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US

Teen killer sobs as confession played in court

Woodham
Woodham after court Thursday   

Woodham on tape: 'I'm not insane'

June 11, 1998
Web posted at: 3:36 p.m. EDT (1936 GMT)

In this story:

HATTIESBURG, Mississippi (CNN) -- In a videotaped confession played at his murder trial Thursday, student Luke Woodham said he went on a shooting rampage at his high school in a jealous rage over a girl who broke up with him.

Jurors watched as Woodham admitted on tape killing two classmates and wounding seven others, while the real Woodham sat nearby, sometimes crying so loudly his recorded words were difficult to hear.

"I'm not insane, sir," the 17-year-old said in the interview videotaped by police last October. "I knew what I was doing. I was just pissed at the time."

"I'm probably going to get pretty famous," Woodham said.

Woodham describes killing his mother
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vxtreme Luke Woodham's confession to the Pearl, Mississippi, police

The taped confession was played as prosecutors closed out their case against the teen-ager accused of running into Pearl High School on October 1 and opening fire with a rifle.

The defense, which is expected to use an insanity defense, was to begin its case in the afternoon. Woodham was not expected to take the stand. The trial could go to the jury as early as Friday.

'Suddenly broke up with me'

Witness
A student demonstrates in court Wednesday how Woodham allegedly pointed and fired the rifle at him   

Twelve students, including the seven who were wounded and survived, testified on Wednesday. Most identified Woodham as the gunman who killed two students, including Christina Menefee, a girl he had dated.

In his taped confession to the school shootings Woodham said he and Menefee, 16, had dated about a year before the shootings. The girl, shot in the chest, was the first student to die.

He said before the two stopped dating, "I had somebody to love and somebody to love me. Then she suddenly broke up with me."

Woodham said he dated Menefee again briefly but he became depressed and they again broke up.

Jennifer Duke
Jennifer Duke recounted how Woodham had shot a girl   

The other girl killed was Lydia Dew, 17. "Ask anybody at school, I really hated the world," he told the police interviewer.

As he watched himself on the courtroom television, Woodham sobbed loudly and said, "It's not right." At times his wails drowned out his taped comments.

Woodham was convicted and sentenced to life in prison last week in the death of his 50-year-old mother, Mary, hours before the school shootings.

Correspondent Brian Cabell contributed to this report.

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