Sebastian Olivares-Coster, 17 and known as "Seabass" among friends, remained in custody on charges that he shot Leary, Wohlers and Cory Andrewski on Wednesday night in an apparent argument about a girl. Andrewski, 16, was shot at close range and died at the scene.
Other reports come from the Missoulian.com site, which includes a video of the initial court appearance in which bail was set at $500,000.
Olivares-Coster's friends described him as a brilliant student - one called him a “walking Wikipedia” - who took honors and advanced placement college classes before dropping out of Helena High School last fall.
Clay Springmeyer was Olivares-Coster's best friend at Central Elementary School and through part of middle school until Olivares-Coster's family moved to Prague for a short period.
“He spoke fluent French, German and Czech, and told me he wanted to go to a military academy and try to become a diplomat,” said Springmeyer, a Helena High senior who graduates Saturday. “He was smart, kind and rambunctious, just a normal kid who was smarter than most people.”
Other friends acknowledged that Olivares-Coster became a different person when he drank. They say he "never became physically violent toward anyone, but had broken windows, pointed an unloaded weapon at a person, and chased a person with a knife."
What do you suppose could explain a 17-year-old doing such things with guns? He's said to have pointed an unloaded weapon at someone once. In the details of this case, we know that the other day he went home, got a loaded gun, lured his friends to a convenient place and tried to kill all three of them. One of the survivors was shot in the head and the other was shot "several" times.
Do you think the prevalent gun culture in Montana could have something to do with this? Or, perhaps it's not limited to Montana. Haven't we seen this time and time again in all parts of the country? The inability to effect conflict resolution peacefully, combined with the ready access of guns and the know-how to use them, often proves to be a deadly combination.
What do you think about the gun laws in Montana?
Under federal law, long guns and shotguns can’t be purchased by anyone younger than 18, and handguns can’t be bought by anyone younger than 21. However, they can lawfully own a handgun or shotgun that is given to them.
What kind of a silly law is that? I suppose your typical gun lover would have no qualms giving his teenage son, or even his pre-teen son for that matter, guns of his own. It's all about education and training, isn't it? Did anyone ever consider that maybe kids cannot easily learn the difficult concepts of discretion and prudence, of resorting to violence only as a last resort and only when lethal threat is operative? Did any of these gun enthusiasts ever think that lessons like these, which are hard enough for responsible adults to incorporate, might be too much for kids?
What's your opinion? How could a young boy learn three or four languages living in Montana? Why do you think he dropped out of high school? Do you think alcohol played a role in this tragedy?
Please leave a comment.