An attacker shot and killed six people, including three 9-year-olds, at a private Christian school in Nashville, Tennessee Monday.
Police killed the shooter about fifteen minutes into the attack at The Covenant School. Police said the attacker shot through a door to enter the school using two “assault-style” rifles and a handgun.
About 200 students were at the school at the time of the attack.
The three children killed were Evelyn Dieckhaus, Hallie Scruggs, and William Kinney. The adults killed were 60-year-old Katherine Koonce, 61-year-old Mike Hill and Cynthia Peake, also 61.
Police identified the shooter as 28-year-old Audrey Elizabeth Hale. They say Hale was a former student at the school.
American President Joe Biden said he had spoken to the Nashville chief of police, mayor and senators in Tennessee. He pleaded with Congress to pass stronger gun safety laws, including a ban on assault weapons.
Mass shooters have killed hundreds of people throughout the United States. Mass shootings have happened in food stores, movie theaters and workplaces.
175 killed in 15 mass shootings
The Associated Press operates a database on mass shootings in partnership with USA Today and Northwestern University in Illinois. The group defines a mass shooting as one in which four or more people are killed, excluding the attacker. Its database records show 175 people have died in 15 mass shootings connected to U.S. schools and colleges since the 1999 shooting at Columbine High School.
In May 2022, an 18-year-old gunman opened fire at the Robb Elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, killing 19 children and two adults. Law enforcement killed the attacker, but parents blamed officials for being too slow to react to the event.
A student in Michigan has pleaded guilty to murder and terrorism charges connected to a mass shooting at Oxford High School, near Detroit, Michigan in November 2021. Four people were killed and others were wounded. The student was 15 at the time of the shooting. Officials have charged his parents with involuntary manslaughter. Officials say they failed to keep the gun in a safe place and ignored the mental health needs of their son before the shooting.
A 17-year-old was charged with murder for the killing of 10 people, mostly students, at Santa Fe High School in Texas in May 2018. Following the violence, a Santa Fe student told the local television station, “It’s been happening everywhere. I’ve always kind of felt like that eventually it was going to happen here, too.”
Three months earlier in February 2018, the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida resulted in 17 dead, including 14 students. The shooter was sentenced to life without parole.
In October 2015, a shooter killed nine people at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. The man wounded nine others before killing himself.
At Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Washington state, a 15-year-old used text messages to draw several relatives and friends to his lunch table in October 2014. He shot and killed four of them before killing himself.
A 22-year-old college student used knives and guns to kill six students at the University of California, Santa Barbara in May 2014. He injured several others before killing himself.
Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, was the site of one of the deadliest mass shootings in the U.S. In December 2012, a 19-year-old man killed his mother at their home then went to the nearby elementary school and killed 20 first graders and six educators. The gunman killed himself.
In April 2012, a former nursing student shot and killed seven people at Oikos University, a small private college in East Oakland, California. The shooter died in prison in 2019.
A 27-year-old former student shot and killed five people and wounded more than 20 others at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois, before killing himself in February 2008.
Thirty-two people were killed in April 2007 when a student opened fire at Virginia Tech, a university in Blacksburg, Virginia. The man also wounded more than 20 others before killing himself.
A 32-year-old man entered West Nickle Mines Amish School near Lancaster, Pennsylvania in October 2006. He told the boys to leave and tied up the girls. The man shot and killed five of them before killing himself. Five others were wounded.
In March 2005, a 16-year-old student killed his grandfather and the man’s companion at their Minnesota home. He then went to nearby Red Lake High School, where he killed five students and two others before shooting himself.
At Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, two students killed 12 students and one teacher at the school in April 1999. The two injured many others before killing themselves.
Metropolitan Nashville Police Chief John Drake spoke to reporters Tuesday. He did not say police knew yet why the attacker acted. But he said in an earlier interview with NBC News that investigators believe the shooter had “some resentment for having to go to that school.”
The police have released security videos of the shooter entering the school as well as of the police action that followed. Drake also provided examples of evidence collected about Hale. It includes documents showing careful planning for the attack. Police also said Hale was under the care of a doctor for a mental health disorder. And they said Hale’s weapons had been purchased legally.
I’m Caty Weaver. And I’m Mario Ritter Jr.
The Associated Press reported this story. Hai Do adapted the reports for Learning English.
Words in This Story
rifle -n. a gun with long barrel
resentment - n. a feeling of anger or displeasure about something