BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A man spending his life in prison for killing a family of three told investigators that his addiction to first-person shooter video games made the crimes easier.
The plea agreement for 22-year-old Adam Dees required him to answer detectives' questions about the March deaths of 80-year-old Theodore M. Welp, 77-year-old Delores E. Welp and their son, 52-year-old Thomas P. Welp.
Dees spoke to detectives on Monday, saying he was depressed and suicidal when he made the choice to "just go rob a house... that'll give me money to play with for a while."
He said he used Google Maps to find a high-end home to rob and drove to stake out the isolated Welp property. He returned after dark armed with guns and knives.
Dees says he first stole power tools from a building on the property that was under construction and then entered the family's garage.
He told detectives he would have turned back before committing the crimes if the family had owned a bigger dog or activated the alarm system on the house.
Dees said killing so much in video games made shooting the three family members less difficult.
The three victims were tied up, beaten with a baseball bat and shot. Theodore was stabbed in the neck down to his spine.
Dees is spending three consecutive life sentences in prison without the possibility of parole.
The Welps formerly lived in Arizona, where Theodore Welp was the chief of Tucson Electric Power Co. in the 1980s.