The Washington state high school student who gunned down his cousin and three other people before turning the weapon on himself last year apparently killed his victims because he wanted them with him "on the other side," according to investigation documents released Tuesday.
In text messages sent to a friend before the Oct. 24 rampage at Marysville-Pilchuck High School, 15-year-old shooter Jaylen Fryberg asks the friend to apologize to the families of those he would go on to kill.
"But I needed my ride or dies with me on the other side," Fryberg said in a text minutes before the shooting, according to police documents. He apologized again, but said "I needed to do this tho ... I wasn’t happy. And I need my crew with me too. I’m sorry. I love you," the texts read.
The group text was sent at 10:37 a.m., according to police documents. The first 911 call reporting a shooting was received at 10:39 a.m.
Fryberg killed three 14-year-old girls — Gia Soriano, Zoe Galasso and Shaylee Chuckulnaskit — and a 15-year-old cousin, Andrew Fryberg, 15, when he stood up during lunch and opened fire on the group with a .40-caliber handgun.
"Nothing in this report changes the facts of that day. This was a homicide. It was premeditated and calculated."
Another boy, Nate Hatch, was shot in the face but survived. Jaylen Fryberg reloaded the Beretta PX4 Storm handgun before shooting himself as he was confronted by a first-year teacher trying to stop him, according to police.
The text sent out before the shooting asks friends to tell the family of another person "that I didn't want to go alone." That person's name is redacted in the report.
In the 1,400 pages of documents released Tuesday detailing the Snohomish County Multiple Agency Response Team investigation, associates said Jaylen Fryberg got into a fight with someone one or two weeks before the shooting, and was upset after he and his girlfriend had recently broken up. A motive in the killing was not spelled out.
Marysville Police Chief Rick Smith said in a statement after the police documents were released that "nothing in this report changes the facts of that day. This was a homicide. It was premeditated and calculated."
"The shooter was intent on killing those at the table and then himself. And were it not for the actions of one teacher, there would have been additional deaths,” he said.