Washington sniper: I was a monster
Convicted serial sniper Lee Boyd Malvo says the devastated reaction of a victim's husband made him feel like "the worst piece of scum".
Malvo expresses remorse in the interview with The Washington Post and urged the families of victims to try and forget about him and his partner John Allen Muhammad so they can move on. Tuesday (local time) marks the 10th anniversary of the beginning of the deadly spree in the Washington area carried out by Malvo and John Allen Muhammad. The pair has been linked to 27 shootings across the country, including 10 fatal attacks in the Washington area.
Malvo, 27, told the Post in a rare interview that the look on the face of victim Linda Franklin's husband right after she was shot stands out in his memory of the rampage. Franklin, a 47-year-old FBI analyst, was killed as she and her husband loaded supplies outside a Home Depot store in Falls Church, Virginia.
"They are penetrating," Malvo said of Ted Franklin's eyes. "It is the worst sort of pain I have ever seen in my life. His eyes .... Words do not possess the depth in which to fully convey that emotion and what I felt when I saw it. ... You feel like the worst piece of scum on the planet."
Malvo, who was born in Jamaica, was 17 when he went on the cross-country killing spree with Muhammad. Malvo is serving a life sentence with no parole in Virginia. Muhammad was executed in Virginia in 2009.
The sniper-style attacks all but paralysed the US capital, as people were shot at random while going about their everyday life - pumping gas, buying groceries, and for one young boy, as he went to school. The shooters used a high-powered rifle, firing from the trunk of a modified Chevy Caprice until they were tracked down at a Maryland rest stop.
Malvo also repeated previous assertions that he was manipulated by the older Muhammad. But he acknowledges: "I was a monster."
Malvo has declined to respond to many media requests, including letters from The Associated Press. He was interviewed in 2010 for a cable TV special.
When asked by the Post what he would say to victims' families, the remorseful Malvo said there's no way to properly convey an apology.
"We can never change what happened," Malvo said. "There's nothing that I can say except don't allow me and my actions to continue to victimise you for the rest of your life."
He added: "Don't allow myself or Muhammad to continue to make you a victim for the rest of your life. It isn't worth it."
Linda Franklin's father, Charles Moore, was incredulous about the idea that victims' relatives would be able to forget about what Malvo and Muhammad did.
"There's no way. I can't believe that. No one can go through something like that," Moore said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press.
Moore said he believes his daughter's slaying contributed to his wife's death several years later.
"What he did just destroyed my family. I'll never be able to put it aside. Never," he said.
"There are things that stand out in your life that you think about. I'm 83 years old and I'll carry it to my grave."