UK & World News

  • 15 December 2012, 4:04

Connecticut Shooting: History Of US Massacres

The shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, is among the deadliest in modern US history.

It is on a similar scale to the massacre at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia, in April 2007, when Seung-Hui Cho opened fire inside two of the school's buildings, killing 32 students and staff.

Victims of the Connecticut shooting are much younger than the students who died at Virginia Tech, most of whom were in their late teens or early twenties.

In April, One Goh walked into Oikos University in Oakland, California, and opened fire. The 43-year-old had reportedly been expelled from the institution. Seven people died and injured three others. According to reports, the gunman lined up his victims and shot them. He is also thought to have aimed at people who were running away.

In 2006 a gunman killed five young girls at an Amish school in Pennsylvania. Five others were injured. The killer, Charles Carl Roberts VI, shot himself dead.

Such was the devastation in the community, the school was later demolished.

One of the most notorious attacks in US history happened in April 1999 when Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold murdered 12 students and a teacher at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, before killing themselves.

The state was the scene of another massacre in July this year, when James Holmes opened fire at a premiere of Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises in Aurora, killing 12 people and injuring at least 58.

Other recent massacres include an attack on the Fort Hood military base in Killeen, Texas, in November 2009, during which 13 people were killed.

It was described by the US Senate as "the worst terrorist attack on US soil since September 11".

In October 1991, 23 people were shot dead at Luby's cafeteria in Killeen, Texas, while in July 1984, 21 diners were shot dead at a McDonald's restaurant in San Ysidro, California.

But the US is not the only country to suffer such atrocities.

Last year, a man believed to be a former student shot 10 people dead at a school in Rio de Janeiro. He wounded 18 others before taking his own life.

In March, 2009, nine pupils, three teachers and three passers-by were killed in a school shooting in Winnenden, Germany, by a former student. He also killed himself.

Finland suffered two school shootings in consecutive years. In 2007, and 18-year-old killed five boys, two girls and the headteacher in the south of the country. He committed suicide. A year later, 11 people died at a training school in Kauhajoki. The toll included the gunman.

Again in Germany, in 2002, some 16 people were gunned down at a school in Erfurt. The gunman was a former pupil who was apparently angry at being expelled.

And in Scotland in 1996 a deranged gun collector killed 16 young children and their teacher at a school in Dunblane. Forty-three-year-old Thomas Hamilton went on the kill himself.