Over the past few weeks, hearings have been held to determine whether or not 16-year-old Alec McKinney will be tried as an adult. McKinney and 18-year-old Devon Erickson are accused of shooting up STEM School Highlands Ranch in Colorado where 18-year-old Kendrick Castillo was killed.
During the hearings, the defense put forth that McKinney suffered from mental illness and supposedly heard voices that told him to kill. McKinney was reportedly on medication for this but claimed that he stopped taking the medication because he missed the voices. However, there are some inconsistencies with that testimony as McKinney’s own mother claimed that he would bullshit his way through therapy. The prosecution questioned the supposed auditory hallucinations asking of the voices were self-described or diagnosed.
A number of school shooters have claimed to have heard voices in the past but as far as I can recall, this has never worked as a defense. The one that sticks out in my mind is the shooting at Rocori High School back in 2003. The teenage shooter claimed to have visual and auditory hallucinations that caused him to kill three students, but in the end, it turned out he was just repeating mental health symptoms that he had seen in movies and on TV. He was ruled sane and sentenced to life plus 12 years.
What I think is more indicative of McKinney’s actual intent is that prosecutors allege that McKinney not only studied the Columbine shooting but also tracked down the social media accounts of Sol Pais. So this leads me to believe that this shooting, like most school shootings, is yet another Columbine copycat shooting with McKinney being just another columbiner.