Friends tell the Los Angeles Times that Itzcoatl “Izzy” Ocampo returned from Iraq a changed man. The ex-Marine from Orange County, Calif., is accused of killing four homeless men, each stabbed more than 40 times. “He’s a veteran who did not get the help he needed,” said a fellow Marine, adding that she had trusted Ocampo with her life.
Los Angeles Times:
Ocampo’s family said the 9/11 attacks inspired him to join the military. When Ocampo went through basic training in San Diego in 2006, he struck fellow Marine Robert Hays as “really motivated” and “gung-ho.”
But something changed after he returned from a deployment to Iraq in 2008 , those who know him say. Though it did not involve fighting, his job with the Marines’ 1st Medical Battalion was a notably grisly one. He was assigned to meet and inspect the wounded — both friend and enemy — when they were flown in from combat zones en route to the hospital.
“He came back totally changed,” Hays said. “It was almost like he didn’t care anymore. He’d get fidgety, he’d start shaking, spacing out. You’d see him staring off.”