Peter Lanza, the father of the Newtown school killer Adam Lanza spoke publicly for the first time saying he wishes his son had never been born.
Peter Lanza opened up about his son in one of a series of interviews with The New Yorker that began in September.
Adam Lanza, 20, killed his mother, Nancy, before gunning down 20 students, six staff members and himself at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012.
His father said: “You can’t get any more evil. How much do I beat up on myself about the fact that he’s my son? A lot.”
Peter Lanza, a vice president for GE Energy Financial Services, was divorced from Adam’s mother since 2009 and hadn’t seen his son for more than two years at the time of the killings, he told the magazine.
The New Yorker writer Andrew Solomon said Peter Lanza approached him in September.
Peter Lanza was quoted as saying: “I want people to be afraid of the fact that this could happen to them.”
“With hindsight, I know Adam would have killed me in a heartbeat, if he’d had the chance,” Peter 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 says that by the time his son entered middle school, “it was crystal clear something was wrong.”
Adam Lanza was socially awkward, anxious, unable to concentrate and afflicted with insomnia.
The family thought they’d gotten an answer when Adam Lanza was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism, at age 13. But after a severe reaction to the anti-anxiety drug escitalopram, he refused to take any psychotropic drugs thereafter – behavior that profoundly concerned a psychiatric specialist who treated him.
Still, Peter Lanza says he is convinced the Asperger’s diagnosis had little to do with the mass killings. Instead, he said Asperger’s may have been masking schizophrenia.
“Asperger’s makes people unusual, but it doesn’t make people like this,” he told the magazine.
Meanwhile, Peter Lanza refuses to talk about a lingering mystery: where or how his son’s body was disposed of.
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