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Pagourtzis’ father apologizes for rampage in Santa Fe, says for him “son is a victim”

Two days after the rampage in the high school of Santa Fe, the father of the 17-year-old shooter, Dimitris Pagourtzis, still cannot believe what happened. “I have a funeral here, I have no joy, I feel the pain of the others, but I also have pain… I lost my child, I apologize,” Antonis Pagourtzis said on Saturday in an exclusive interview with with Greek private ANT1 TV.

“All I try now is that my child is not executed,” the father said as the 17-year-old is charged with capital murder and the state of Texas still has the death penalty.

“I wouldn’t mind if he killed me,” the father said among others.

My child was not such a kid, he wouldn’t get involved in fighting, all he did was sports,” the father said and described the last hours before Dimitris opened fire in the high school, killing 8 students and two teachers.

“I was not aware that something was wrong with him,” the father said adding “Last night I cooked for him, we ate together and played, and when he got up in the morning I told him Are you leaving such a hurry? and he told me I love you, dad. I’m going now, I love you, I’ll see you in the afternoon.”

About the motive that pulled the trigger in his sons’ hands, the father said he had the suspicion that something had happened in the last week. “Somebody mocked him? He was a very strong child.”

Several students told Us media that Dimitris Pagourtzis was bullied by co-students as well as by a coach.

“I can only speak about my suspicion, as a father because I’ve lost my child. I’ve lost my child. The only thing I try not is that he will not be executed. For me, my son is not a criminal, he is a victim,” the father said.

While Antonios Pagourtzis speaks in a trembling voice and he obviously is crying, he assures the weapons belonged to him and Dimitris took them from the closet.

“I told police, let me go in, let him kill me, so that nobody else gets harmed. I wouldn’t mind he would kill me.”

The father complains about phone calls he received from Greece. “They speak of the father’s blood-soaked weapons. I don’t accept this, I don’t accept what is going on in Greece, in my homeland, his homeland he loved so much.”

The Greek society is as much shocked as the Us society about the bloodbath in Santa Fe.

Shocked and speechless is also the local community in Magoulitsa by Karditsa, Northen Greece, where Antonios Pagoutzis was born.

Locals told media that they knew Dimitris as a “quiet child who loved bicycle rides and ice cream, when he visited the village in the summer time.”

“He was a quiet child, nothing to do with what they say about weapons,” relatives of the family in Magoulitsa say.

“What can I say? The kids are gone and he is gone too,” Antonis’ sister told Star TV when asked to comment about the rampage in Santa Fe.

According to ANT1 TV, the shooter’s family in Santa Fe, father, mother and a younger sister, has spent the night at the house of friends fearing reprisals.

So far, the family has no contact to Dimitris Pagourtzis as it is not allowed too. On Sunday, his lawyers and a priest from the local Greek Orthodox church are expecting to visit him.

Antonis Pagoutzis migrated to US several years ago. Dimitris was born in Texas. The family kept close ties to the Greek community and the local church.

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