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What about the mass shootings that didn't happen?

FBI reports 150 mass shootings stopped last year
Posted at 2:11 PM, Nov 09, 2017

You hear about mass shootings happening across the nation, but what you rarely hear about are the ones that didn’t happen.

About 2 years ago, one Colorado high school was the location for a potential mass shooting.

“There are more interventions then there are mass shootings," said Kevin Klein, director of the Colorado Division of Homeland Security.

In the last year, the FBI reports 150 mass shootings did not happen because of threat assessment and prevention.

"That doesn’t include what happens on a day-to-day basis in local law enforcement, mental health community or social services," Klein said.

Homeland Security reports that in 81 percent of mass shooting cases, the offender told somebody about their plan. In 59 percent of the cases, the shooter told more than one person about their plan to kill.

About 8 miles away from the school where a potential shooting was going to take place is a school America knows all too well, Columbine High School. After the shooting at Columbine, local law enforcement created a program called text a tip.

That program is the same program that prevented the other Colorado school from having a mass shooting.  

Dr. Russell Palarea is the president of the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals. He says the public’s tips are everything. They are essential to preventing bad things from happening.

'If you have a concern, say something," Palarea said.

ATAP designs programs to help potential offenders find positive outlets in society and help them change their violent thinking.

The program includes getting the offender counseling, helping them take part in community service, having friends and families do weekly check-ins and working with a school tutor weekly.

“It’s an ongoing continuous process," Palarea said. "It’s not a one shot deal. We need to continually work with these folks to find pro-social ways to manage their stress and resolve their problems.

"Otherwise, some folks will revert back to their violent tendencies and ultimately commit attacks.”