Unabomber News History

Copyright 2000 The Jerusalem Post

The Jerusalem Post

May 18, 2000, Thursday


LENGTH: 510 words

HEADLINE: Prosecutors: JCC gunman admitted killing

BYLINE: Linda Deutsch, Ap


LOS ANGELES - The white supremacist gunman who allegedly wounded children at a Jewish community center admitted he later killed a Filipino-American postman and said he would kill all nonwhites if he could, the government alleged in court papers seeking the death penalty.

Buford O. Furrow Jr. also declared himself to be "at war with the Jewish-controlled federal government" and said he hoped others would emulate his actions of August 10, federal prosecutors said in a motion filed Tuesday.

"The defendant explicitly stated that he is not sorry for his crimes," they added in filings submitted to US District Judge Nora Manella.

Prosecutors said that two months after his incarceration last summer, Furrow threatened to kill a Latino prison inmate and guards assigned to his housing unit.

In addition, they said, he threatened the life of the woman he referred to as his wife and her son, "including a threat to deliver the son's head to her on a platter."

Furrow is charged with killing letter carrier Joseph Ileto just hours after allegedly wounding three boys, a teenage girl, and a woman at the North Valley Jewish Community Center.

Furrow has pleaded innocent, and his team of public defenders has launched an effort to save him from the death penalty. They have argued that the federal death penalty statute is unconstitutional and that the factors presented to justify it in the Furrow case were too vague.

Among points in the government briefs was evidence of hate-crime motivation. The prosecutors said that after Furrow surrendered to the FBI in Las Vegas he told them he had killed Ileto because he was not white.

"During an interview with law enforcement authorities... the defendant described Joseph Santos Ileto as a 'Chink or Spic' and referred to Mr. Ileto as a 'target of opportunity' to murder,' " the motion said.

Furrow further admitted in the interviews that he wanted to send a message of racial hatred and to instill fear in other nonwhite persons across the country, the document said.

As for the question of whether Furrow would be a future danger, the prosecutors said, "The defendant stated that if he could kill all nonwhite persons, he would not hesitate to do so."

Furrow has a history of treatment for mental illness, but the defense has not yet said if it will present a mental-illness defense. The lawyers are under court order to state their intentions in that regard by June 26 and to disclose the names of any experts they may use to show that Furrow was not in his right mind at the time of the shootings.

The next hearing on the death penalty issue is scheduled for June 5.

A key lawyer on Furrow's defense team is Judy Clarke, a federal public defender who handled the Unabomber case.

Defendant Theodore Kaczynski was allowed to plead guilty and received a life sentence after evidence showed he suffered from schizophrenia. Rulings in the Kaczynski case were cited in the Furrow case briefs.

The next hearing on the death penalty issue is scheduled for June 5.

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