Six months later, he says he now does not understand why he went through with the killings.
“If you ask me why I did this, I can only say … I don’t understand anymore how I went that far.”
The indictment says Uka went to the airport armed with a pistol, extra ammunition and two knives. Inside Terminal 2, he spotted two U.S. servicemen who had just arrived and followed them to their U.S. Air Force bus.
After 16 servicemen, including the driver, were on or near the bus, Uka approached one of the men for a cigarette, prosecutors said. He confirmed they were U.S. Air Force members en route to Afghanistan, then “turned around, put the magazine that had been concealed in his backpack into his pistol, and cocked the weapon,” the indictment read.
He first shot unarmed Alden in the back of the head, the indictment alleges. He then boarded the vehicle shouting, “Allahu Akbar!” — Arabic for “God is great” — and shot and killed Cuddeback, who was the driver, before firing at others.
He wounded two others — one victim has lost sight in one eye permanently — before his gun jammed and he fled, prosecutors said. The shooter was then chased down and caught.
Some of the American airmen are expected to testify at the trial. At least one relative of the victims — Cuddeback’s mother — has joined the trial as a co-plaintiff.