Report: U.S. Recorded Highest Number Of Mass Killings In 2019
In 2019, the United States saw the highest number of mass killings on record, according to data compiled by the Associated Press, USA Today and Northeastern University.
BBC News reported that the number of deadly mass violence incidents was 41 last year, with a total of 211 deaths. The database defines mass killings as “four or more people being killed in the same incident, excluding the perpetrator,” and includes “family disputes, drug deals and gang violence.”
The deadliest incidents in 2019 include 12 deaths in Virginia Beach in May and the deaths of 22 people in El Paso, Texas, in August.
Most of the killings — 33 of the 41 — involved firearms, according to researchers. California had the highest number per state, with eight separate incidents last year.
Forty-one marked the highest number of incidents in a year, going back to 2006 when the database began, but BBC News noted that research going back as far as 1970 failed to reveal a year with a greater number of mass killings.
James Densley, a criminologist and professor at Metropolitan State University in Minnesota, told the AP that mass killing incidents are on the rise even though homicides in general are on the decline in the U.S.
"As a percentage of homicides, these mass killings are also accounting for more deaths," Densley said. "This seems to be the age of mass shootings.”