Mental Health and Homicides

It is time to tap dance on landmines and begin the Gun Facts investigation of the intersection of mental health and gun violence. This will be an ongoing project, as it appears to be a determinant variable in mass homicides (and hence, mass shootings). Main Takeaways Three forms of mental impairment are tightly associated with spree and serial killers. 74% of mass shooters had some form of genetic or induced disorder. Deinstitutionalization has removed dangerous people from being closely monitored In-patient psychiatric care was replaced, in part, with psychotropic medications, some of which can amplify violent desires. Triggering the Investigation News reports too often detail that mass public shooters had prior histories of mental health issues. One need only look at some of the twenty-first century’s mass murderers (the rogues galley at right being a representative sample) and you can tell there is something fundamentally different and dangerous about them. … Continue reading

Reducing Rampages

Stopping madmen with guns is – statistically speaking – best solved by people, not police, and people with guns. Rampage killings (which include all the common varieties of incidents where a lot of people are murdered, be it mass public shootings, active shooter events, spree killings, etc.) are what scares voters. Most people know and avoid rough neighborhoods. They also choose friends and mates wisely. This keeps mayhem low, evidenced by the fact most gun crime is isolated in a tiny number of towns with big city gang infestations. It is the random odds of dying in a rampage shooting that spooks folks. One fellow decided to see what keeps the most people alive in such incidents, and discovered citizens – especially armed citizens – are the most effective, and vastly more so than cops (see the section below on methodology, data quality, etc.). Survival is the objective The researcher … Continue reading

74 School Shootings Bunk

How you define a thing defines that thing. Recently the President of the United States, echoing without analysis a gun control group sound bite, talked about how there have been 74 school shootings since the Sandy Hook massacre. He did not elaborate on how he came by this number because, frankly, he doesn’t know what he is talking about (surprise). Like many criminological things, the definition of a “school shooting” is borderline nonsensical and defined by government criminologists. In the Bureau of Justice Statistics publication Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2013, they note: School associated violent deaths include those that occurred while the victim was on the way to or returning from regular sessions at school or while the victim was attending or traveling to or from an official school sponsored event. Ponder this for a moment. A kid wearing the wrong colors while dashing from school to home through a gang-infested … Continue reading