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Family Research Council shooter sentenced to 25 years in prison

- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 19, 2013

A Virginia man who planned to kill employees at the D.C. headquarters of a conservative Christian organization last summer and shot a security guard there was sentenced Thursday to 25 years in prison.

Prosecutors recommended a 45-year prison sentence for 29-year-old Floyd Lee Corkins II, the first person to be found guilty of terrorism under the District's 2002 Anti-Terrorism Act. But citing Corkins' prior treatment for mental illness, his defense attorney had sought an 11-year sentence.

The Associated Press reported that during a sentencing hearing Thursday, Corkins apologized to the Family Research Council and the security guard he injured.

"I realize resorting to violence to achieve a political end is never OK," he was quoted as saying, adding that he still disagrees with the organization, whose president and a number of its employees were in the courtroom.

Corkins entered the Family Research Council's office lobby with a loaded semiautomatic pistol and shot a security guard as the man wrestled him to the ground to subdue him. He told investigators he wanted to kill employees of the conservative organization because, "I don't like these people, and I don't like what they stand for," court documents state.

In addition to the pistol, Corkins also had with him two fully loaded magazine clips with 15 rounds each, a box containing 50 rounds of 9 mm bullets, and 15 Chick-fil-A sandwiches.

Corkins planned to make a political statement with the sandwiches by smearing them in the faces of his victims. The president of Chick-fil-A openly opposes same-sex marriage, as does the Family Research Council.

Corkins was voluntarily committed to a mental health facility six months before the shooting after experiencing "auditory hallucinations, and having thoughts of killing his parents and conservative right-wing Christians," court documents state.

His defense attorney said he had been doing well on prescribed medications but missed a doctor's appointment the day before the shooting.

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