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The US Secret Service has just released a report after analyzing more than 170 mass shootings that killed at least three people. The researchers hope that the detailed information can somehow prevent deaths in the future.
Just three weeks into 2023, police have responded to 39 mass shootings across the country. At least seven people were killed in California on Monday when a 66-year-old man targeted people he worked with, shooting and killing them in execution style.
“All the evidence we have points to this being workplace violence,” San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus said.
According to the recently released Secret Service study, more than half of attackers were motivated by some kind of grievance and sought revenge for perceived wrongdoing.
17% of grievances were related to a problem with a current or former relationship, and 10% were related to the workplace.
“We have unfinished business in our country to address gun violence, this workplace violence,” said Democratic Rep. Anna Eschoo of California.
73% of mass shooters used one or more firearms according to the study. And 28% of attackers issued a final communication. Suggesting through a diary, writing, suicide note, or cryptic message, that they planned to act violently.
93% of abusers were experiencing a personal crisis such as domestic violence, divorce, or workplace disciplinary action. The study found that 77% of their crisis incidents occurred within a year of the mass shooting and 72% experienced financial hardship before the murders.
Most of the attackers were white men and almost all have a history of domestic violence. And more than half of attackers experienced a mental health crisis before their attack.
“We look at all criminal history, mental health history and see if there is anything, any gaps that we might have missed,” Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert G. Luna said.
News4JAX spoke to a mental health expert about these warning signs of potential violence. They include, someone suddenly withdrawing from friends, excessive irritability, persistent thoughts of harming themselves or someone else, and cruelty to animals.
Experts say it’s more important not to ignore these behaviors or any direct threats to a person, place, or themselves.
If you suspect an urgent threat, experts suggest contacting your local law enforcement agency. In cases involving concerning behavior but you don’t suspect an attack, mental health professionals, counselors, and community leaders are your best option.
If you or someone you know is in emotional distress or in a suicidal crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
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A Secret Service report analyzes people who commit mass shootings
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