Gun Violence

Gun violence isn't a problem unique to South Florida, but it is South Florida's problem. Gun-related injuries are one of the leading causes of death in the state. And there are even more people who survive bullets.

WLRN is committed to telling the stories of what happens when people are harmed by guns. We do this through continuous coverage of issues and protagonists, as well as by long-term, special projects.

Some of our recent projects:

You can also see our continuous coverage below.

YouTube

In a series of videos posted to his YouTube channel four years ago, the man police say killed two women at a Tallahassee yoga studio before turning the gun on himself expressed deep-seated misogyny that he said was caused by repeated rejections from women he tried to engage with romantically.

A 40-year-old man opened fire on Friday evening in the Hot Yoga Tallahassee studio, shooting six people in total, two fatally, and pistol-whipping a seventh person before killing himself, Tallahassee police said.

Police identified the dead as Nancy Van Vessem, 61, and Maura Binkley, 21.

Two people were admitted to a hospital and are in stable condition while three others have been released from the hospital, police said.

Updated Oct. 31 at 4:34 p.m. ET

Eleven people were killed on Saturday when a gunman entered Pittsburgh's Tree of Life synagogue and opened fire on the congregants. The victims ranged in age from 54 to 97; eight were men, three were women. Two of them were brothers, and two were a married couple.

Chuck Diamond was a rabbi at Tree of Life until about a year ago, and he remains a member of the community, living just around the corner from the synagogue. He knew many of the victims.

Updated at 12:14 a.m. ET on Sunday

Federal prosecutors have charged Robert Bowers, the 46-year-old suspected gunman who carried out a mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue Saturday morning, with 29 counts in the deaths of 11 people, The Associated Press reports.

"Please know that justice in this case will be swift and it will be severe," Scott Brady, the chief federal prosecutor in western Pennsylvania, said at a news conference, according to the AP, describing the massacre as a "terrible and unspeakable act of hate."

Nancy Pelosi/Ted Deutch
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

It's been a little over eight months since the shooting that took 17 people’s lives in Parkland. 

At a roundtable in Coral Springs City Hall on Wednesday, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and South Florida Congressman Ted Deutch met with grieving alumni, parents and students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. 

"All I’m ever asked is 'how are you, how is everything going?'" Sarah Stricker, 15, a student, told the lawmakers. "The only thing I’m doing is surviving - I can’t do anything else." 

It was a no-news-is-good-news kind of milestone: For the first time in at least 25 years, New York City just had a weekend with no shootings.

"A city of 8.6 million people — not a single shooting for three days," Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Monday, according to CNN. "Let's thank the NYPD for what they've achieved."

In the city's five boroughs, no shootings were reported from Friday to Sunday.

Shine MSD
Caitie Switalski / WLRN News

More than 1,500 people gathered for the Actions For Change festival in Parkland’s Pine Trails Park Sunday night, where celebrities and performers like  Alyssa Milano and Skip Marley rallied people to register to vote.

Drama students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School performed songs from their soon-to-be-released album. One is a nod to the clear backpacks they had to carry right after the shooting - It's called 'Transparent':

Updated at 4:44 p.m. ET

Three people were killed in a workplace shooting Thursday morning in northeast Maryland. Several other people were wounded during the attack at a Rite Aid distribution center.

The shooter, identified by the sheriff as Snochia Moseley, 26, of Baltimore County, also died; she shot herself in the head.

At Congregation Kol Tikvah in Parkland last week, Rabbi Bradd Boxman told the congregation there was an elephant in the room. The elephant was a prayer, or a piyyut, a liturgical poem, that has been recited during the Jewish New Year for centuries.

The prayer, the Unetaneh Tokef, is about who will live and who will die in the coming year, and how. It involves asking to be inscribed in the book of life, to remain among the living. 

Sam Turken / WLRN

Activists and state elected officials rallied on Saturday outside the Miami-Dade County Youth Fair, calling for an end to gun shows at the center. 

Protestors waved signs and chanted as they faulted the Fair for allowing the gun shows to continue at the fairgrounds in Tamiami Park for more than three decades. 

While the center is home to the annual Youth Fair in the spring, the nonprofit — the Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition Inc. — leases the property from the county and holds other events there throughout the year. 

Who Is David Katz, The Jacksonville Mass Shooter?

Aug 27, 2018
www.easports.com/madden-nfl

Police have identified the suspected gunman in Sunday’s mass shooting in Jacksonville, Florida.

During an evening press conference, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office announced that 24-year-old David Katz is believed to have opened fire at a football video game tournament at The Landing in downtown Jacksonville.

Officials said Katz turned the gun on himself after firing several bullets, killing at least two people and injuring more than a dozen others. Police said the death toll may climb.

Ryen Aleman had headphones on and a controller in his hand, playing the popular football video game Madden NFL at a tournament in Jacksonville, Fla., when there were loud pops behind him. Other competitors began bolting out of the room. Something was wrong, he thought. When he realized the jarring sound was gunfire, Aleman told his video game opponent and instructed him to follow his lead.

"Let's crawl down. Let's crawl to the restroom," he said.

Miami Herald

Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert has national ambitions for his city. He was recently named President of the African American Mayors Association and took part in the U.S. Conference of Mayors earlier this summer.

Gilbert says the key to improving race relations between police officers and the community starts with engaging youth. He supports the idea of community policing and opening police academies for kids to meet police officers.

“The way you address violence long term is by accessing it early,” Gilbert said.

Allen Eyestone / The Palm Beach Post

The Palm Beach County school district is planning changes for upcoming football games after two people were shot during a pre-season match late Friday night.

Some football games will be played on Saturday mornings, and remaining Friday games will start an hour earlier, at 6 p.m., as a result of the shooting during the Palm Beach Central High School game against William T. Dwyer High School. Also, from now on, only clear bags will be allowed at games, and there will be no re-entry allowed if people leave the stadium during a game.

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