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  • Police: Man shot churchgoers over liberal views

    http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5j...65vZAD92740DO4

    Police: Man shot churchgoers over liberal views

    By DUNCAN MANSFIELD – 1 hour ago

    KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — An out-of-work truck driver accused of opening fire at a Unitarian church, killing two people, left behind a note suggesting that he targeted the congregation out of hatred for its liberal policies, including its acceptance of gays, authorities said Monday.

    A four-page letter found in Jim D. Adkisson's small SUV indicated he intentionally targeted the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church because, the police chief said, "he hated the liberal movement" and was upset with "liberals in general as well as gays."

    Adkisson, a 58-year-old truck driver on the verge of losing his food stamps, had 76 rounds with him when he entered the church and pulled a shotgun from a guitar case during a children's performance of the musical "Annie."

    The Knoxville News Sentinel reported Monday that Adkisson may also have chosen the church because his ex-wife was a former longtime member of the congregation.

    He remained jailed Monday on $1 million bond after being charged with one-count of murder. More charges are expected. Four victims were hospitalized in critical condition.

    The attack Sunday morning lasted only minutes. But the anger behind it may have been building for months, if not years.

    "It appears that what brought him to this horrible event was his lack of being able to obtain a job, his frustration over that, and his stated hatred for the liberal movement," Police Chief Sterling Owen said.

    Adkisson was a loner who hates "blacks, gays and anyone different from him," longtime acquaintance Carol Smallwood of Alice, Texas, told the newspaper.

    Authorities said Adkisson's criminal record consisted of only two drunken driving citations. But court records reviewed by The Associated Press show that his former wife obtained an order of protection in March 2000 while the two were still married and living in the Knoxville suburb of Powell.

    Alexander wrote in requesting the order that Adkisson threatened "to blow my brains out and then blow his own brains out." She told a judge that she was "in fear for my life and what he might do."

    Calls to the home of the ex-wife, Liza Alexander, were not answered Monday, and the voice mailbox was full.

    In Adkisson's letter, which police have not released, "he indicated ... that he expected to be in there (the church) shooting people until the police arrived and that he fully expected to be killed by the responding police," Owen said. "He certainly intended to take a lot of casualties."

    The Unitarian-Universalist church advocates for women's rights and gay rights and has provided sanctuary for political refugees. It also has fed the homeless and founded a chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, according to its Web site.

    Owen said authorities believe the suspect had gone to the Unitarian church because of "some publicity in the recent past regarding its liberal stance on things."

    Owen did not identify the publicity, but the Rev. Chris Buice, the church's pastor, is a frequent contributor to the Knoxville newspaper.

    "In the midst of political and religious controversy, I choose to love my neighbors as myself," Buice wrote in an op-ed piece published in March. "Ultimately, I believe that tolerance, compassion and respect are the qualities we need to keep Knoxville and East Tennessee beautiful."

    Adkisson told authorities he had no next of kin or family. He lived about a 20-minute drive from the Unitarian church — one of three in the Knoxville area. The church is in an established neighborhood of older, upscale homes and several other houses of worship near the University of Tennessee.

    The police chief said the suspect bought the shotgun at a pawn shop about a month ago, and he wrote the letter in the last week or so. A .38-caliber handgun was found in his home.

    About 200 people from throughout the community were watching 25 children performing "Annie" when the suspect entered the church, pulled out a semiautomatic shotgun and fired three fatal blasts.

    Church member Barbara Kemper said the gunman shouted "hateful words" before he opened fire, but police investigators said other witnesses didn't recall him saying anything.

    A burly usher, 60-year-old Greg McKendry, was hailed as a hero for shielding others from gunfire as other church members rushed to wrestle the gunman to the ground. Police arrived at 10:21 a.m., three minutes after getting the 911 call and arrested Adkisson.

    No children were hurt, but eight people were shot, including the two who died — McKendry and Linda Kraeger, 61.

    When the first shot rang out at the rear of the sanctuary, many church members thought it might be part of the play or a glitch in the public address system. Some laughed before turning around to see the shooter and his first victims covered in blood.

    Jamie Parkey crawled under the pews with his daughter and mother when the second and third shots were fired. He saw several men rush the suspect.

    "I jumped up to join them," he told AP Television News. "When I got there, they were already wrestling with him. The gun was in the air. Somebody grabbed the gun and we just kind of dog-piled him to the floor. I knew a police suppression hold, and I sat on him until police came."

    Parkey's wife, Amy Broyles, was visiting the church to see her daughter in the play. She said Adkisson "was a man who was hurt in the world and feeling that nothing was going his way," she said. "He turned the gun on people who were mostly likely to treat him lovingly and compassionately and be the ones to help someone in that situation."

    Investigators were reviewing several video recordings of the performance by parents and church members. Owen said police would not release the videos or Adkisson's letter until they have been analyzed for evidence.

    Adkisson, who faces his next court hearing Aug. 5, was on active duty with the Army beginning in 1974. Army records show he was a helicopter repairman, rising from a private to specialist and then returning to private before being discharged in late 1977.
    What is Perseverance?
    -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
    -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
    -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


    BOP - BPA - ICE

  • #2
    A burly usher, 60-year-old Greg McKendry, was hailed as a hero for shielding others from gunfire as other church members rushed to wrestle the gunman to the ground.
    Sounds like libs are pretty courageous folks.

    Comment


    • #3
      Those "Christian Values" at work again. Lmao...

      Comment


      • #4
        A friend of mine is in charge of RE here at the local UU church and she said that there is a nationwide vigil at all UU churches at 7:00 tonight. (Local time.)

        She had also said that there was a pretty violent message on the machine at their church that they received last week and in light of what happened yesterday they turned it over to the police.
        http://hoppeshomestead.blogspot.com/

        The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government. – Thomas Jefferson

        Comment


        • #5
          This isn't gonna go over well at the Pearly Gates..

          Comment


          • #6
            One more reason to always carry off duty... EVEN AT CHURCH!
            ...Did you call the Boys in Blue or the Man in Tan?

            Comment


            • #7
              why during a childrens skit? come on now. I hate to see this
              "Friendly Fire, isn't"

              Comment


              • #8
                Yep.

                And they managed to do it without shooting anyone.

                Originally posted by cmr164 View Post
                Sounds like libs are pretty courageous folks.
                Hatred never ceases by hatred, but by love alone is healed.
                Happiness never decreases by being shared. -- Buddhist quotation
                A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. -- Proverbs 15:1

                Comment


                • #9
                  This is what too much FOX news will do to you.
                  Two people can keep a secret if one of them is dead.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ManInTan View Post
                    One more reason to always carry off duty... EVEN AT CHURCH!
                    That's sad but true, you're not safe in school, church, anywhere...
                    Sucks that the kid had to go through that...


                    PS...Liberals rule!...
                    sigpic

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      It's bad enough he hated liberals, but he was racist too.

                      Adkisson was a loner who hates "blacks, gays and anyone different from him," longtime acquaintance Carol Smallwood of Alice, Texas, told the newspaper.
                      What is Perseverance?
                      -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
                      -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
                      -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


                      BOP - BPA - ICE

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I'm so sorry to hear this. I used to be a member of the local UU church (for those who might not know, the UU is multi-faith church that accepts christians, pagans, buddhists, etc). They are some of the most tolerant and loving people you will ever meet. Very sad to see them targeted like this.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          How would having a gun have prevented the deaths in this case?

                          From what I can tell in the story this happened too fast. And hey, the man was brought down by

                          ahem

                          unarmed liberals.

                          You know, those pansy, wimpy liberals.

                          I tell you, I am bookmarking this story. Anyone here ever again tries to stereotype liberals as wimps, I'm gonna copy and paste this story all over again.

                          Go LIBS!
                          Hatred never ceases by hatred, but by love alone is healed.
                          Happiness never decreases by being shared. -- Buddhist quotation
                          A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. -- Proverbs 15:1

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Ruby why do hate guns so much. You seem to go out of your way to insult gun owners or paint them as toothless rednecks. They might have saved everyone if an armed and trained parishoner was there. As it stands i'm just proud to see an unarmed man shield his fellow worshipers and the rest take the bad guy down. Gives me more faith in my fellow man.
                            The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Ruby, you do know that the UU church isn't solely populated by Liberals, right?

                              I have a few conservative buddies who go to this church (not this exact one, but UU). In fact, the two services I went to had very few people with real "liberal" ideologies.... actually, come to think of it, none of the folks I met were liberals (as they're defined today)... That doesn't surprise me, though.... as most Liberals today are all about pushing God out of this country. Either way.... it's not just liberals who attend these churches.

                              And there were several gay, "gun-toting" members as well (these guys were characters... loved talking to them) but they were active in much of the typical fund raising, volunteering, etc. They did push against the death penalty, though.


                              I think it's absolutely fantastic that these guys stood up and stopped this piece of sh*t. It's horrible that one of the guys who stopped him was killed, but I bet he saved the lives of many others.

                              Guns or no guns, liberals or conservatives, they stood up and got the job done in one fashion or another.... and THAT is what counts.
                              Last edited by Chit2001; 07-29-2008, 12:07 AM.
                              1*

                              Comment

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