Santa Barbara killer walks free as families relive carnage
Just because you were insane doesn’t mean you should get away with it. Do the crime, do the time.
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Elliot Rodger ended his murder spree in Santa Barbara, Calif., last week by taking his own life, but a man who mounted an eerily similar attack 13 years ago survived his rampage and is now free after serving just over a decade in a mental hospital.
It was Feb. 23, 2001, when David Attias — a then-University of California-Santa Barbara freshman and son of Hollywood director Daniel Attias — plowed his turbo-charged Saab into a group of young adults in the same Isla Vista neighborhood of the coastal community, killing four and permanently injuring another before climbing atop the car and declaring himself “the Angel of Death.” Charged with murder, he was found not guilty by reason of insanity and sent to a state mental institution. He was released in 2012, having been locked away for slightly more than two years for each of his dead victims.
“He’s out because he got treatment and he finally learned what he needed to say,” said Sally Divis, whose son, Christopher, was just 20 when he was run down by Attias. “Do I actually think he’s safe? Not really.”