Please read this blog from beginning to end today because there is some very important information. There will be three things covered: a school shooting that was averted, my research on frequency of mass shootings, and the five types of mass shooters. The types of mass shooters will become five separate weeks of helping you to identify those that may be a threat to your church.

I am sure that most of you have heard by now that a school shooting was stopped before anyone was killed. Yesterday (5/16/2018), in the Dixon, IL, High School, shots rang out in a hallway near the gymnasium. Fortunately, nobody was shot except for the victim. Thanks to a quick acting School Resource Officer (SRO) who was near the gym at that time, this incident did not turn out tragically. Upon hearing the shots, the SRO rushed towards the shooter. According to reports, when the suspect saw the officer running towards him, he began to run away from the SRO. While running away, he turned and fired several shots at the officer. The officer returned fire and shot the suspect in the shoulder. Whether the intention was to shoot the suspect in the shoulder was on purpose or not is unknown, however it should be noted that no lives were lost at all. We thank God for this outcome, and please pray for this officer. Any time an officer has to shoot someone, it can be emotionally traumatic. He needs our prayers and God’s peace.

I also wanted to point out that I was off by a few days in predicting this shooting. The data showed that it should have happened late last week or early this week. I will be investigating why the data was off by these two days, as this may be important. Also, just for informational purposes, I will be investigating whether summer vacations at schools change the frequency of mass shootings. This research is all part of understanding the big picture when it comes to mass shootings.

Starting next week, I will be releasing some of my recent research on mass shooters through this blog. Some may wonder what this has to do with keeping churches safe, and I have an answer. By understanding who mass shooters are, and what their motivations are, we can begin to get a better insight into how to prevent mass shootings. My research has revealed five (5) distinct types of mass shooters. They are:

  • Terrorist shooters
  • PTSD shooters
  • Domestic spillover shooters
  • Mental health shooters
  • Fame and recognition shooters

Knowing what the motivation or underlying causes can help the church (and other organizations) understand what to look for. We can gain insight that someone may become a mass shooter based on specific characteristics of the suspect, or the difficulties they are facing in their life. While these are the five main categories, there can be overlap between two or more. The Venn Diagram below will help to understand the crossover.

Stay tuned to this blog for the next five weeks so that you can learn more. Until next week, stay safe and alert, … Mark

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