In the wake of Friday's abhorrent shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary, unnerving memories have returned for citizens of Waller, where Trey Sesler killed his parents and brother last March before attempting a Columbine-style attack at his former junior high school.
While the then 22-year-old ultimately backed out of his plans for the mass shooting, the murders and the possible outcome still resonate throughout the small community northwest of Houston.
“He actually loaded his weapons and went to the school and waited on the children to exit the building. As they started exiting, he had a change of heart."
“It’s still very painful," one area resident told KHOU Ch. 11 on Monday. “It’s still just so unbelievable. This kind of tragedy can happen in any town.”
During interviews with investigators, Sesler said he prepared for the attacks by killing livestock, shooting empty buildings and setting fires.
Following the triple murder, Sesler explained to authorities that he killed his parents and brother so they wouldn't have to be ashamed of what he planned to do. But when he finally arrived to the school, something made him change his course.
“He actually loaded his weapons and went to the school and waited on the children to exit the building. As they started exiting, he had a change of heart,” recalled Waller police chief Phil Rehak. "That’s about as close as you can get without firing a first shot.”
After securing a controversial plea agreement, Sesler currently spends life in prison with no chance of parole.
Watch the full KHOU Ch. 11 report: