The number of active-shooter incidents in the U.S. decreased slightly last year. Then again, it would have been difficult to top the record-setting carnage of 2017.
A new FBI report based on 2018 data reveals there were 27 instances of active shooters – defined by the bureau as one or more persons trying to kill others with a firearm in a populated area – and they resulted in 85 deaths and 128 people getting injured, not all by gunfire.
Most deadly among those events was the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where a teenager armed with a semiautomatic rifle killed 17 students and staffers.
While falling short of the bloodshed of 2017 – when 30 incidents led to 138 deaths and 593 wounded, including 58 fatalities at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas – last year’s totals remained consistent with a troubling trend.
In the first seven years since the FBI began producing the report in 2000, there was an average of 6.4 active-shooter incidents, and that figure more than doubled to 16.4 the next seven years. It has been at least in the 20s every year since then, spiking in the last two.
“It’s encouraging that the number of active shooting incidents dropped from an all-time high in 2017, but last year still saw the second-most incidents this century,’’ Kyleanne Hunter, VP of Programs at the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, told USA TODAY. more