On Wednesday night, a 26-year-old man shot three coworkers in the cafeteria of a cold-storage facility in Crete, Nebraska before killing himself. Police are still investigating the shooter’s motive. Does this sound
familiar? Many workplace shootings take place every year, and certainly 2010 has been no different. Here are just a few of the major workplace shootings from this year:
Two weeks ago, a woman shot three colleagues at a cookie factory in Philadelphia, after arguing with them and being suspended from her job. Two of the victims died. The shooter had a valid concealed carry permit and had a gun in her car that she retrieved after being suspended.
Last month, a 35-year-old man opened fire at a Connecticut beer distribution plant after a disciplinary hearing where he resigned for stealing from the company. He killed eight people and injured two others, before killing himself. The shooter complained to family and friends about racism at work.
In March, a disgruntled janitor in danger of losing his job shot and killed his supervisor, injured a coworker, and killed himself at Ohio State University. He had a criminal history, and obtained his guns by avoiding background checks- at least one of the guns he obtained went through a gun show, the other through private sellers.
In February, a University of Alabama professor opened fire during a biology faculty meeting, shooting six colleagues, three fatally. She had recently been denied tenure, had a history of violent reactions, and shot her brother when she was a teenager.
And, in January, a 51-year-old man armed with an assault rifle, shotgun and pistol opened fire at a St. Louis factory where he was a longtime employee. Neighbors report he was angry at management. He killed three coworkers and injured five others before he killed himself.
All of these shooters turned to guns as a way to solve their problems at work, leading to an incredible amount of bloodshed and tears. In just these six incidents, 17 coworkers were killed and 15 more injured. Four of the shooters committed suicide afterward.
It’s no wonder that an Indiana steel company decided to disregard a new state law forcing companies to allow workers to store guns in their cars at work. Instead, they have chosen to “strictly enforce its firearms ban”. While they may get sued, a lawsuit is certainly a better outcome than a shooting.