Episcopal shooting resonates internationally

Published On: Mar 07 2012 12:29:06 PM EST   Updated On: Mar 07 2012 02:58:08 PM EST

Here to offer some perspective and some advice on how to handle a potentially dangerous workplace situation is channel 4 crime analyst Ken Jefferson.


The tragic nature of the murder-suicide at Episcopal School of Jacksonville has made national and international headlines.

Experts say the story of Dale Regan's killing resonates so deeply because it proves this sort of tragedy can happen anywhere, even a school where people believe their children are safe.

Regan's killing qualifies as a workplace shooting. The man who killed her, 28-year-old Shane Schumerth, was a teacher at Episcopal whom Regan had fired hours earlier.

According to statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor, there are an average of 564 work-related homicides in the U.S. every year.

One in 10 people who die at work will be homicide victims, and four out of every five people killed at work are men, according to the bureau.

More workplace homicides happen in the retail trade, and most workplace homicides are shootings, according to the bureau.

Channel 4 crime analyst Ken Jefferson said that in the case of Regan's killing, perhaps nothing could have prevented it.

"He was a common person there at the school every day," Jefferson said of Schumerth. "For him to walk in even with a guitar case, it wasn't anything unusual at all. It would've been very difficult to prevent this from happening."

Jefferson suggests that employers have a plan in place for when they do fire someone, especially if they think that person might be unstable.

He said employers should make sure everyone in their office knows about the plan and procedure, and if they feel like someone could be dangerous, they should call security or police.


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