Victims: Voices Didn’t Drive Kinkel
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) _ One by one, Kip Kinkel’s victims rose in court Tuesday and told him they thought he was lying when he claimed that voices in his head made him open fire inside his high school cafeteria.
``I’m not falling for this poor, mentally sick rich boy″ explanation, said Jennifer Alldredge, who was shot in the lung and hand.
Ms. Alldredge had been sitting in the cafeteria on May 21, 1998, talking with friends about the surprise birthday party planned for her boyfriend, Jake Ryker. He was also wounded but ended up tackling Kinkel and ending the rampage.
Ms. Alldredge said she was still startled by loud noises, aware of people staring at her scars when she wears a bathing suit and ashamed for what happened to her.
``I hate you, I hate what you have done, I hate what I have become because of you,″ Ms. Alldredge told Kinkel. ``I’m so tired of having all this run my life.″
Kinkel, 17, killed his parents before shooting two fellow students to death and wounding 25 at Springfield High School. In September, he pleaded guilty to four counts of murder and 26 counts of attempted murder.
He agreed to serve 25 years in prison for the murders, but Judge Jack Mattison can impose up to another 195 years for the attempted murders.
``Kip Kinkel must die in prison,″ prosecutor Kent Mortimore said. ``He must never walk free.″
Mattison indicated he would impose the sentence on Wednesday, after the defense sums up its case.
Doctors called by the defense have testified that they found Kinkel to be a paranoid schizophrenic driven to kill by hallucinations.
On Tuesday, parents recounted the horror they had felt at learning their children had been shot and said fear still rules their lives. Students described how their grades had gone down and how they were plagued by nightmares. All asked the judge to sentence Kinkel to spend the rest of his life in prison so they could feel safe.
``If Mr. Kinkel is sitting in prison without possibility of release for the rest of his life, it might _ it just might _ keep some other person from taking a gun to school,″ said Mark Walker, father of Ben Walker, who was killed. ``That would be the only positive thing to come from this.″
Michael Crowley said his son, Ryan, could not bear to be in the courtroom with Kinkel. Ryan was spared death only because Kinkel had run out of bullets before he put a .22-caliber rifle to Ryan’s head and pulled the trigger.
``Don’t tell Kip there is no punishment for putting a gun to Ryan’s forehead,″ Michael Crowley told the judge. ``Don’t tell Ryan it doesn’t matter.″
Kinkel sat slumped forward, looking down, but glanced at the victims from time to time. He obeyed the request of one to look at him as she spoke.
When it was Ryker’s turn to make his statement, he walked up to the defense table and told Kinkel, ``I’m not going to ask you to look at me, I demand it.″
Ryker recounted the pain of being shot and recalled how when Kinkel ran out of ammunition in his rifle and drew a 9mm pistol, Ryker shoved it away. Ryker said he had begun to question whether he should have taken the pistol and killed Kinkel when he had the chance.
``I don’t care if you’re sick, you’re insane or crazy,″ Ryker said. ``I can’t stand here and look at you without wanting to kill you.″