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Seattle Teen Guilty of Murder

September 27, 1997 12:00 AM ET

Barry Loukaitis, the Seattle teen who shot his algebra teacher and two fellow students, was found guilty Wednesday of first-degree murder.

The trial achieved notoriety when Loukaitis' defense claimed that his actions were motivated by incidents in the video for Pearl Jam's "Jeremy."

Loukaitis will be sentenced on October 10. The state is not seeking the death penalty due to his age. A sentence of life imprisonment without parole is expected.

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Song Stories

“American Girl”

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers | 1976

It turns out that a single with "American" in its title--recorded on the Fourth of July during the nation's Bicentennial, no less--can actually sell better in Britain. Coupled with the Heartbreakers' flair for Byrds jangle and Animals hooks, though, is Tom Petty's native-Florida drawl that keeps this classic grounded at home. Petty dispelled rumors that the song was about a suicidal student, explaining that the inspiration came from when he was 25 and used to salute the highway traffic outside his apartment window. "It sounded like the ocean to me," he recalled. "That was my ocean. My Malibu. Where I heard the waves crash, but it was just the cars going by."

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