Student's father says son left suicide message on computer

Monday, October 17th 2005, 6:35 am
By: News On 6

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) The University of Oklahoma student who died after detonating an explosive device near a packed football stadium left a message on his computer that he was going to quit living, his father said.

The FBI read the message to the father of Joel Henry Hinrichs III on Friday, after Joel Henry Hinrichs Jr. came to Oklahoma to clear out his son's university-owned apartment.

The younger Hinrichs, 21, had a reputation as a loner and had struggled at times with his grades.

Joel Hinrichs Jr. said he understood investigators found the message on the computer screen when they arrived at the apartment.

``It was a single line of text on his computer,'' his father told The Oklahoman. ``The cursor was still blinking at the end.''

The elder Hinrichs, of Colorado Springs, said he could not recall the exact wording but said his son used profanity in the message and was obviously very angry.

``He wrote he was dissatisfied with the situation and was going to quit living,'' the father said.

Investigators have said they may never know whether the student wanted to get inside the stadium. The student did not have a season ticket.

FBI officials also have said the investigation has not found any links between the student and terrorist organizations.

Joel Henry Hinrichs Jr. said he thinks his son was committing suicide and never intended to hurt anyone else.

The father said the FBI on Friday showed him the fractured bench where his son was sitting when the bomb exploded and photos of his son's headless body and a tattered backpack.

The younger Hinrichs had a long fascination with ammunition and bombs, his relatives and friends said.

Inside his bedroom in Norman were several used metal artillery shells, belts made of used brass shell casings, a box of spent bullets and military ammo containers.

He also had items more typical of many college students, such as textbooks, empty liquor bottles and magazines.

Bomb experts removed explosive-related materials from the apartment Oct. 2.