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Man who killed eight in Seal Beach salon shooting apologizes in courtroom

A man who killed eight people in a shooting rampage at a Southern California hair salon uttered a courtroom apology Thursday, while his victims' relatives voiced outrage over sentencing delays.

Scott Dekraai pleaded guilty in 2014 to killing his hairstylist ex-wife and seven others at a Seal Beach salon in 2011.

His lawyer wants him spared the death penalty.

“I'm sorry. I'm very, very sorry,” Dekraai said, according to the Orange County Register — his first public sign of remorse.

Dekraai spoke and wiped his eyes moments after Bethany Webb, the sister of victim Laura Webb Elody, criticized him for referring to those killed as “collateral damage.”

“You can't give me back what you took,” Webb said. “I'm sorry, you can't apologize for this. ...You will never give me back what was stolen from me.”

A decision on whether Dekraai should face death or life in prison has been postponed because of allegations that jailhouse informants were improperly used to elicit information from Dekraai and suspects in other cases.

Orange County Superior Court Judge Thomas M. Goethals has been holding hearings on whether the Orange County Sheriff's Department withheld information about the use of informants in the murder case.

Paul Wilson — whose wife, Christy Lynn Wilson, was killed — said his father and father-in-law are suffering from advanced cancers.

“It is awful and pathetic to know they may not live to see the coward that took Christy's life brought to justice,” Wilson told the judge.

A county grand jury report released this week blamed jailhouse problems on rogue deputies and said there was no evidence of a conspiracy involving key law enforcement officials.

The allegations also have prompted state and federal investigations.


UPDATES:

6:15 p.m.: This article was updated with additional details from the hearing.

The article originally was published at 5:05 p.m.

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