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People Running Amok

April 18, 2007 | TIM RUTTEN
LESS than two hours after the appalling events Monday at Virginia Tech, as news organizations scrambled to grasp the facts of what had occurred, a strangely disturbing phrase began to worm its way into the coverage. As the number of confirmed fatalities mounted into the mid-20s, broadcasts, wire service reports and newspaper websites began to refer to the massacre as "the deadliest school shooting in American history."
April 17, 2007 | David G. Savage, Times Staff Writer
Virginia Tech, located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of southwestern Virginia and once overshadowed by the state's elite, historic colleges, has been a university on the rise in recent decades. It is the state's largest university, with more than 26,000 students, a leader in producing Ph.D.s and one of the nation's top-ranked schools in engineering and architecture. In the U.S. News and World Report 2007 rankings of public universities, Virginia Tech was 34th.
April 17, 2007 | Richard A. Serrano and Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Times Staff Writers
By the time the gunman entered the classroom and started shooting, Josh Wargo was already halfway out the window. He never looked back. Leaping from the second story of Virginia Tech's Norris Hall, he landed safely, helped some classmates up off the ground and ran away. Wargo, a junior engineering student, was in mechanics class at Norris when he first heard the shots. "At first it didn't really register," he said in an interview Monday. "There was a lot of construction going on outside.
February 14, 2007 | Nicholas Riccardi, Times Staff Writer
The 18-year-old killer pulled his car into an open spot in the parking lot of the Trolley Square Mall in Salt Lake City, stepped out, drew a shotgun and fired at two nearby shoppers. He walked through the mall's west doors and shot a woman. He kept walking and shot five more people who were standing in a gift store packed with Valentine's Day shoppers. If it wasn't for off-duty Ogden Police Officer Ken Hammond dining with his wife nearby, police said, Sulejmen Talovic would have killed far more people in Monday night's shooting rampage.
January 8, 2007 | Jenny Jarvie, Times Staff Writer
Almost two years after a judge, a court reporter and a sheriff's deputy were shot to death at the Fulton County Courthouse, Brian Gene Nichols will stand trial in that courthouse for those crimes. As TV cameras roll, the justice system will be on trial too.
November 21, 2006 | Jeffrey Fleishman, Times Staff Writer
An 18-year-old loner wearing an explosives belt and firing guns stormed his old junior high school in western Germany on Monday, shooting four students and a janitor before killing himself as police surrounded the building. The man, identified only as Sebastian B., rushed the Geschwister-Scholl school in Emsdetten about 9:30 a.m. with smoke canisters, pistols and rifles. Police say he slightly wounded four students and critically injured a janitor, shooting him in the stomach.
October 23, 2006 | From the Associated Press
A gunman opened fire at a bar in the city's Japantown, killing two people and wounding a third, police said Sunday. Joseph Melcher, 25, of Redwood City was arrested shortly after the Saturday night shootings at a bar called The Flow and was booked on suspicion of homicide, attempted homicide and assault with a firearm. Witnesses told authorities that Melcher walked into the bar around 9:15 p.m.
October 7, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
In a cold drizzle, the Amish drove in horse and buggy to a cemetery in Georgetown to bury the fifth girl shot to death by an intruder as details emerged of heroism inside the school. Two of the survivors told their parents that 13-year-old Marian Fisher, one of the slain girls, asked to be shot first, apparently hoping the younger girls would be let go, according to Leroy Zook, whose daughter was the teacher who ran from the school to call police.
September 1, 2006 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
The man accused in this week's hit-and-run rampage that killed a pedestrian and injured at least 18 others was under psychiatric observation Thursday even as he faced charges of murder, attempted murder and battery. Omeed Aziz Popal, 29, was being held in a locked hospital jail cell and his first court appearance was delayed until Wednesday to await a report on his mental state. Relatives say Popal had been growing increasingly unstable.
July 27, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
A Brazilian actor clad only in swimming trunks and toting a gun stormed a TV studio and took a hostage during the filming of the "Snakes and Lizards" soap opera, in which he was once an extra. Ricardo Dualibi, who was sacked from the series in April, fired two shots into the air and seized one employee, a Globo spokeswoman said. He told police he did not intend to hurt anyone and only wanted to draw the studio's attention to his art. He was arrested for attempted murder.
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