Robert Dear: No remorse for shootout at Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood clinic

February 26, 2016 Updated: February 27, 2016 at 11:16 am
0
photo - COLORADO SPRINGS, CO - December 09: Robert Dear Jr. during an outburst while talking directly to Judge Gilbert Martinez during a court appearance December 09, 2015 where El Paso County prosecutors filed formal charges against him in the Planned Parenthood attack during which University of Colorado Colorado Springs police officer Garrett Swasey, Iraq war veteran Ke'Arre  Stewart and Jennifer Markovsky, mother of two were killed on November 27, 2015. Photo by Andy Cross/The Denver Post
COLORADO SPRINGS, CO - December 09: Robert Dear Jr. during an outburst while talking directly to Judge Gilbert Martinez during a court appearance December 09, 2015 where El Paso County prosecutors filed formal charges against him in the Planned Parenthood attack during which University of Colorado Colorado Springs police officer Garrett Swasey, Iraq war veteran Ke'Arre Stewart and Jennifer Markovsky, mother of two were killed on November 27, 2015. Photo by Andy Cross/The Denver Post 

Drawn to Colorado by its legal marijuana, convinced that FBI agents were tailing his every move, Robert Lewis Dear Jr. snapped one day after Thanksgiving.

Armed with at least one AK-47, he drove to a Colorado Springs hardware store to look up the address of Colorado Springs' lone Planned Parenthood clinic in the yellow pages. 

He showed no remorse for what came next.

"I killed three and I saved 3,000 ... 3,000 babies or more," Dear said. 

The man who proudly took credit for the city's latest mass shooting let loose in a 30-minute interview with The Gazette on Friday evening at the El Paso County jail. He spoke two days after a court hearing where he invited media outlets to talk to him, promising an exclusive.

He again said the attack was spur-of-the-moment decision that targeted a place where "evil" abortions were performed. And he reiterated claims he made last month to Denver-based CBS4 that FBI agents had harassed and followed him for years.

When it came to discussing new information on a shooting that shocked the nation, he spared no details. Among his disclosures:

- Dear moved to Colorado for mountain solitude and newly-legalized marijuana, vindicating earlier reporting by The Denver Post. Dear told The Gazette on Friday that he grew marijuana here and smoked it, and that his girlfriend had a medical marijuana card. The fact marijuana was legal here simply proved "easier" than at his prior home in North Carolina.

- Another reason for the attack: "Love for a woman." He said he thought doctors at a Woodland Park hospital "were killing" his girlfriend, who lived with him at a secluded trailer in Hartsel. She was admitted for a boil, and Dear said he snapped Nov. 27 after spotting FBI agents trailing him at the hospital.

- Dear stopped at a Lowe's hardware store to find a phone book to look up Planned Parenthood's address. He avoided his phone's Wi-Fi service for fear the FBI would see what he was doing.

- His decision to surrender after a five-hour standoff at the clinic Nov. 27 came down to the flip of a coin. He said the side that faced up indicated God wanted him to give up.

His voice often raised, Dear spoke through a video feed at the jail while wearing a so-called turtle suit - a vest designed to ensure he can't harm himself. His white beard appeared neatly trimmed.

Often, he closed his eyes for long stretches while railing about the FBI's "dirty tricks" and President Barack Obama, who he equated with the devil, citing Bible verses as proof.

Dear framed himself as a deeply religious man - calling that a reason for him having escaped unharmed from the Nov. 27 shootout.

"God is in charge of this whole thing," he said.

And Dear said he's mentally fit.

He recalled recently being taken to the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo for a psychiatric evaluation gauging whether he is competent to stand trial.

A judge ordered the evaluations in late December after Dear said he wanted to fire his attorneys and represent himself while he faces 179 counts in the attack, including first-degree murder.

Evaluators need at least two more weeks to complete their report, Fourth Judicial District Chief Judge Gilbert Martinez said at Dear's latest hearing Wednesday.

If Martinez finds him incompetent, the case would be placed on hold while Dear is treated at the Pueblo facility.

On Friday, Dear said he recently refused subsequent psychiatric evaluations at the El Paso County jail.

Emphatically, Dear stressed he was fine.

"I'm not incompetent - I'm a college graduate," Dear said.

When asked whether he knew that the Planned Parenthood clinic performed services including cancer screenings, pregnancy testing and tests for sexually-transmitted diseases, Dear waved off the question.

"They do millions of abortions - that's all I know," he said.

At the jail, he said he can do little but read newspapers. In doing so, he read about the three people killed in his rampage.

Ke'Arre Stewart, 29, Jennifer Markovsky, 35, and University of Colorado at Colorado Springs police officer Garrett Swasey, 44 died in the attack. Nine others were wounded, including five law enforcement officers.

When asked about whether he felt sorry for those people, he bristled - again returning to the topic of abortion.

"100 million babies - their lives are over," Dear said

He remained unrepentant until the end.

"God's directing me," he said.

Comments have been disabled for this article Comment Policy

Robert Dear: No remorse for shootout at Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood clinic

Updated: February 27, 2016 at 11:16 am

Drawn to Colorado by its legal marijuana, convinced that FBI agents were tailing his every move, Robert Lewis Dear Jr. snapped one day after Thanksgiving. Armed with at least one AK-47, he drove to a Colorado Springs hardware store to look up the address of Colorado Springs' lone Planned...

You've reached your 4 FREE premium stories for this 30 day period*

Already have an account? Login

*A 30 day rolling period starts the day you first visit the site.