Accused mass killer One Goh told police shortly after he allegedly killed seven people in a shooting rampage at an Oakland university in 2012 that he felt like a laughingstock at the school, according to a video played in court Thursday.
In an interview with Oakland police about 11 hours after the April 2, 2012 shooting at Oikos University, a Christian vocational school at 7850 Edgewater Drive, Goh said he thought:
“Everyone was laughing at me, like a laughingstock.”
Goh, now 47, said he thought one of the students “was kind of mocking me” and made him feel like he was “some kind of pervert who thinks about sex all the time.”
Goh said he had been second in his class but one of the reasons he left Oikos, which is located near the Oakland airport, is that he thought there was cheating at the school.
Prosecutors previously said Goh appears to have wanted a refund of his tuition and may have been targeting an administrator who was not present on the day of the shooting.
Goh surrendered to Alameda police at a Safeway store at 2227 South Shore Center in Alameda about an hour after the shooting, after he told a security guard that he had shot several people in Oakland.
Goh, a Korean national, is charged with seven counts of murder, three counts of premeditated attempted murder and the special circumstance allegations of committing a murder during a kidnapping and committing multiple murders.
The video of his interview with Oakland police was played as part of an ongoing hearing, which is expected to conclude next week, that will determine if he’s mentally competent to stand trial.
Criminal proceedings against Goh were suspended on Oct. 1, 2012, after his lawyers questioned his mental competency to stand trial. On Jan. 7, 2013, a judge ruled that he was incompetent, citing reports by two psychiatrists who examined him.
He has been treated at Napa State Hospital for more than two and a half years and most doctors who’ve examined him have continued to say that he is incapable of understanding the proceedings against him and assisting in his defense.
But a report by Todd Schirmer, a Napa State Hospital forensic psychologist, in July found Goh competent to stand trial, so a judge recently ordered that Goh face a hearing on his competency.
Prosecutors and defense attorneys agreed at the beginning of Goh’s competency hearing last week that Goh wants the death penalty, but they disagreed about whether he reasonably feels guilty for his crime and wants his punishment or if he suffers from persistent delusions that prevent him from understanding the criminal proceedings against him.
If Alameda County Superior Court Judge Gloria Rhynes finds Goh to be competent he will stand trial on the charges against him and could face the death penalty.
But if she finds him to be mentally incompetent he will be permanently placed at a psychiatric treatment facility such as Napa State Hospital.
Schirmer testified Thursday that he believes Goh is now competent to stand trial because of improvements in his overall functioning and his willingness to interact.
Under a harsh cross-examination by Assistant Public Defender David Klaus, one of Goh’s attorneys, Schirmer admitted that in three previous reports he had concluded that Goh wasn’t competent to stand trial.
But Schirmer said the purpose of treatment at a mental hospital such as Napa is to restore a patient to competence and he thinks Goh has reached that level.
Schirmer said Goh’s improvement is “the outcome of a long treatment plan.” However, Schirmer admitted that his determination that Goh is now competent is “a close call” and said it’s reasonable for other experts to say they still think he’s incompetent.
Goh’s hearing will resume on Monday, when the rest of his videotaped interview with Oakland police will be played.
The hearing is expected to conclude on Tuesday with testimony by a defense expert who thinks that Goh is still mentally incompetent to stand trial.
Rhynes hasn’t said if she will rule on Tuesday or take the matter under submission and rule at a later date.