By BosNewsLife North America Service with reporting by BosNewsLife's Stefan J. Bos
WASHINGTON, USA (BosNewsLife)-- A well-known activist of one of America's most influential Christian pro-life groups has been shot and killed in the U.S state of Michigan, officials confirmed to BosNewsLife in a statement Friday, September 11.
Jim Pouillon, a well known activist in the Owosso area and described as "a friend" of the group Operation Rescue was gunned early Friday, September 11, as he "peacefully held a picture of a baby with the word "Life" outside a high school in Owosso," fellow activists said.
A suspect was reportedly detained some 45 minutes after the shooting and was 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," he added.
The shooting followed "hundreds of death threats" that have been received by Operation Rescue and other pro-life organizations over the past three months, Operation Rescue said.
A news conference was to be held shortly in Washington DC outside the Department of Justice "to discuss this senseless murder and threats against the pro-life community," the group added.
Speakers were to include Troy Newman and Reverend Patrick J. Mahoney of the Chrisitan Defense Coalition, a major conservative group.
"We have received literally hundreds of death threats in the past three months. Our office has been vandalized three times. Just yesterday, the [Federal Bureau of Investigation] 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."