Killers wearing Body Armor – New Trend?

The thought had crossed my mind listening to the news over the past 48 hours – both the perpetrator of the Binghamton, New York, massacre and the Pittsburgh Police Officer slayings were wearing body armor.

Our good friend and Academy Instructor, Rick Neal, pointed out the similarities to me this morning that started my thinking that this violent modus operandi needs to be carefully studied. Rick is in a position to know about these types of situations having recently retired as a S.W.A.T. Commander in Florida and having responded to more than three hundred “call outs”.

Another person who is well qualified to comment on these type of mass killings is Dr. Park Dietz, a criminologist and forensic psychiatrist at UCLA who was a consultant on the Columbine killings in 1999. Dr. Dietz made a disturbing observation, but one that many of us in the security profession have known for a long time; people in the respective communities were aware of both killer’s propensity to have carried out something of this magnitude.

According to Dr. Dietz; “many people knew of the shooters’ anger, unreasonableness, the fact that they had made previous threats and were armed. In fact, they’ve known for a long time, but none of them did what they should have done with that information”.

We wonder how many similar killers are lurking out there amongst us and how many of us know they they are there, but are not doing “the right thing”. If you know, tell somebody before any more innocent lives are lost.

Police Officers are hard working public servants who are more than glad to come to our assistance when we call them – regardless of the dangers involved. We only have to look at the brave actions of Officer Kelly in Pittsburgh to know that. This brave officer was off-duty at home when he heard the shots in the neighborhood and ran out to help. Let’s work with them and give them a fair fighting chance so they don’t have to go into a situation blind.

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