Friday, February 08, 2008

Copycat Rampages?

Two mass shootings, a school invasion, and overseas rampages in the last 24 hours appear to indicate something is in the air, and now this...

BULLETIN: Woman Opens Fire at LA College ~ BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — A woman shot at least two people then turned the gun on herself Friday morning at Louisiana Technical College, police said. Few details were available. Cpl. L'Jean McKneely said he did not know how many people were shot or whether any of the shootings were fatal.

More details: At 8:30 am., a female went into a classroom and began firing. Two females were killed, and then the shooter killed herself.

Update: Saturday, February 9, 2008. See the blog following for more on the Baton Rouge shooting. Later on Friday, it was learned that a Greenville (South Carolina) Techical College student wounded himself with a self-inflicted gunshot. Officials said 19-year-old Chris Ronoke shot himself in the leg in a dorm room. When he is released from the hospital, he'll be charged for the self-inflicted shooting. Campus police say he violated school policy and the law by having a gun on campus.
[I had written the following before the Louisiana and South Carolina news.]

I was called very early this Friday morning to come onto a news radio program in Canada to discuss the "Kirkwood rampage." Such a request is always an indication to me that the media output is working at a high volume with a new wave of killings.

Before my appearance, I did some research. I was startled to find out the full extent of what had occurred yesterday Thursday, February 7th, and now early today.

Most stories were about the gunman who had gone on a "rampage" in the suburban St. Louis, Missouri city of Kirkwood (pop. 25,000), shooting dead two police and three officials at a local city council.

The shooter was Charles "Cookie" Thornton, 52, a contractor engaged in a dispute with local officials. He killed one police officer in the parking lot, a second officer, and then two council members and a city engineer. Kirkwood mayor Mike Swoboda was shot in the head and was in a critical condition. Another reporter suffered a hand wound.

"He kept saying something about 'Shoot the mayor' and he just walked around shooting anybody he could," said Janet McNichols, a reporter covering the council meeting.

Thornton was shot dead by police, after his violent outburst into the city council meeting in Kirkwood, St Louis.

It was the second mass shooting in the US in 24 hours. Earlier Thursday, a mass killing that received major cable news coverage had occurred in Los Angeles, when a man shot dead a policeman and three relatives before the police killed him.

In the California "rampage," police were called to a house when a gunman phoned to say he'd shot dead three relatives. A shootout left officer Randal Simmons, 51, dead, the first fatality in the 41-year history of the LA police SWAT unit. The standoff ended when police fired teargas and flash grenades inside, possibly triggering a fire.

The shooter died in a further exchange of shots.

Los Angeles deputy police chief Mike Moore said the gunman had no communication with police during the siege, despite pleas from family members outside to give up.

"What we were faced with was a barricaded suspect who had apparently murdered three other individuals," Mr Moore said. "Unfortunately, the suspect had absolutely no contact with us, made no effort to surrender."

Even earlier, a man charged into an Ohio primary school where his estranged wife was a teacher, firing a gun before stabbing her in front of her class. She was in a critical condition.

As a final chapter of the Portsmouth, Ohio, incident, William Michael Layne was found dead in his home after apparently shooting himself following his attack on his wife at Notre Dame Primary. Christi Layne was in a critical condition. Police said Layne stabbed and wounded another woman in an alley five blocks from the school. Stephanie Loop, 22, was also critical.

Meanwhile, on Thursday afternoon February 7th, in the Philippines, an unidentified man went on a rampage killing a passerby and wounding a responding policeman before hundreds of horrified bystanders in J.R. Borja-Daumar streets. Ronnel Abadiano, 30, a resident of Barangay Carmen, was walking by when he was stabbed by the suspect. Abadiano sustained several stab wounds and died at the Northern Mindanao Medical Center. The suspect was killed later by another responding policeman. The suspect was about 30 years old and was wearing a red t-shirt and denim pants.

In New Zealand, this morning come reports of a woman stabbing two pilots (there on yesterday).

An armed woman who hijacked an Air New Zealand flight demanded the pilots take her to Australia. During the hijacking, the two pilots and a female passenger were injured when stabbed with a knife the woman was allegedly armed with. The suspect allegedly started her attack on the pilots 10 minutes after take-off from Blenheim. She was seated in 1A, directly behind the pilots.

Police arrested the woman, a 33-year-old Blenheim resident originally from Somalia, after she allegedly caused 20 minutes of mid-air terror, stabbing the pilots and passenger on a flight from Blenheim to Christchurch and threatening to blow up the plane.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There was almost another shooting rampage at the Super Bowl in Arizona but the person turned himself in to the authorities instead.

Feds: Man denied liquor license planned Super Bowl gunfire, changed mind in parking lot