List of school shootings in the United States

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This is a chronological list of school shootings in the United States.

Prior to 1989, there were only a handful of incidents in which two or more victims were killed by firearms at a school, including the 1966 University of Texas massacre, the 1974 Olean High School shooting, the 1976 California State University, Fullerton massacre, and the 1979 Cleveland Elementary School shooting (the 1927 Bath School disaster was a bombing, not a shooting, with a firearm used only to detonate explosives). School shootings prior to the late 1990s, when they received intensive press and official coverage, were considered local incidents and may be substantially underreported in current tabulations, raising questions as to whether school shootings are actually increasing or are simply receiving more attention in recent years. From 1989 to 2012, there have been at least 40 such incidents.

Contents

History

1700s

The earliest known United States shooting to happen on school property was the Pontiac's Rebellion school massacre on July 26, 1764, where four Lenape American Indians entered the schoolhouse near present-day Greencastle, Pennsylvania, shot and killed schoolmaster Enoch Brown, and killed nine or ten children (reports vary). Only three children survived.[1]

1800s

1900–1930s

There are very seldom reports of mass or multiple school shootings during the first three decades of the 20th Century, with the three most violent attacks on schools involving either arson or explosions.

1940s

1950s

1960s

1970s

The two most notable U.S. school shootings in the early 1970s were the Jackson State killings in May 1970, where police opened fire on the campus of Jackson State University and the Kent State shootings also in May 1970 where the National Guard opened fire on the campus of Kent State University.[citation needed]

The mid to late 1970s is considered the second most violent period in U.S. school history with a series of school shootings,

1980s

According to the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence, in the United States, from September 1986 to September 1990:[104]

According to a 1987 survey conducted by the American School Health Association,[105] " 3% of the boys reported having carried a handgun to school at least once during the school year; 1% reported carrying a handgun on a daily basis."

The late 1980s began to see a major increase in school shootings, including:

1990s

According to a survey conducted in 1993 by The Harvard School of Public Health,[123] "15% [of students surveyed] said that they had carried a handgun on their person in the past 30 days, and 4% said that they had taken a handgun to school in the past year," a sharp increase from just five years earlier.

According to the National School Safety Center, since the 1992-1993 U.S. school year there has been a significant decline in school-associated violent deaths (deaths on private or public school property for kindergarten through grade 12 and resulting from schools functions or activities):[125]

According to the U.S. Department of Education, in the 1998-1999 School Year, 3,523 students (57% High School, 33% Junior High, 10% Elementary) were expelled for bringing a firearm to school.[126]

2000s

2010s

DateLocationDeathsInjuriesDescription
02010-02-12February 12, 2010Huntsville, Alabama0,000,00130,000,00132010 University of Alabama in Huntsville shooting: Amy Bishop Anderson, a biology professor, shot and killed three of her colleagues and wounded three others during a faculty meeting. In September 2012, she was sentenced to a life sentence without the possibility of parole, and is serving her sentence at the Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women.
02010-02-23February 23, 2010Littleton, Colorado0,000,00100,000,0012At Deer Creek Middle School, Bruco Eastwood opened fire from a Winchester Model 70 rifle in a parking lot. Two students, one female and one male and both eighth graders, were both shot and wounded. The boy's wounds were critical for the four days following the shooting. Eastwood was taken down by teachers and held until his arrest. In October 2011, Eastwood was found not guilty by reason of insanity.
02010-09-28September 28, 2010Austin, Texas0,000,00110,000,0010Colton Tooley, 19, a student at the University of Texas at Austin, fired multiple shots around the campus with an AK-47 semi-automatic rifle. Nobody was injured. After the shooting, Tooley walked into the Perry-Castañeda Library and then committed suicide.
02010-10-08October 8, 2010Carlsbad, California0,000,00100,000,0012Brendan Liam O'Rourke, 41, opened fire with a .357 handgun on a group of children during their lunch period at Kelly Elementary School. Two girls, ages 6 and 7, were hit and grazed by bullets. A construction worker held down O'Rourke until police arrived. O'Rourke wanted to target wealthy children and chose that school as his place of attack. He was sentenced to life in prison.
02010-11-29November 29, 2010Marinette, Wisconsin0,000,00110,000,0010Samuel Hengel, 15, took 23 students and a teacher hostage inside a classroom of Marinette High School for several hours. Before the hostage situation, Hengel stormed in the classroom with a handgun and fired shots at a movie projector while a movie was playing. After releasing all the hostages, police entered the building and Hengel shot himself in the head. He died the next day.
02010-12-06December 6, 2010Aurora, Colorado0,000,00100,000,0011In a gang-related attack outside Aurora Central High School, a 17-year-old girl was shot and wounded. The wounds caused her to be paralyzed. Luis Enrique Guzman-Rincon, 20, fired shots from a car while students were standing outside the high school, trying to shoot at a group of students who were believed to be gang rivals. Guzman-Ricon was sentenced to 35 years in prison.[141]
02011-01-05January 5, 2011Omaha, Nebraska0,000,00120,000,0012At Millard South High School, Robert Butler Jr., 18, shot and killed Assistant Principal Dr. Vicki Kaspar, and wounded Principal Curtis Case. Butler then opened fire indiscriminately in the front office area, causing the school nurse to be injured by gunshot debris. Butler drove to a parking lot and then fatally shot himself.
02011-03-26March 26, 2011Martinsville, Indiana0,000,00100,000,0011Michael Phelps, a 15-year-old suspended student, returned to Martinsville West Middle School with a 9mm handgun. In the entrance of the school, Phelps encountered 15-year-old Chance Jackson and shot him twice in the abdomen. Phelps fled the school and dropped the handgun in a field and was arrested shortly after.[142] As a result, Jackson suffered from life threatening injuries and underwent surgery three times, and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. Phelps was convicted of attempted murder in August 2011, and was sentenced to 30 years in prison and 5 years of probation.[143][144]
02011-05-10May 10, 2011San Jose, California0,000,00130,000,0010Napoleon Lavarias Caliguiran, 54, shot and killed his 25-year-old wife and a 26-year-old man in the fifth level of a parking garage of the San Jose State University campus. Caliguiran shot himself and died later that night in a hospital.
02011-10-24October 24, 2011Fayetteville, North Carolina0,000,00100,000,0011A 15-year-old girl was shot in the neck at Cape Fear High School. She was hospitalized in serious condition. A .22-caliber rifle was used in the attack. A student of the school, a 15-year-old male, was arrested and charged with attempted murder.
02011-12-08December 8, 2011Blacksburg, Virginia0,000,00120,000,0010Ross Truett Ashley, 22, a part-time business student at Radford University, shoots and kills a police officer on the campus of Virginia Tech. Shortly after, he leaves the scene and returns and commits suicide.
02012-02-27February 27, 2012Chardon, Ohio0,000,00130,000,0013Thomas "T.J." Lane, 17, is believed to have taken a Ruger MK III .22 caliber semi-automatic handgun and a knife to Chardon High School and fired ten shots at a group of students sitting at a cafeteria table. Three students died in the attack; a 16-year-old boy died immediately, and two other male students died from their wounds the following day. Three other students were injured. Lane was arrested when he was standing near his car parked near the school, and is charged with murder, attempted murder, and firearms offenses.[145]
02012-04-07April 7, 2012Oakland, California0,000,00170,000,0013One Goh is accused of shooting to death seven students and wounding three others at Oikos University, a small Christian college. The weapon used was a .45 caliber handgun. Goh is charged with seven counts of murder and is believed by his psychiatric to suffer from paranoid schizophrenia.
02012-08-16August 16, 2012Memphis, Tennessee0,000,00100,000,0012Two Hamilton High School students were shot and wounded in the parking lot of the school. The attack was believed to be gang-related.[146]
02012-08-24August 24, 2012Homer, Georgia0,000,00110,000,0010A a 16-year-old student at Banks County High School fatally shot himself in a school restroom.
02012-08-27August 27, 2012Perry Hall, Maryland0,000,00100,000,0011Robert Gladden, 15, allegedly took a double barrel shotgun to Perry Hall High School and fired shots inside the school cafeteria. A 17-year-old senior with Down syndrome was hit in the lower back while he was sitting at a table and suffered critical wounds. Gladden was immediately subdued by school faculty members, and was arrested. He is facing numerous attempted murder charges and firearms offenses.[147][148]
02012-09-07September 7, 2012Normal, Illinois0,000,00100,000,0010A student fired multiple gunshots in the ceiling of Normal Community High School, and was subdued by a teacher. A 14-year-old student was arrested and is charged with 16 felony counts.
02012-09-26September 26, 2012Stillwater, Oklahoma0,000,00110,000,0010Cade Poulos, 13, shot himself in the head shortly before classes started at Stillwater Junior High School.[149]
02012-10-31October 31, 2012Los Angeles, California0,000,00100,000,0014At a Halloween party on the University of Southern California campus, an argument escalated and a man pulled out a handgun and shot Geno Hall seven times, critically wounding him. Three other people, who were not students of USC, were shot and wounded and hospitalized with less serious injuries. Brandon Spencer, 20, was arrested for the shooting.
02012-11-29November 29, 2012Taylorsville, Utah0,000,00110,000,0010David Phan, 14, shot himself in front of other students. Phan reportedly was suspended from Bennion Junior High School on the day of his suicide. His mother picked him up from school at about 1:30 pm[150] and took her son home before returning to work. According to the local newspaper, it was not immediately clear why Phan was suspended from the school. Phan then took a gun from a locked safe in his home[150] and walked back to the school around 3 pm. He met a group of students on the pedestrian bridge over 6200 South near 2700 West, where he pulled out the gun he had carried with and shot himself in front of those students. The 911 call was received at 3:05 pm. Later investigation revealed that Phan could have been a victim of bullying for being thought a homosexual.[151] The Granite School District has not publicly released the reason for his suspension or any possible records of him having been bullied.
02012-12-14December 14, 2012Newtown, Connecticut0,000,001280,000,0012Adam Lanza, aged 20, killed 27 people and himself at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. He first killed his mother at their shared home before taking her guns and driving to the school. During the attack, 20 first-grade children aged six and seven were killed, along with six adults, including the principal and the school psychologist.[152]
02013-01-10January 10, 2013Taft, California0,000,00100,000,0012A gunman entered a science classroom of Taft Union High School with a 12 gauge shotgun and opened fire. A 16-year-old male student, identified as Bowe Cleveland, was shot in the chest and critically wounded. Another student was shot at, but was not hit. The classroom teacher, Ryan Heber, convinced him to drop his weapon, and the gunman followed his order and was later arrested. Additionally, Heber suffered a minor wound from being grazed by a shotgun pellet during the ordeal. The gunman is suspected to be a 16-year-old student of the school, Bryan Oliver. Cleveland and the other student that was shot at are both believed to be intended targets of the gunman. On January 14, Oliver was charged with two counts of attempted murder and assault with a firearm.[153][154]
02013-01-12January 12, 2013Detroit, Michigan0,000,00100,000,0011A 16-year-old boy was shot in a field across the school campus after a basketball game was held at Osborn High School. He was hospitalized in serious condition.[155]

List of notable U.S. school attacks

NameLocationDateYearNumber of deathsSSRI usePerpetrator fate
Bath School disasterBath Township, MichiganMay 18192745Committed a suicide bombing
University of Texas massacreAustin, TexasAugust 1196616Killed by police and armed citizens
Grove Elementary SchoolGrove, OklahomaNovember 819711
Olean High School shooting1Olean, New YorkDecember 3019743Taken alive by police and committed suicide in prison
St. James Grammar SchoolPenns Grove, New JerseyFebruary 2419751
Princeton Day SchoolPrinceton, New JerseyApril 319751
California State University, Fullerton massacreFullerton, CaliforniaJuly 1219767Surrendered and committed to treatment for mental disorder
Murchison Junior High SchoolAustin, TexasMay 1819781
Cleveland Elementary School shootingSan Diego, CaliforniaJanuary 2919792Surrendered after siege and imprisoned
Deer Creek Middle School shootingLittleton, ColoradoApril 719821Arrested and served 12 years in prison
Parkway South Middle School shootingManchester, MissouriJanuary 2019832Committed suicide
Goddard Middle School shootingGoddard, KansasJanuary 2119851
Portland Junior High School shootingPortland, ConnecticutDecember 1019851
Pine Forest Senior High SchoolFayetteville, North CarolinaMay 61986
Pinellas Park High SchoolLargo, FloridaFebruary 1119881Both arrested and served time in prison
Hubbard Woods School shootingWinnetka, IllinoisMay 2019881Committed suicide
Atlantic Shores Christian School shootingChesapeake, VirginiaDecember 1619881
Cleveland School massacreStockton, CaliforniaJanuary 1719896Committed suicide
University of Iowa shootingIowa City, IowaNovember 119916Committed suicide
Lindhurst High School shootingOlivehurst, CaliforniaMay 119924Surrendered after siege and imprisoned
Palo Duro High School shootingAmarillo, TexasSeptember 1119920
Berkner High School shootingRichardson, TexasNovember 619921
Edward Tilden High School shootingChicago, IllinoisNovember 2019921
Simon's Rock College of Bard shootingGreat Barrington, MassachusettsDecember 1419922Surrendered and imprisoned
East Carter High School shootingGrayson, KentuckyJanuary 1819932Surrendered after siege and imprisoned
Fairfax High School shootingLos Angeles, CaliforniaJanuary 2119931
Amityville High School shootingAmityville, New YorkFebruary 119931
Reseda High School shootingReseda, CaliforniaFebruary 2219931Arrested and imprisoned
Wauwatosa West High School shootingWauwatosa, WisconsinDecember 119931Arrested and imprisoned
Chelsea High School shootingChelsea, MichiganDecember 1719931Surrendered
Central Middle School shootingSheridan, WyomingSeptember 1719931
Margaret Leary Elementary School shootingButte, MontanaApril 1219941
Grimsley High School shootingGreensboro, North CarolinaOctober 1219941
Wickliffe Middle School shootingWickliffe, OhioNovember 719941Arrested and imprisoned
Blackville-Hilda High School shootingBlackville, South CarolinaOctober 1219952Committed suicide
Richland High School shootingLynnville, TennesseeNovember 1519952Arrested and imprisoned
Frontier Middle School shootingMoses Lake, WashingtonFebruary 219963Subdued by adult and imprisoned
Hamilton High School shootingScottdale, GeorgiaFebruary 219961
San Diego State University shootingSan Diego, CaliforniaAugust 1519963Surrendered and imprisoned
Hetzel Union Building shootingState College, PennsylvaniaSeptember 1719961
Bethel Regional High School shootingBethel, AlaskaFebruary 1919972Surrendered and imprisoned
Pearl High School shootingPearl, MississippiOctober 119972Stopped by armed adult and imprisoned; mother was killed before the shooting
Heath High School shootingPaducah, KentuckyDecember 119973Surrendered and imprisoned
Westside Middle School shootingJonesboro, ArkansasMarch 2419985Both arrested and served time in prison
Parker Middle School dance shooting1Edinboro, PennsylvaniaApril 2419981Stopped by armed adult and imprisoned
Thurston High School shootingSpringfield, OregonMay 2119982Subdued by several students and imprisoned; parents were killed before the shooting
Columbine High School massacreLittleton, ColoradoApril 20199915Yes[156]Both committed suicide
Heritage High School shootingConyers, GeorgiaMay 2019990Surrendered and imprisoned
Fort Gibson Middle School shootingFort Gibson, OklahomaDecember 619990
Buell Elementary School shootingMount Morris Township, MichiganFebruary 2920001Instantly surrendered, but not arrested; adult served time in prison for leaving weapon in easy reach of shooter
Lake Worth Middle School shootingLake Worth, FloridaMay 2620001Arrested and imprisoned
University of Arkansas shootingFayetteville, ArkansasAugust 2820002[136][137][138]
Santana High School shootingSantee, CaliforniaMarch 520012Surrendered and imprisoned
Granite Hills High School shootingEl Cajon, CaliforniaMarch 2220010
Martin Luther King, Jr. High School shootingManhattan, New York City, New YorkJanuary 1520020
Appalachian School of Law shootingGrundy, VirginiaJanuary 1620023Subdued and imprisoned
University of Arizona Nursing School shootingTucson, ArizonaOctober 2820024
John McDonogh High School shootingNew Orleans, LouisianaApril 1420031Both arrested and imprisoned
Red Lion Area Junior High School shootingsRed Lion, PennsylvaniaApril 2420032Committed suicide
Case Western Reserve University shootingCleveland, OhioMay 920031[157]Arrested and imprisoned
Rocori High School shootingCold Spring, MinnesotaSeptember 2420032Surrendered to adult and imprisoned
Columbia High School shootingEast Greenbush, New YorkFebruary 920040
Fairleigh Dickinson University shootingFlorham Park, New JerseyApril 420040[158]
Randallstown High School shootingRandallstown, MarylandMay 720040
Red Lake Senior High School massacreRed Lake, MinnesotaMarch 2120058Yes[159]Committed suicide; grandfather and his girlfriend were killed before the shooting
Campbell County High School shootingJacksboro, TennesseeNovember 820051Subdued by adult and imprisoned
Pine Middle School shootingReno, NevadaMarch 1420060Surrendered and served time in community service
Essex Elementary School shooting[160]Essex, VermontAugust 2420062
Orange High School shootingHillsborough, North CarolinaAugust 3020060Arrested and imprisoned; father was killed before the shooting
Platte Canyon High School shootingBailey, ColoradoSeptember 2720062Committed suicide after siege
Weston High School shootingCazenovia, WisconsinSeptember 2920061Subdued by adult and imprisoned
Amish school shootingNickel Mines, PennsylvaniaOctober 220066Committed suicide after siege
Henry Foss High School shootingTacoma, WashingtonJanuary 320071
Herbert Henry Dow High SchoolMidland, MichiganMarch 820071
University of North Carolina at GreensboroGreensboro, North CarolinaMarch 2420070[161]
University of Washington shootingSeattle, WashingtonApril 220072
Virginia Tech massacreBlacksburg, VirginiaApril 16200733Committed suicide
Delaware State University shootingDover, DelawareSeptember 2120071Arrested and imprisoned
SuccessTech Academy shootingCleveland, OhioOctober 1020071Committed suicide
Louisiana Technical College shootingBaton Rouge, LouisianaFebruary 820083Committed suicide
Mitchell High School shootingMemphis, TennesseeFebruary 1120080
E.O. Green Junior High School shootingOxnard, CaliforniaFebruary 1220081Arrested and imprisoned
Northern Illinois University massacreDeKalb, IllinoisFebruary 1420086Committed suicide
Davidson High School shootingMobile, AlabamaMarch 920081
Central High School shootingKnoxville, TennesseeAugust 2120081Arrested and imprisoned
Henry Ford High School shootingDetroit, MichiganOctober 1620081
2008 University of Central Arkansas shootingsConway, ArkansasOctober 2720082Two of four suspects were arrested
Dillard High School shootingFort Lauderdale, FloridaNovember 1220081 [162]
Henry Ford Community College shootingDearborn, MichiganApril 1020092
Hampton UniversityHampton, VirginiaApril 2620090
Covina High School shootingCovina, CaliforniaApril 3020090[163]
Wesleyan University1Middletown, ConnecticutMay 120091
Canandaigua Academy shootingCanandaigua, New YorkMay 520091
Harvard UniversityCambridge, MassachusettsMay 1820091 [164]
Larose-Cut Off Middle School shootingLarose, LouisianaMay 1820091
Skyline College shootingSan Bruno, CaliforniaSeptember 220090
Atlanta University CenterAtlanta, GeorgiaSeptember 320091 [165]
Deer Valley High School shootingAntioch, CaliforniaSeptember 1620090Arrested and imprisoned
Northern Virginia Community CollegeWoodbridge, VirginiaDecember 820090
Discovery Middle SchoolMadison, AlabamaFebruary 520101[166]
University of Alabama in HuntsvilleHuntsville, AlabamaFebruary 1220103[167]Arrested and imprisoned
Deer Creek Middle SchoolLittleton, ColoradoFebruary 2320100[168]Subdued by adults and imprisoned
Birney Elementary SchoolTacoma, WashingtonFebruary 2620101[169]
Ohio State UniversityColumbus, OhioMarch 920102[170]
Belleville Township HS EastBelleville, IllinoisAugust 1720101[171]
University of Texas at AustinAustin, TexasSeptember 2820101[172]Committed suicide
Alisal High SchoolSalinas, CaliforniaOctober 120101[173][174]
Mid-Atlantic Christian UniversityElizabeth City, North CarolinaOctober 320101[175]
Kelly Elementary SchoolCarlsbad, CaliforniaOctober 820100[176][177]Arrested and imprisoned
Marinette High SchoolMarinette, WisconsinNovember 2920101[178]
Millard South High School shootingOmaha, Nebraska, United StatesJanuary 520112[179]Committed suicide
Martinsville West Middle SchoolMartinsville, IndianaMarch 2520110[143]
Worthing High SchoolHouston, TexasMarch 3020111[180]
Ross Elementary SchoolHouston, TexasApril 1920110[181]
San Jose State UniversitySan Jose, CaliforniaMay 1020113[182]
Pearl City Middle SchoolPearl City, HawaiiMay 2320111[183]
Cape Fear High School shootingFayetteville, North CarolinaOctober 2420110[184]
2011 Virginia Tech shootingBlacksburg, VirginiaDecember 820112 [185]Committed suicide
Walpole Elementary SchoolWalpole, New HampshireFebruary 1020120[186]
Chardon High School shootingChardon, OhioFebruary 2720123Arrested and imprisoned
Oikos University shootingOakland, CaliforniaApril 220127Surrendered after siege
Perry Hall High SchoolPerry Hall, MarylandAugust 2720120Subdued by adults and imprisoned
Normal Community High SchoolNormal, IllinoisSeptember 720120
Stillwater Junior High SchoolStillwater, OklahomaSeptember 2620121Committed suicide
Bennion Junior High SchoolTaylorsville, UtahNovember 2920121[187]Committed suicide
Sandy Hook Elementary School shootingNewtown, ConnecticutDecember 14201227Committed suicide; mother was killed before the shooting
Taft Union High School shootingTaft, CaliforniaJanuary 1020130Surrendered and arrested

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See also