The 35-year-old hardware store clerk accused of abducting 8-year-old Leiby Kletzky off the street and killing him before cutting up his body has been formally charged as police revealed more troubling details about the crime.
Levi Aron entered no plea today to charges of first-degree murder and kidnapping, and was ordered held without bail. He is accused of snatching Leiby on Monday and taking him to his apartment, where police say he suffocated and dismembered him.
His attorney, Pierre Bazile, said Aron hears voices and has hallucinations. A psychiatric exam was ordered.
“His demeanor is not good,” Bazile said, adding his condolences to the boy’s family.
As Aron was led into and out of the courtroom, other prisoners awaiting arraignment at the courthouse could be heard jeering and yelling at him.
Aron wrote in a confession obtained by NBC New York that: “I understand this may be wrong and I’m sorry for the hurt that I have caused.”
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said that Aron has shown “no remorse,” at times giggling when speaking with investigators.
Kelly said the boy appeared to have defensive wounds, which leads investigators to believe he fought back when he was being smothered to death.
Aron had told police in his confession that he let the boy sleep while he went to work on Tuesday, but Kelly said the child appeared to have been restrained. Officials think he might have been tied up in the apartment while Aron went to work.
Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes said investigators are poring over Aron’s computer and looking into whether he approached other children in New York and Memphis, Tenn., where he briefly lived.