From Sweet Kid to Mass Murderer?

Hours before the shooting on January 8, 2011, police say Loughner had film developed showing him dressed in a red G-string, posing with a Glock pistol. At 4:12 a.m., Loughner posted "Goodbye friends" on his MySpace page. At 7:27 a.m., he bought ammunition. At 7:30 a.m., he was stopped by police for running a red light and let go with a warning. At 10:10 a.m., he opened fire on Representative Gabrielle Giffords and her crowd at her "Congress on Your Corner" event at a Tucson supermarket, killing six people, including a Federal judge and a 9-year-old girl.

Brandon Gunnoe is an anchor for KVOA in Tucson. He gives a tour of some of the key locations where the tragedy unfolded, including the Loughner family home.

See what neighbors thought of Jared Loughner.

 

Few people knew Loughner better than Zane, who was one of Jared's close friends. He says he noticed a big change in him in February 2010.

"I met Jared when I was a senior in high school," Zane says. "He was a very intelligent person. He was very talented. Anything Jared found an interest in, he learned everything; he would obsess on it.

"Jared Loughner enjoyed shooting guns. When I first met Jared, I felt extremely comfortable shooting firearms with him. I saw a dramatic change in Jared's behavior. He started out just a normal guy with little quirks, and as time when on, those quirks turned to the point where I wasn't sure [he] was aware of what was going on. Jared started thinking we were plotting against him, and at that point, if he lost control and was holding a loaded gun, I didn't want to be there. Jared Loughner went from being a very receptive individual to being very close-minded. Jared Loughner, by the end of me knowing him, was an absolute nihilist. I mean, if you look at his mug shot, it didn't even look like him. It was a monster in that picture.

[AD]"He was a terrorist. There were warning signs, I guess, and that's part of the guilt I feel, but at the same time, I don't know who would've listened to me if I had said anything," Zane says.

Zane tells Dr. Phil he and Loughner used to hang out at Zane's house. He'd been to Loughner's house a few times, but only briefly. He says Loughner's parents would just peek their heads around to see who it was, but then they'd go back to whatever they were doing.

"You said he would deprive himself of sleep. Did he say why?" Dr. Phil asks.

"Jared did not believe in reality," Zane says. "Like I said, he was a nihilist. What we would perceive as real: this chair, you and I talking right now " these didn't exist to Jared, and he would deprive himself of sleep to experience lucid dreaming. Like, he'd tell me, ‘I'm two-and-a-half days without sleep.'"

"Did he change as he got further into no sleep?"

"Absolutely," he says.

"Because we know, from a psychological perspective, one of the things to cause someone to lose touch with reality, become disoriented, get highly confused and even hallucinate or become delusional would be lack of sleep. If you keep someone awake long enough, they're going to lose orientation. Did you see that in him?" Dr. Phil asks.

"Absolutely," Zane says. He explains you had to be careful what you said around Jared because he would become argumentative over everything.

Dr. Phil explains that a nihilist generally is described as someone who has a complete rejection of established laws, institution, and favors anarchy and terrorism. "You mean it in that literal sense?"

"Yes. Jared Loughner believed in nothing," Zane says.

Zane explains what he thinks Jared really wanted.

 

Dr. Phil asks Zane if there's anything else he wants to say.

"I'm very sorry," he says, "and I feel in some way, I don't know what I could've done, but every night, I can't sleep, because is there something I could've done? I have 3-year-old sisters, and I see that 9-year-old girl, and it just breaks my heart."

Dr. Phil assures Zane that he has no reason to feel guilty or wonder if he could've done something to stop Loughner. "I've been in psychology and the mental health profession for 35 years, and I am sad to tell you that I don't have the ability to predict which troubled person is likely to turn violent and do something like this. Everybody looks at what happens after the fact and says, ‘Wow, look at what he said, look at what he did.' But for every one of those people who actually carry that through, there are tens of thousands who have similar thoughts, similar verbalizations, and who never do anything. So, your ability to foresee this would be very, very difficult, just as it would even for his family and other friends around him … I hope you take care of yourself in the middle of all this and recognize that he made the choice, not you."

[AD]"Thank you," he says.