COVID-19 Reporting and Information • HEERF I & II

University Police

Characteristics of an Active Shooter

Active shooters usually focus on assaulting persons with whom they come into contact. Their intention to cause bodily harm is usually an expression of hatred or rage rather than the commission of a crime.

An active shooter is likely to engage more than one target. Active shooters may be intent on killing numerous people as quickly as possible.

Generally the first indication of the presence of an active shooter is when they begin their assault.

Active shooters usually go to locations where potential victims are numerous and easily accessible, such as cafeterias, classrooms, and libraries.

Active shooters may be indiscriminate in their violence or they may seek specific targets. Active shooters usually have some degree of familiarity with the location they choose for the assault.

Historically, active shooters have not attempted to hide their identity or conceal the commission of their attacks. Escape from law enforcement is usually not a priority of the active shooter as they may be suicidal, deciding to die in the course of their actions, either at the hands of law enforcement or in a self-inflicted manner.

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