The other day I posted about the number of school shooting incidents before and since the law making schools “gun free zones”. A commentor wanted references so they could use the stats in a paper they were writing. I wrote to Jeff Knox at Firearms Coalition asking if he could share the references with me and he responded with the following:
Those statistics were compiled by my sister Shan. Here is how she answers the question:
Our article was about the impact of the gun-free school zones, so death tolls are
limited to that criteria. There was an error in the stats – it should have been 14 prior to
1990 and 79 post 1990 (80, now) – I accidentally messed up on the numbers. There were two
shootings at “Cleveland Elementary School” in California – one in Stockton, one in San Diego.
I must have knocked one out, thinking I was duplicating it, so the before figure should have been 13,
but in researching this today, I came across another one that wasn’t included in our original findings,
so the actual pre-1990 figure was 14.
The post-1990 figure should have been 79 – there was a shooting in DC which wasn’t included –
I don’t know why. The killer was acquitted of murder, so maybe it wasn’t showing up as a
homicide in the FBI stats. There has been one additional fatal school shooting at a Washington
State HS since our report, bringing the total to 80.
Since the Crime Control Act of 1990, There have been a total of 80 gun homicides
in school shootings perpetrated by killers who illegally carried firearms onto
elementary or secondary school grounds, or fired onto school grounds,in violation of
the 1990 law. The number is actually higher – there have been several firearms suicides
comitted in schools, but we only counted suicides concurrent with homicidal school shootings.
Those weren’t included in the FBI report we looked at, but they should rightly be included,
since they still spotlight the gun-free zone” fallacy.
There’s what appears to be a complete list – which includes the suicides and a lot of other info, at
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_school-related_attacks and also at
There have been additional people killed on college campuses and post-
secondary institutions during that time, but those places weren’t included in our figures,
because they weren’t included in the gun-free school zones provisions.
There have also been many, many more people wounded, or killed by other types of weapons.
I was using the FBI uniform Crime Reports, but there’s a pretty
full list on wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/School_shooting For some reason,
it doesn’t include Laurie Dann, or details of Oakland Elementary, and a few others
which I’ll list later.
Shootings in elementary and secondary schools in the US prior to 1990 –
Cleveland Elementary San Diego, California, January 29, 1979 (2 killed)
Parkway south JH, Saint Louis, MO Jan.20, 1983 (2 killed)
Goddard Junior high , Goddard, KS Jan. 21, 1985: ( 1 killed)
Hubbard Woods School (Laurie Dann) Winnetka, IL May, 20, 1988 (1 killed)
Oakland Elementary – Greenwood, SC – Sept 26, 1988 (2 killed)
Cleveland Elementary Stockton, California, January 17, 1989 (6 killed)
For post-1990, the list is too long to type, but the Wikipedia link –
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/School_shooting – has a list of
most US shootings, but also includes post-secondary schools. It did not include
the fatalities for East Carter High , Grayson, Kentucky, 1993 (2)
It also did not include:
Wauwatosa West High School December 1, 1993 Wisconsin (1)
Fayetteville, Tennessee, May 19, 1998 (1)
Lew Wallace High School Gary, IN, Mar 30, 2001 (1)
Lake Worth Middle School , Lake Worth, FL May 26, 2000 (1)
Ballou Senior High School. Wash, DC, Feb. 2, 2004 (1)
Henry Foss High School Tacoma, Washington, January 3, 2007 (1)
Hope this helps!
Then there’s the question; At what rate did this sort of thing happen back in the post W.W.II period, when it was common to have shooting ranges at high schools and colleges?
There’s all this talk about “arming students” (as if we’d be passing out guns like condoms, or dispensing pistols and ammo in vending machines in the hallways [hmmm]) with no reference to the fact that guns in schools were at one time fairly common, or the fact that people didn’t go ape-shit over guns like they do today, or that during most of the U.S.’s existence, one could buy or sell guns, for the most part without licensing or paperwork.
Liberty, people– learn it, live it, love it.
If Jeff is finding omissions in the Wikipedia data that he has good sources for, he should correct the Wikipedia article – that’s the whole point of Wikipedia.
You are correct. I forwarded your comment on to him. Thanks.