A militant anti-abortion activist who murdered an obstetrician was sentenced to life in prison on federal charges yesterday. James Kopp is already serving a state term of 25 years to life for the 1998 sniper-style killing of Barnett Slepian, who performed abortions. Kopp is also suspected in four other shootings of doctors in the US and Canada.
Before sentencing, Kopp read a rambling one-hour statement in which he showed no remorse but claimed he intended to wound, not kill, Slepian when he gunned the doctor down in the kitchen of his suburban home. Kopp spent several years on the run after Slepian's murder, traveling to Mexico and Ireland before his capture in France in 2001.