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Seattle Pacific University Alleged Shooter Stopped Taking Meds

/ Source: Associated Press

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SEATTLE - The man charged with killing one student and wounding two others at a small Seattle college last week had stopped taking his medications because he "wanted to feel the hate," and he detailed his plans in a handwritten journal for two weeks before the attack, a prosecutor said Tuesday.

"I just want people to die, and I'm gonna die with them!" Aaron Ybarra wrote the day of the shooting, King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg said.

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Satterberg released new details of the allegations as he filed charges of first-degree murder, attempted murder and assault against Ybarra, 26. Satterberg is seeking a sentence of life in prison.

Authorities say Ybarra has been held without bail and is on suicide watch at the county jail since a student pepper-sprayed him and ended the rampage Thursday at Seattle Pacific University.

Ybarra's lawyer, Ramona Brandes, has said her client has a long history of mental issues but is aware of the trauma caused by the shooting and is sorry. She said Tuesday that no decision has been made yet on whether he will seek a mental-illness defense.

"We have to look at his symptoms he manifested in the past, his treatment and his jail records to determine whether his mental illness arises to the level of a defense. These are choices he's going to be involved in," Brandes told The Seattle Times. "He wasn't on his meds and he committed an action that is incomprehensible. Had he been on his meds, would this have happened? We'll continue asking that for all time."

Image: Aaron Ybarra
Shooting suspect Aaron Ybarra is led in chains to a court hearing at a King County Jail courtroom on June 6, in Seattle.Elaine Thompson / AP

The journal, recovered by police from Ybarra's truck that was parked near the shooting, reflects Ybarra's admiration for the school shooters at Virginia Tech and Columbine High School but does not clearly explain why he targeted the Seattle college, Satterberg said.

Ybarra considered other universities — Washington State, Eastern Washington and Central Washington were mentioned — but apparently dismissed them because they were too far away, the prosecutor said.

Ybarra fired just two shots but carried nearly 50 shells and had 25 more in his truck, because he planned to kill many more people, Satterberg said. He also had a large hunting knife and planned to slit his own throat, the detective's statement said.

Ybarra gave an hour-long police interview after his arrest, saying he didn't specifically target any of the students but had a "hatred for the world in general," the probable cause statement said. He told detectives he had been diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder and transient psychosis but had stopped taking his medicine about six months earlier because he wanted to feel his hate, it said.

- The Associated Press

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