DC Sniper: 'I Was a Ghoul'

Lee Boyd Malvo speaks 10 years after rampage that paralyzed DC

By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 30, 2012 11:27 AM CDT

(Newser) – It's been a decade since Lee Boyd Malvo and John Allen Muhammad terrorized the nation's capital, randomly shooting 13 people in a bloody three-week rampage that killed 10. The Washington Post sits down with Malvo, the surviving half of the so-called DC Sniper, and finds a pensive 27-year-old no longer under Muhammad's spell, deeply regretful of his actions and the lives he ruined—including his own. Highlights from the lengthy interviews, conducted at a Supermax prison in rural Virginia and via telephone:

  • What he remembers most from the spree: The eyes of Ted Franklin, husband of victim Linda Franklin, who was killed at a Home Depot. “It is the worst sort of pain I have ever seen in my life. 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.”

  • On his 17-year-old self: “I was a monster. If you look up the definition, that’s what a monster is. I was a ghoul. I was a thief. I stole people’s lives. I did someone else’s bidding just because they said so.”
  • On his relationship with Muhammad: "I leaned on him, I trusted him. I was unable to distinguish between Muhammad the father I had wanted and Muhammad the nervous wreck that was falling to pieces. He understood how to motivate me by giving approval or denying approval. It’s very subtle. It wasn’t violent at all. It’s like what a pimp does to a woman.”
  • On vomiting after killing his first victim: “That was the beginning of the end. I knew I was going to die one way or the other, that going down this path ended with my death.”
  • His message to his victims: "We can never change what happened. Don’t allow me and my actions to continue to victimize you for the rest of your life. It may sound cold, but it’s not. It’s the only sound thing I can offer. You and you alone have the power to control that. And, you take the power away from this other person, this monster, and you take control.”
Click through for the Post's full piece.

In a Dec. 30, 2002, file photo, Lee Boyd Malvo is escorted out of Fairfax Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court after a hearing in Fairfax, Va.
In a Dec. 30, 2002, file photo, Lee Boyd Malvo is escorted out of Fairfax Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court after a hearing in Fairfax, Va.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh/file)
Sniper suspect Lee Boyd Malvo appears in a Sunday, Nov. 9, 2003, in Chesapeake, Va.
Sniper suspect Lee Boyd Malvo appears in a Sunday, Nov. 9, 2003, in Chesapeake, Va.   (AP Photo/Chesapeake Sheriff's office)
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