Columbine: Shooters' Parents Were Warned

  • Share
  • Read Later
LITTLETON: The parents of Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold may have some explaining to do. The two boys' English teacher, after reading some disturbing writing assignments by the pair, spoke with Klebold's mother and Harris's father a month before the massacre. Klebold routinely described killings, and classmate Kevin Hofstra told the New York Times of Harris: "He often wrote about shotguns."

The teacher, though, went away satisfied when Harris's father told her his son had military aspirations, and Klebold apparently fooled not only his mother but his school guidance counselor by explaining the depictions as "just a story." And of course there's the matter of that sawed-off shotgun barrel on Harris's dresser. Should the parents have done more, questioned more, understood more? The 80 investigators on the case in Littleton are still sifting through 10,000 pieces of evidence and 1,800 tips. They've arrested a neighbor who sold Harris the semiautomatic, but they've said nary a word about Mr. Harris or Mrs. Klebold. Parental responsibility certainly didn't pop up in any significant way at President Clinton's youth violence summit on Monday. All politics may be local, but a home life can be awfully hard to legislate.