CNN has been circulating a statistic following the tragedies at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and Santa Fe High School claiming that 22 school shootings have already occurred so far in 2018 — but it inflated that number.
According to the network, the parameters for its statistic include:
- A shooting that involved at least one person being shot (not including the shooter)
- A shooting that occurred on school grounds
- We included grades K through college/university level
- We included gang violence, fights and domestic violence
- We included accidental discharge of a firearm as long as the first two parameters are met
Including today’s shooting incident at a Texas high school, this year there have already been 22 school shootings where someone was hurt or killed. That averages out to more than 1 shooting a week. https://t.co/DL1wCUAipq pic.twitter.com/Qsw0WlLlJv
— CNN (@CNN) May 18, 2018
The problem, however, is that CNN included accidental shootings and shootings in which neither the shooter nor the victims were students or faculty at the school in its count — and even counted an incident in which a student was bruised after being shot with a BB gun.
If the list just included school shootings involving an actual gun on campus in which the gunman or victim was a student, the Washington Free Beacon noted, just 12 of the 22 would qualify. Of those, four resulted in fatalities, as most were targeted attacks on a single victim or did not involve serious injuries.Rhona Wise/Getty Images
Three of the school shootings in 2018 resulted in multiple deaths, and two were mass shootings in which more than four people were killed.
Furthermore, Northeastern University revealed its findings of a study in February, which showed that school shootings are no more common than they were in the 1990s and that schools have actually become safer since then.
“Since 1996, there have been 16 multiple victim shootings in schools, or incidents involving 4 or more victims and at least 2 deaths by firearms, excluding the assailant,” the university said of the research. “Of these, 8 are mass shootings, or incidents involving 4 or more deaths, excluding the assailant.”