One of the two students who opened fire at STEM School Highlands Ranch in Colorado in May told police he targeted kids who made fun of his gender identity, The Associated Press reports.
Alec McKinney, 16, and Devon Erickson, 18, opened fire at the school on May 7, killing 18-year-old Kendrick Castillo, who was hailed as a hero for stopping one of the shooters.
McKinney told police that he was transitioning and prefers male pronouns.
Court documents obtained by the AP show that McKinney planned the attack.
In interviews with police, McKinney "said he wanted the kids at the school to experience bad things, have to suffer from trauma like he has had to in his life” and that “he wanted everyone in that school to suffer and realize that the world is a bad place.”
He told police he targeted students who made fun of him and "called him names and said he was disgusting for trying to be a guy" and for referring to him as a “she.”
Attorneys want case moved to juvenile court:
McKinney was charged as an adult but attorneys told The AP that they will ask a judge to move his case to juvenile court.
Neither suspect has entered a plea yet.
Both Erickson and McKinney have been charged with 40 counts, including murder and attempted murder.
Castillo was the only student who was killed, though eight others were wounded.
Documents shed light on what happened:
According to court documents obtained by the AP, both suspects told police they discussed the attack on Snapchat the night before. Erickson told police that McKinney was suicidal and was seeking revenge.
Both teens told police they went to Erickson’s home during lunch and broke into his parents’ safe to get three handguns, a rifle, and ammo.
Both teens did cocaine before the attack, according to the documents. They then put the guns in a guitar case and backpack and returned to school.
Erickson said he pulled out a handgun and told everyone to get down, but his gun went off when he was rushed by two students.
McKinney claimed he used two handguns to fire at students before he was tackled by a student and a teacher. He was able to get away and grabbed a third gun and fled with the intention of killing himself but could not work the gun’s safety.
Police said Erickson claimed he was going to stop McKinney but he "couldn't articulate how or why he never told an adult."