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Monday, 7 January, 2002, 09:41 GMT
Plane crash boy 'shunned others'
Crash debris
No-one else was hurt in the crash
The 15 year-old student pilot who apparently committed suicide by crashing his small plane into a Florida skyscraper was described by police as "a very troubled man".

A handwritten note left in Charles Bishop's pocket "expressed sympathy" with the events of 11 September, however it indicated that the schoolboy had acted alone, said Tampa police chief Bennie Holder.

He never talked to anybody

Neighbour David Ontiveros
"Bishop can best be described as a young man who had very few friends and was very much a loner," he said.

"From his actions we can assume he was a very troubled young man."


Bishop, a student at East Lake High School, Tampa, has been repeatedly described as a loner by his teachers and others who knew him.

School photo of young pilot Charles Bishop
Charles Bishop was killed instantly
"He never talked to anybody," said neighbour David Ontiveros.

However classmate Ross Stewart said that Bishop was a "teacher's pet" who got consistently good marks at school.

"He seemed to like his classes...he was never really down about anything (and) he smiled a lot," he said.

And his former algebra teacher, Rayette Bouldrick, said she was stunned by the news of his death.

"I'm floored...he always had a smile (and) he was always pleasant and respectful."

Police and FBI agents interviewed Bishop's relatives on Sunday, and are currently sifting through documents and information stored on the teenager's home computer, hoping to shed further light on his motives.

Police said that he had no criminal record or history of psychological or drugs problems and had not attempted suicide before.

Previous tragedies

America has been troubled by a spate of shocking teenage crimes in the past few years.

In April last year Californian teenager, 15 year-old Charles Andrew Williams, was accused of killing two classmates and wounding 13 others at his high school.

And in November last year three Massachusetts teenagers were charged with plotting a mass school shooting, which was foiled by police.

Most notorious is the 1999 Columbine massacre, when 12 students and a teacher were killed by two students armed with guns at the Colorado high school.

Dylan Klebold, 17, and Eric Harris, 18, then turned the guns on themselves.

The BBC's Nick Bryant in Washington
"Friends say he was deeply disturbed by the events of last September"
See also:

06 Jan 02 | Americas
Chilling reminder of terror attacks
06 Mar 01 | Americas
Terror in US schools and workplaces
27 Nov 01 | Americas
US teenagers in bomb plot trial
02 Feb 01 | Americas
Teenager in court over 'murder plan'
06 May 00 | Americas
Tragedy strikes again at Columbine
14 Jun 00 | Education
Rise in bomb threats after Columbine
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