Courthouse killer says he was 'soldier'

ATLANTA, Oct. 8 (UPI) -- Confessed Georgia courthouse killer Brian Nichols says he was acting as a soldier fighting the government when he killed four people in a 2005 shooting spree.

Nichols, on trial on murder charges in Atlanta for the slayings of a state judge, his court reporter, a sheriff's deputy and a federal agent, told police in a videotaped confession that he saw his victims as enemies who were enslaving him, The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported Wednesday.


"I felt as though I was a slave with them. As a soldier, I don't feel like I committed any war crimes. There was no collateral damage," Nichols said in a videotape shown in the Atlanta courtroom.

Prosecutors say Nichols, who was in the county lock-up in rape charges, has admitted to severely beating a female jailer, taking her gun, then shooting and killing the Superior Court judge in his case, Rowland Barnes, and court reporter Julie Ann Brandau in Barnes' courtroom.

He later allegedly killed a sheriff's deputy perusing him and a federal agent during a robbery at the agent's Atlanta home.

Nichols' defense attorneys say he was insane at the time of the slayings, suffering from paranoia and persecution delusions.


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