Details from an apparent confession by Levi Aron, the man accused of killing 8-year-old Leiby Kletzky in Brooklyn, have shed light on what may have actually happened in the time between the boy's disappearance and the discovery of his body Wednesday.
NBC New York has obtained excerpts from Aron's confession, which details the time leading up to the alleged murder. The scene painted by the confession is somewhat astounding, as Aron states that he spent hours with the boy during the time he was missing. The murder was the result of panic, he said, after he discovered that a widespread search for the boy was in progress. The AP reports that Aron smothered the boy upon hearing the news reports.
Afterwards -- I panicked because I didn’t know what to do with the body.… carried parts to the back room placing parts between the freezer and the refrigerator …
Aron's lawyer suggested Thursday that his client was possibly mentally ill. "He has indicated to me that he hears voices and has had some hallucinations," attorney Pierre Bazile said.
At a news conference, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Aron had scratches on his arms, wrists and elsewhere -- a sign "there was some kind of struggle." There also were marks on the boy's remains that could have been caused by restraints, the commissioner added.
A preliminary medical examination indicates Leiby was "smothered or suffocated," but it remained unclear when that happened, Kelly said.
Kelly also confirmed reports that Aron had given a written confession in Leiby's gruesome slaying that ended with, "I'm sorry for the hurt that I caused."
Beyond that, "he hasn't expressed any remorse," Kelly said.
On the day before he went missing, the boy's parents had taken him through the route he was supposed to follow home, according to MSNBC. Surveillance footage shows that Kletzky may have been lost when he asked Aron, a stranger, for a ride to a Judaica bookstore.
Aron also told investigators that he brought the boy to a wedding in the suburb of Monsey on Monday evening, but so far they have been unable to confirm that claim.
Aron was charged with the murder on Wednesday (his 35th birthday), after police raided his apartment and found Kletzky's dismembered feet in his refrigerator. Though his only other arrest was for public urination, the Post reported that it is believed Aron may have attempted to lure another boy into his car.