The father of Sandy Hook mass murderer, Adam Lanza, described his son’s killing spree: “You can’t get any more evil,” and wishes that Adam had never been born.
Adam killed 26 children, his mother, and himself at Sandy Hook Elementary School back in December of 2012.
Peter Lanza confessed in a revealing interview to the New Yorker Magazine that he hadn’t seen his son in two years before the horrific incident. Lanza admitted that he is haunted by the fact that it was his son that murdered all the innocent people and wishes that he took more time in understanding him. He admits that maybe another form of parenting may have provided a better result for Adam, the lives he terminated, and the loved ones who were affected by the unspeakable slaughter.
“Any variation on what I did and how my relationship was had to be good, because no outcome could be worse,” he said. Another time, he said, “You can’t get any more evil,” and added, “How much do I beat up on myself about the fact that he’s my son? A lot.”
Although Peter tortures himself for the catastrophic outcome at Sandy Hook, Adam’s slain mother has been criticized for her parental lapses. Emily Miller, an editor at the Washington Times, thinks that Adam’s mother Nancy, with whom Adam lived, is to blame. “We can’t blame lax gun-control laws, access to mental health treatment, prescription drugs, or video games for Lanza’s terrible killing spree. We can point to a mother who should have been more aware of how sick her son had become and forced treatment.”
Lanza gave the interview to the New Yorker in September, claiming that he hoped that telling the story would give insight to others who have children that are acting out and have a history of mental disorders. “I want people to be afraid of the fact that this could happen to them,” he said. Adam had a long history of problems as a child, including being diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, a high functioning version of autism.
Peter told the New Yorker that he considered Adam to be an undiagnosed schizophrenic, which was hidden by his Asperger’s. “With hindsight, I know Adam would have killed me in a heartbeat, if he’d had the chance,” Lanza said. “I don’t question that for a minute. The reason he shot Nancy four times was one for each of us: one for Nancy; one for him; one for [his brother] Ryan; one for me.” Peter Lanza confessed that as soon as his son started middle school, “It was clear something was wrong.”
As Adam progressed through school, he began having “episodes,” or panic attacks, that prompted more and more visits to the classroom by his parents and more visits to mental healthcare professionals. Unfortunately, Peter, Nancy, and the schools failure to be more proactive was reinforced by the Connecticut state attorney’s report, which concluded that during such episodes, Adam “was more likely to be victimized than to act in violence against another.” They were wrong. According to the report, “Those mental health professionals who saw him did not see anything that would have predicted his future behavior.” Peter said, “Here we are near New York, one of the best locations for mental-health care, and nobody saw this.”
As far as why Adam committed matricide, suicide, and the murder of 26 schoolmates will never be fully understood. Many can be blamed for not preventing the catastrophe. James Knoll, a forensic psychiatrist at SUNY, submits that Adam’s act conveyed a message: “I carry profound hurt–I’ll go ballistic and transfer it onto you.” And that is all the motive we can find.