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Last Updated: Friday, 10 October, 2003, 10:11 GMT 11:11 UK
Profile: Lee Boyd Malvo
Lee Boyd Malvo's childhood was dominated by poverty and uncertainty. He was born in Kingston, Jamaica in February, 1985, to Leslie Malvo, a mason, and Una James, a seamstress.

Lee's parents never married and separated when he was a toddler. Mr Malvo rarely saw his son after that.

Ms James often travelled to find work and Lee was left for long periods of time in the care of relatives and friends.

Lee Boyd Malvo
Lee Boyd Malvo was 17 when he was arrested
Lee and his mother left Jamaica when he was about 14-years-old and moved to the island of Antigua.

Speaking publicly for the first time in June 2003 on a popular Jamaican TV programme, Ms James said she had gone to the island hoping to find a better life for her son.

She told the host of the programme, Profile, that it was while they were living in Antigua in 2000 that they met John Allen Muhammad. She said she had not had an intimate relationship with Mr Muhammad but that he and her son had eventually formed a strong bond. She said her son had spent most of his life seeking a father figure.

Ms James eventually left Antigua for Fort Myers, Florida, travelling on false documents and living there illegally. She told Profile that she had left Lee with Muhammad because her son was supposed to join her a few months later.


In 2001, Lee joined his mother for a short time in Florida, before moving to Bellingham, Washington, where he and Mr Muhammad lived in a homeless shelter.

John Allen Muhammad
Some people said they assumed Mr Muhammad was Lee Boyd Malvo's father
He briefly enrolled in high school and the pair would spend their evenings in a local coffee house playing chess.

People who remember him, describe Lee as being a friendly teenager and respectful to the person they assumed was his father.

The pair left Bellingham in the summer of 2002 and turned up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where one of Mr Muhammad's ex-wives lived.

He reappeared a few months later after being arrested with Mr Muhammad after the sniper shootings.

Since he was sent to jail in Fairfax County, he has met psychiatrists a number of times.

On one occasion, they were asked to examine drawings and musings taken from his cell at the jail.

According to newspaper reports, portions of the writings focused on the 1999 science fiction movie The Matrix, strong allusions to the Muslim faith, lyrics from songs of Jamaican musician Bob Marley and references to the political theories of Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, Socrates, Thomas Jefferson and other long-dead political philosophers, which were said to have been often confused.

Two drawings of Lee Boyd Malvo himself had a sniper's scope drawn around his head.

A report in the Washington Post at the time said psychiatrists thought the writings may have been the obsessive ruminations of a mentally ill prisoner or simply the aggressive imagery of an angry teenager. But they agreed that they in part showed a confused adolescent who was smart and well-read.

Lee Boyd Malvo has been charged with murders relating to last year's killing spree, but his defence team have said that they believe Mr Muhammad brainwashed him, leading him into a plot to kill.

They say he has emerged from Mr Muhammad's grip and is coming to terms with what happened.


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