RALEIGH, North Carolina – A man obsessed with the 1999 Columbine school attack made a videotape showing his father's bloody corpse and describing plans to attack his former high school, then mailed it to a newspaper which posted excerpts on its Web site Friday.
The release of the video was the latest twist in the case, which began when Alvaro Castillo was arrested Wednesday in front of Orange High School in Hillsborough after multiple shots were fired from the parking lot.
Two students suffered minor injuries in the attack.
Investigators say Castillo confessed to his father's slaying after he was taken into custody.
"Don't judge me for what I did," Castillo said in the homemade video mailed to The Chapel Hill News, a twice-weekly newspaper that shares a staff with The News & Observer of Raleigh. "Based on what I did, you might think I'm a monster, a sick freak. ... But I tried to do good things. I tried. I did it. I killed my father. I sacrificed him. He's with the Lord now. I shot him four times."
On the video and in an accompanying letter, which the paper received Thursday via overnight delivery, Castillo stated that he wanted the public to see his video, unlike the so-called "basement tapes" made by Columbine killers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold. The tapes, in which Harris and Klebold discuss their planned attack, have never been made public.
"I sent you the tape because I do not want them locked away just (like) the Basement Tapes," the letter says. "The police would not release them. This will not happen again. I want the world to see myself."
Castillo, 19, is being held without bond at Central Prison in Raleigh on a charge of first-degree murder. He also faces multiple charges stemming from the school attack.
On his way into a courtroom for an initial appearance Thursday, Castillo told reporters he was obsessed with Columbine. The Colorado school's principal has said he received an e-mail from Castillo sent shortly before Wednesday's attack.
Witnesses to the school attack have said the shooter wore a trench coat similar to those worn by the Columbine killers; investigators say they found a shotgun, rifle and pipe bombs in the van Castillo drove to the school.
However, Castillo appears to have aimed mainly at car tires and a window, according to authorities. He did not resist arrest by a sheriff's deputy working at the school and a driver's education teacher who is a former state trooper.
The News & Observer published the text of the letter and a description of the videotape in Friday editions and also posted four excerpts from the videotape on its Web site, www.newsobserver.com. The newspaper released one of those clips to The Associated Press.
The paper's executive editor, Melanie Sill, said Friday that the material was a rare opportunity to hear firsthand from an accused killer. But Sill said the paper decided not to comply with Castillo's request to make the entire tape public. That would have given in to his wish "to join the high school violence pantheon," Sill said in a blog entry.
Among the graphic portions that the paper chose not to share were shots of the sheet-covered corpse of Castillo's father, Rafael Huezo Castillo.
"I'm sorry for the pain I'm going to cause, but I'm not right in the head," the teen said on the tape. "I just want to die. I might get jailed. I might get tortured. I don't know what's going to happen."