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School plotters often are bullied, suffer from depression

Colleen Long, AP News |

Students who were making plans to attack schools showed the same types of troubled histories as those who carried them out. They were badly bullied, often suffered from depression with stress at home and exhibited behavior that worried others, according to a U.S. Secret Service study released Tuesday that examined 67 thwarted school plots nationwide. Those warning signs are also found in many of the adults who commit mass shootings.

The study by the Secret Service’s National Threat Assessment Center is a twist on the study of school shootings. The group analyzed 100 students responsible for plotting 67 attacks nationwide from 2006-18 in K-12 schools. It’s a companion report to its study in 2019 on student attackers, the most comprehensive analysis of school shootings since the 1999 Columbine High School killings.

“The findings demonstrate there are almost always intervention points available before a student resorts to violence,” said Lina Alathari, the center’s head. 


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