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School Shooting Suspect's Computers Off-Limits

Posted April 2, 2007

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— Authorities won't be able to take information from personal computers belonging to a man charged with killing his father and opening fire at a local high school last August.

Meanwhile, no decision has been made on whether to seek the death penalty against Alvaro Rafael Castillo.

Castillo, 19, of Hillsborough, is charged with murder in the Aug. 30 shooting death of his father, Rafael Huezo Castillo, and faces a slew of charges in connection with a shooting the same day outside Orange High School that injured two students.

Castillo's lawyer requested last month that Orange County investigators be denied access to information on two personal computers taken from Castillo's home after his arrest. The deputies didn't have probable cause to seize the computers, the lawyer said.

Orange County District Attorney Jim Woodall said Monday he wouldn't oppose the request, acknowleding they shouldn't have been taken because no reason for taking the computers was included in the search warrant application submitted by investigators.

"We don't think there was anything significant there to begin with," Woodall said. "We think there are other ways to get that information."

He also said he needs more information from the defense before deciding whether to pursue the death penalty against Castillo.

Defense attorney James Williams said he has new information about Castillo's mental health. The teen has been undergoing psychiatric evaluations since his arrest.

"I thought it was important to listen to what he had to say," Woodall said.

Castillo publicly acknowledged after his arrest that he was obsessed with the 1999 Columbine High School shooting in Colorado. Before the shooting, he sent an e-mail to the principal at Columbine High to announce his intention to commit a similar act and mailed a videotaped confession to a Chapel Hill newspaper.

The next hearing in the case is set for April 25.

33 Comments

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  • mrmayhem87 Apr 19, 2007

    This is Bull. I am a senior at OHS and I think he should be executed. I can't believe the judge won't let the investigators onto the comps. The Judge is an idiot.

  • watchdog Apr 3, 2007

    pat75: I never said anything about spending less on social programs or anything of the like. You can spend all the money you want to on social programs, but if the people you are targeting don't take interest in the programs and/or participate then would it (or would it not) be wiser to invest that money in other ways to help the community?

    It is not necessarily the amount of money you spend, rather it is the amount of participation you get from the community.

  • yacs Apr 3, 2007

    Killing is wrong.

  • TheBullCity Apr 3, 2007

    "Keep in mind, most of your crime takes place in the lower income areas of town."

    So spending less on social programs and more on law enforcement makes crime go up or down?

  • watchdog Apr 2, 2007

    Also, you're comparing the largest population area (South) with the smallest (Northeast).

  • watchdog Apr 2, 2007

    independent_thinker: What is the poverty levels of TX versus MA or the Northeast versus the South? Keep in mind, most of your crime takes place in the lower income areas of town. I'd be willing to guess that the South has a larger low income area than the Northeast, just look at the cost of living difference.

  • For the U.S.A. Apr 2, 2007

    Unlawful search and seazure law is out of date by todays standards and anything that will help put a criminal behind bars should be allowed, including trying their lawyers of purgury!!

  • Derrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr Apr 2, 2007

    Did someone say redhead? Yummy

  • TheGr8Red Apr 2, 2007

    Corection...
    Orange County WOULDN'T let Hillsborough PD respond

  • independent_thinker Apr 2, 2007

    Death penalty? I'd like to point out some facts to the conservative parrots:

    The murder rate in kill-'em-all-let-God-sort-them-out, Texas is 130% higher than Gay Marriage Massachusetts. That's the numbers from the FBI's website.

    The murder rate is higher in the Conservative South than it is in the Liberal Northeast. Check the numbers and educate yourself.

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