Archive for Active Shooter

Since Aurora theater shooting: 387 dead in mass killings

In the three years since James Holmes shot dozens of moviegoers in Aurora, Colo., 78 additional mass killings have occurred, claiming the lives of nearly 400 additional victims.

That includes major public tragedies such as the slayings of 26 people, mostly children, at a school in Newtown, Conn., the recent shootings of nine people in a Charleston, S.C. church, and the Boston Marathon bombings. It also includes less-publicized tragedies, such as a deliberately set fire that killed six family members in McKeesport, Pa., in 2014 and the shootings of four young men on a downtown San Francisco street in January.

USA TODAY has kept a tally of mass killings — defined as the slayings of four or more people, not including the suspect — dating back to 2006. The data show that mass killings occur roughly every two weeks, a figure that has remained steady for the past decade.

There have been 15 mass killings so far this year, claiming 74 lives. Two have occurred in the past two days: the shootings of two adults and two teenagers in Holly Hill, S.C. Wednesday and four Marines gunned down at a military recruitment center in Chattanooga, Tenn., today. Roughly 80% of the mass killings in the past three years have involved guns.

But criminologist James Alan Fox of Northeastern University said gun control isn’t necessarily the answer. USA TODAY’s data shows most guns used in mass killings are handguns, and are often legally obtained.

“When we have these incidents, they tend to motivate people to want to do something about it, and that’s a good thing,” said Fox, the author of Extreme Killing. “But the kind of crime that’s probably most difficult to prevent are these extreme, but rare cases.”

Fox said most mass killings aren’t like Aurora – entirely random acts of violence. Most have specific targets or specific motives, such as killing family members or making a political point. And when mass killers are thwarted by gun checks or are treated for mental health issues, most are motivated enough to find ways around the system.

“I know people want to round up all the guns, and round up all the people considered dangerous,” Fox said. “That’s easier said then done.”

Read More Here

Explore The Data: U.S. Mass Killings Since 2006

USA Today put together a great interactive map to help visualize all of the mass killings that have occurred in the US since 2006.

Check it out here.

Shooter kills employee, wounds another at North Dakota Walmart

(CNN) — A 21-year-old airman shot two Walmart employees, killing one, before apparently ending his own life in the store on Tuesday, police in Grand Forks, North Dakota, said.

Marcell Willis also fired once at a third employee but missed before he shot himself with a handgun, authorities said.

Willis died at a hospital. He was stationed at Grand Forks Air Force Base, where 3,000 Air Force personnel and civilians work, according to the facility’s website.

Chaotic scene
Andy Legg, who was shopping in the store, told CNN affiliate WDAY he heard three or four gunshots just after 1 a.m., and people started running and screaming.

“Just replaying it in my head it’s still kind of hard to grasp,” Legg said.

Police said they would release the names of the victims on Wednesday.

“We are deeply saddened about this situation and our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families,” Walmart spokesman Brian Nick said. “We are still learning information about the events surrounding this tragedy and assisting law enforcement in their investigation.”

See the full story

Police: No explosives found in car used in Texas attack

( — U.S. agents searched an apartment in Phoenix as part of an investigation into a shooting outside a suburban Dallas venue hosting a provocative contest for Prophet Muhammad cartoons, the FBI confirmed Monday.

A police officer shot and killed two gunmen who opened fire outside the event Sunday night. A security officer was wounded in the shooting.

Garland police officer Joe Harn says the men had used assault rifles, and that one officer had fatally shot both gunmen. Harn also said investigators searched the men’s car and detonated several suspicious items, but no bombs were found in the vehicle.

“We were able to stop those men before they were able to penetrate the area and shoot anyone else,” Harn said.

The event Sunday featured speeches by American Freedom Defense Initiative president Pamela Geller and Geert Wilders, a Dutch lawmaker known for his outspoken criticism of Islam. Wilders received several standing ovations from the crowd and left immediately after his speech.

Wilders, who has advocated closing Dutch doors to migrants from the Islamic world for a decade, has lived under round-the-clock police protection since 2004.

The FBI said the Phoenix residence was being searched for indications of what prompted the attack, and FBI spokeswoman Katherine Chaumont said no other locations in Phoenix are being investigated.

See the full story