The killer of an abortionist in Pensacola, Florida has been convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 24 years.

A jury found Michael Griffin, 32, guilty for the shooting of David Gunn which happened March 10, 1993 outside the Pensacola Women’s Medical Services clinic.

The Griffin defence, headed by lawyer Bill Eddins, tried in a pre-trial motion to get the judge to agree to an insanity plea. He said Griffin had been brainwashed by John Burt, an alleged former member of the Ku Klux Klan.

“It was not a cold-blooded, premeditated murder but instead was the action of a good, decent human being that had been fed poison by a man who lives off hate,” Griffin’s lawyer argued.

Pro-life groups were not surprised by the verdict, but Don Treshman, of Rescue America, criticized it as a “show trial.” He lashed out at the “seemingly inept defence moves and a guilty mindset which produced an attitude that the jurors were meeting simply to establish how guilty Mr. Griffin was.”

In a statement, Treshman added that “Rescue America certainly does not condone violence, either inside or outside of abortion mills.”

The prosecutor, Jim Murray, called Griffin an assassin. David Gunn Jr. and other pro-abortionists called for further investigation of Burt and other activists.