “God’s work.” In 2009, said the person, who spoke on the condition of anonymity out of concerns for the privacy of the family, Mr. Dear described as “heroes” members of the Army of God, a loosely organized group of anti-abortion extremists that has claimed responsibility for a number of killings and bombings.
An activist associated with the militant anti-abortion group Army of God, which has been linked to several terrorist attacks on abortion providers, has posted a brief statement on his website declaring that Planned Parenthood got what it deserved with last week’s shooting at a Colorado Springs clinic that left three dead:
Planned Parenthood Colorado Springs
Robert Lewis Dear aside, Planned Parenthood murders helpless preborn children. These murderous pigs at Planned Parenthood are babykillers and they reap what they sow. In this case, Planned Parenthood selling of aborted baby parts came back to bite them.
Anyone who supports abortion has the blood of babies on their hands.
Virginia-based anti-abortion activist Donald Spitz, who runs the “Army of God” website, similarly stated after Dr. George Tiller was murdered that the he “reaped what he sowed” and hosts a page celebrating those who have been convicted of murdering and attempting to murder abortion doctors. Spitz also promotes the 1993 “Defensive Action Statement,” signed by 34 anti-choice activists including Hill, which says that those who kill abortion providers “ought to be acquitted of the charges” against them because people should take “all godly action necessary to defend innocent human life including the use of force.”
MSNBC’s Irin Carmon spoke with Spitz, who told her that anti-choice groups that condemned the Colorado Springs shooting are “hypocritical” and “into political correctness way too far.” Spitz said that he was not against the shooter’s actions and will be “reaching out to him.”
“There are no innocent people in Planned Parenthood,” he said. “They’re in there for a reason.”
One notorious anti-abortion activist, who has long been an open supporter of violence against abortion providers, broke with the movement in offering direct support to Dear.
Donald Spitz, who runs the Army of God website and is based in Virginia, said of his fellow anti-abortion activists’ condemnations of violence, “They say that all the time. I think they’re hypocritical.”
While many groups insist violence against abortion providers is counterproductive to their cause, Spitz suggested such rhetoric is disingenuous. Referring to Scott Roeder, who murdered abortion provider George Tiller and who Spitz calls a friend, Spitz said, “How could that be counterproductive when he stopped them from providing abortions? They’ve lost their mind. They’re into political correctness way too far.”
As for Spitz’s own reaction, “I think Planned Parenthood is an evil organization, so I didn’t lose any sleep when I heard about it,” Spitz said. “They sell baby parts, and they reap what they sow, and now they’re complaining about it.”
He added, “There are no innocent people in Planned Parenthood. They’re in there for a reason.”
Spitz said he wrote to Dear on Monday to offer his support.
“I told him, I was reaching out to him, it appears that everybody is against him. I’m not against him,” he said.
Spitz was given pause, though, by the fact that the three killed on Friday weren’t involved in providing abortion. “It’s one thing to kill an abortionist who’s killing babies,” Spitz said. “What he did, I don’t know.”