As Hawkins explained to officials, McAlister was stabbed to death and his remains were dumped in the forest area of Shasta County; a hiker eventually came across McAlister's body a year later.
The television station is directly adjacent to the police station.
After giving the stunning interview, Hawkins then walked next door and handed himself into police, before turning in two alleged accomplices - his ex-girlfriend and her brother. According to Hawkins' KRCR interview, he searched out McAlister's family and tried to own up to his actions on numerous occasions, but it just never happened.
Brian Keith Hawkins, 44, of Shingletown, called the station to say he wanted to admit his role in the killing, but producers told him the interview wouldn't air until he turned himself in to police, according to KRCR.
Hawkins told them that he, Curtis Culver, 45, and Culver's sister, Shanna Culver, 41, murdered McAlister after luring him to Shingletown to steal money he had received in a settlement.
In 1997, a man named Michael Vielbig, who was the suspect in the high profile murder of a woman named Christine Munro, made a similar confession but investigators could not find a connection.
Unable to bear the guilt, he said could no longer live with the knowledge that he had been involved in a homicide and that his faith in God commanded him to come forward. All three are being held on suspicion of homicide at the Shasta County Jail. Instead, he was robbed and stabbed to death-his body left to rot and his auto dumped at the nearest Costco.
During his TV interview Tuesday, Hawkins, wearing a long-sleeve T-shirt and camouflage trousers and clasping a can of cola, declined to give details about the killing. He told them that the trio initially wanted to rob the young man.
"Horrible, horrible, horrible, absolute horror, absolutely horrible since that day", he said. Every minute of every day has been a nightmare.
"I've been through hell my whole life because of this", he said as he shed tears. "By the time I got there, his father had passed away", a remorseful Hawkins told the news channel.
Hawkins said he hopes the community can forgive him.
After the interview was over, the TV station informed Redding's chief of police and the Shasta County Sheriff's Office that Hawkins was on his way to confess to a crime.
Redding Police Captain Eric Wallace said multiple investigators took on the case over the years, trying multiple leads-with little to show for all their work.
Watch Hawkins' full television confession here.