On April 4, 2009, 24-year-old Richard Poplawski of Pittsburgh, PA met police officers who were responding to a complaint at his doorway. He was wearing a bulletproof vest when he shot and killed two police officers and gunned down a third who later came to their aid. Poplawski surrendered after a four-hour gun battle.
Polawski had told his friends he was concerned that his guns were going to be seized during the Obama administration. His mother told police her son had been stockpiling guns and ammunition "because he believed that as a result of economic collapse, the police were no longer able to protect society."
Poplawski was found guilty of three counts of first-degree murder. During the penalty phase of the trial Poplawski's attorney argued that he should not be sentenced to death because he had no previous criminal history and he had been raised in a dysfunctional home.
The jury rejected the argument and sentenced Poplawski to death.