Mass Shootings "Not the Same Thing:" Santana HS Shooter

Charles "Andy" Williams talked with PBS News Hour about what prompts others to go on shooting sprees

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Nearly 12 years after the tragedy at Santana High School, Charles “Andy” Williams said he can’t explain what prompts others to go on shooting rampages.

    Reporter Miles O’Brien of PBS News Hour recently spoke with Williams who is currently incarcerated at Ironwood Prison.

    Williams pleaded guilty to killing two fellow students and injuring 13 others after the shooting in Santee, Calif. on March 5, 2001.

    “I just thought I was going to make a lot of noise and that’s it and the cops were going to show up,” Williams said adding that he had been suicidal for several months leading up to the shooting.

    Williams used his father’s gun and opened fire in the men’s bathroom on campus. Randy Gordon, 17, and Bryan Zukor, 14, were killed.

    Then 15, Williams says he had been dealing with a number of pressures before the shooting including what he describes as an addiction to painkillers. He reveals he stole them from a friend’s mother.

    Williams also talks of marijuana and alcohol use as well as abuse at the hands of a friend’s stepfather.

    “I can only speak for myself,” he tells O’Brien. “I can’t give you any insight to all these people who, like, went out and, like did all these mass shootings because at least in my mind it’s not the same thing.”

    Later in the interview, Williams goes on to explain how he transitioned from thinking about suicide to planning to shoot someone else.

    Watch it in full at this link.