Jury gets Castillo case

August 20, 2009 2:50:20 PM PDT
Lawyers made their closing arguments Thursday in the trial of accused school shooter Alvaro Castillo.The defense has tried to prove Castillo was legally insane when he shot and killed his father and then went to Orange High School and wounded students in August 2006.

Prosecutors want to convince the jury the crime was well planned.

Once closing arguments were complete at around 4:30 p.m. Thursday, the case went to the jury so it can determine Castillo's future.

Inside the courtroom Thursday, Castillo listened as D.A. Jim Woodall called him manipulative, saying Castillo knew right from wrong the day he went on a shooting spree in August 2006.

The prosecution believes he wanted to be known as a school shooter, pointing to his obsession with the Columbine High School massacre and his journal detailing plans for his father's murder and the Orange High School attack.

The D.A. contends Castillo's abusive father, his family and limited mental health care are not to blame.

"Think about when they point the finger at dad, at mom, at health officials," Woodall said in his closing statement. "What was the defendant doing? What was he thinking? He was manipulative. He was withholding vital information."

Castillo's defense attorneys continue their argument against the first-degree murder and assault charges against their client. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

They say his severe mental illness clouded his judgment.

"The question ladies and gentleman is whether or not he was insane at the time these events occurred," defense attorney Phoebe Dee said told the jury. "Everything else, I would argue that [what] the state is going to talk about is white noise -- a distraction. I have tremendous confidence you will reach the correct verdict on the only real issue in this case."


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