Video from the scene of the Tuscon shooting shows that Judge Roll died trying to protect an aide, Ron Barber. According to videotape, the shooter, Jared Loughner, walked straight up to Congresswoman Giffords and shot her. The shooter then starts shooting indiscriminately. Roll pushes the aide down out of the way. As he does so, judge Roll is shot in the back. Roll then falls on Barber, shielding the aide from further rounds. See ABAr Bar Journal report.
Judge Roll was appointed by Pres. George H.W. Bush in 1991. He was a devout Catholic. He was on his way back from Mass on Saturday when he stoppd by the gathering at the Safeway supermarket in Tuscon.
During his career, he has issued some well-known rulings. He was one of several district court judges to find that provisions of the Brady handgun law violated the Tenth Amendment. Later, in 2009, he allowed a lawsuit by MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense Fund) against a local rancher to go forward. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of 16 Mecians who claimed that a rancher held them at gunpoint and threatened them. Because of this ruling, Judge Roll then became the subject of numerous talk shows. He and his family were threatened.
When some of those who made the threats were identified, he declined to press charges.
Judge Roll died a hero.