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LA Theater Shooting

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by rocketsjudoka, Jul 24, 2015.

  1. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    I'm starting a thread since some of the issues around this case will end up here sooner or later.

    My biggest issue with this case is how can a man with a history of mental illness who has made violent threats, and was apparently known to the police, still get a gun and ammo? We've seen this with VA-Tech, Aurora, CO and Newtown where people with a known history of mental illness, have been committed and also there have been warnings about possible violent behavior still get hold of lethal weapons.

    http://www.denverpost.com/breakingn...-dead-movie-theater-shooting-including-gunman

    Theater gunman's family called him mentally ill, violent
    LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) — The man who killed two people and wounded nine others at a "Trainwreck" showing was so mentally ill and violent that years ago, his wife hid his guns and his family had him hospitalized against his will before obtaining a court order to keep him away, according to court documents, which also show his wife filed for divorce this year.

    John Russel Houser, 59, stood up about 20 minutes into the movie and fired first at two people sitting in front of him, then aimed his handgun at others, firing at least 13 times, police said Friday.

    "They heard a couple of pops and didn't know what it was," said Randall Mann, whose 21-year-old daughter, Emily, was sitting in the same row as the shooter.

    She told her father that she did not hear the shooter say anything before opening fire. "And then they saw the muzzle flashes, and that's when they knew what was going on. She hit the floor immediately."

    Randall Mann said his daughter and her friend escaped, uninjured but traumatized.

    Police say Houser had one additional magazine of bullets for his handgun as he tried to escape. Then, when he spotted police officers outside, he turned around and pushed back through the fleeing crowd. The officers tailed him into the theater and heard a single shot before finding him dead inside, police said.

    Houser parked his 1995 blue Lincoln Continental — with a mismatched license plate — by the theater's exit door, and disguises including glasses and wigs were found in a search of his room at a nearby Motel 6, police said.

    "It is apparent that he was intent on shooting and then escaping," Lafayette Police Chief Jim Craft said.

    Police were looking at online postings they believed Houser wrote to learn more about him and try to figure out his motive, superintendent Col. Michael D. Edmonson said Friday.

    In the 1990s, he frequently appeared on a local television call-in show, advocating violence against people involved in abortions, said Calvin Floyd, who hosted the morning show on WLTZ-TV in Columbus, Georgia.

    Houser also espoused other radical views, including his opposition to women in the workplace. Floyd described Houser as an "angry man" who made "wild accusations" about all sorts of topics, and said he put him on to counter a Democratic voice because "he could make the phones ring."

    The two fatalities were identified as 33-year-old Jillian Johnson and 21-year-old Mayci Breaux. At least one of the wounded, ranging from their late teens to their late 60s, was in critical condition, Craft said. Two were released from the hospital.

    Theatergoers said the gunman sat alone and said nothing before he stood up and opened fire at Thursday's 7:10 p.m. showing of "Trainwreck" at the Grand 16 theater.

    "We heard a loud pop we thought was a firecracker," Katie Domingue told The Advertiser. "He wasn't saying anything. I didn't hear anybody screaming either."

    Domingue said she and her fiance ran for the nearest exit, leaving behind her shoes and purse.

    Stories of heroism emerged. Presidential hopeful Gov. Bobby Jindal, who traveled to the scene, said a teacher jumped in front of a second teacher, taking a bullet for her. The second teacher then managed to pull a fire alarm to alert other moviegoers, he said.

    "Her friend literally jumped over her and, by her account, actually saved her life," Jindal said.

    Houser studied accounting in Georgia and earned a law degree at Faulkner University in Alabama, but the Alabama State Bar said it has no record he ever tried to take the bar exam to become a lawyer.

    Houser "has a history of mental health issues, i.e., manic depression and/or bi-polar disorder," his family said in court documents in 2008, when he made violent threats in an effort to stop his daughter's wedding. A judge granted the family's petition to have him involuntarily committed to a hospital as "a danger to himself and others."


    Houser refused to back down after getting out, however, so his wife, daughter and other relatives also obtained a protective order preventing him from coming near them. Houser was living in Phenix City, Alabama, by then, but came and "perpetrated various acts of family violence" at their home in Carroll County, Georgia, they said.

    His daughter, Kirbey Ellen Houser, was engaged to Andrew Michael Broome at the time, and though they were 23 and 26, he felt they were too young to be married. "He has exhibited extreme erratic behavior and has made ominous as well as disturbing statements" that their marriage would not occur, the filing says.

    Police weren't sure why Houser ended up in Louisiana seven years later.

    "It just seems like he was kind of drifting along," Craft said. He had an uncle that once lived in Lafayette, but he died 35 years ago. "We don't know why he decided to stop and stay in Lafayette."

    State police superintendent Col. Michael D. Edmonson said there were about 100 people inside the theater at the time of the shooting. Keys, shoes and purses were all left behind.

    About a dozen law enforcement personnel descended on the Motel 6 in Lafayette where Houser had been staying. An officer carried out a cardboard box from the room and other officers could be seen knocking on neighboring doors.

    Edmonson said police believe the gunman did not wage any other attacks Thursday night before opening fire in the theater.

    "Trainwreck" star Amy Schumer tweeted: "My heart is broken and all my thoughts and prayers are with everyone in Louisiana." The comedy stars Schumer as a magazine writer who decides to live a life of promiscuity after her father convinces her that monogamy isn't realistic, but in spite of her best efforts, finds herself falling in love with one of her interview subjects.

    Gov. Jindal called the shooting "an awful night for Louisiana."

    "What we can do now is we can pray," Jindal said. "We can hug these families. We can shower them with love, thoughts and prayers."

    President Barack Obama was briefed on Air Force One by Lisa Monaco, his homeland security adviser, while on his way to Africa. He asked his team to keep him updated on the investigation and the status of the wounded, and offered his thoughts and prayers to the families of those killed, the White House said.

    The Louisiana shooting happened three years after James Holmes entered a crowded movie theater in suburban Denver and opened fire during the premier of a Batman film, killing 12 people, wounding 70 others. The jury found Thursday that the death penalty is justified, and is hearing evidence about James Holmes' schizophrenia before issuing a sentence.
     
  2. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    Of course nothing is going to be done about this. What I'm already expecting is all the talk that this means more people should be armed so that brave gun owners can shoot it out with the guy in a crowded darkened and chaotic theater.
     
  3. Bobbythegreat

    Bobbythegreat Member
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    What would you have done about it?
     
  4. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    Change the laws so people with a history of mental illness and / or violent crimes cannot get guns.
     
  5. Bobbythegreat

    Bobbythegreat Member
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    I could see that, and Louisiana already bars people like that from getting CHL's but do you really think it would stop the problem?
     
  6. bongman

    bongman Member

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    Having stop lights does not prevent people from beating them and occasionally cause damage to property and lives. Should we remove them?

    The fact of the matter is, without those lights, we would have more accidents.
     
  7. Bobbythegreat

    Bobbythegreat Member
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    Slightly different scenario in that taking away someone's otherwise constitutionally protected rights is a little different than adding or removing traffic lights.

    That said, I think mental illness or history of violent crime is a perfectly good reason for stripping one of that right....it's just not something that should be done lightly IMO
     
  8. bongman

    bongman Member

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    It is an exact analogy. Your question was, will it prevent it? NO LAW will ever prevent something from happening a 100%. The best it can do is 'attempt' to minimize.
     
  9. Space Ghost

    Space Ghost Contributing Member

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    Yeahhhh except Bobby didn't suggest doing away with those laws. Reading comprehension failure.

    The question was, "How do you keep violent and mentally ill people from getting guns?". While the OP is trying to ask a serious question, its really a rhetorical question meant to bait the trolls.

    If the OP was asking for a serious and mature debate, he would ask "How do we marginalize mass shootings and get mentally ill people help?". You're simply not going to stop every mass shooting. Nearly every mass shooting has gotten their weapons in a different way. The common theme among them all is that they would have found a way to get them one way or another. We dont live in a world where we can simply rewind time and see what policies work best.

    Futher, if gun control was the center of debate, we would be more concerned with dozens of single incidents that happen all day and everyday instead of the occasional sensational mass shootings. More lives would be saved from gun shots if we focused on the problem as a whole instead of whatever the latest mass shootings choice of weapon was.
     
  10. Bobbythegreat

    Bobbythegreat Member
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    That's sort of the direction I was going. There's nothing wrong with making potential tools of violence more difficult for the mentally ill or those with a history of violence to acquire, but I don't think that solves the problem because it doesn't actually address the problem.

    The problem is people who are mentally ill or violent. Finding a way to identify and help those people is more important IMO. Simply making it to where a mentally ill or violent person would have to steal a gun in order to use one isn't going to stop them from hurting people if nothing else is done.
     
  11. Cohete Rojo

    Cohete Rojo Contributing Member

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    Sandy Hook
     
  12. bongman

    bongman Member

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    We will have to agree to agree on this one :grin:

    I have a feeling that discussions of solving mental health will eventually lead us to healthcare which in turn.. you know whats next. :p
     
  13. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    I'm asking a very serious question. How can we keep mentally ill people from getting guns and committing violence?

    With the Va-Tech and Gabby Giffords' shooting they got them legally. With the Newtown shootings a supposedly responsible gun owner gave the shooter a gun only to become his first victim. We don't yet know how this guy got his gun but it wouldn't surprise me if he go it legally.

    This isn't an either or situation. We should address mental illness but that doesn't mean we ignore the availability of these people to firearms. While yes guns don't kill people, people kill people guns make it much much easier to kill people. I've cited this before but the same day that the Newtown shooting happened a school in China was attacked by a deranged individual. The difference was the one in China had a knife while the Adam Lanza had a gun. 20 children in China were attacked and they all survived.

    You say they all got their weapons in a different way and are trying to make mental illness the common factor. Have you considered that each of their mental illnesses are different and have different triggers? Why not also look at keeping people like this from getting guns at the same time as we look them more treatment.
     
  14. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    If you read my posts I address that. Adam Lanza's mother who was supposedly a responsible gun owner taught her son how to shoot and gave him a gun. Which he used on her and then go hold of her arsenal. If even responsible gun owners are allowing mentally ill family members to have guns and not securing their weapons well enough that those mentally ill family members are getting to me that is a problem.
     
  15. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    But it will make it more difficult for them to carry out their killing.

    I agree we can't stop all mass killings. We can make it much more difficult for them to happen by making it harder for the mentally ill and violent to get their hands on these type of weapons.
     
  16. Space Ghost

    Space Ghost Contributing Member

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    You think you are asking a serious question expecting a serious answer. It garners nothing more than a giant "LOL" from the realists. The proof is your comparison to China. China does not have the 2nd amendment. Its easy to live in an oppressive country and take away everyone's rights and disarm them. Is that the environment where you want to live? That is china and that is how they prevent mass shootings.

    We live in America, where a person can collect an arsenal of 1000+ firearms in their basement legally and with nobody even realizing it exists. Guns are our culture with a store selling guns on every other corner. And you seriously ask how do we keep guns out of the "wrong" hands? Again, "LOL".

    If you would suggest doing away with the 2nd Amendment and taking up everyone's guns, I would at least respect your opinion and acknowledge that is a solution.

    The reality is there is no practical solution at this time. The restrictions we need simply will not pass in law. We should instead concentrate on identifying the crazies and marginalize them. Additionally, we should concentrate on reducing overall gunshot deaths in general.
     
  17. StupidMoniker

    StupidMoniker I lost a bet
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    It is illegal in California for a person who has previously been convicted of a felony to posses a firearm, or even ammunition. It is in fact another felony, and the punishment is up to three years in state prison. Every day in my county people are charged with this offense. Clearly prohibition does not keep guns out of their hands. Making it a felony to simply possess one bullet does not stop people from possessing guns. Just like prohibition of any other easily movable good does not prevent people that want that item from getting it. Prohibition doesn't work, as you would think this country would have learned by now with alcohol and drug prohibition.
     
  18. Remii

    Remii Member

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    Well, I guess the movie must have really sucked.
     
  19. The Real Shady

    The Real Shady Contributing Member

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    It's actually quite funny.
     
  20. Obito

    Obito Contributing Member

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    It's 2015, I don't think many 2a supporters are against some sort of written psychological test being administered on guy buyers, we're just against the "omgz banz the assault ak-15 glock rifles! they shoot 98 clips per second! why would anyonee want that! to murder people!!" douches.

    That being said, gun free zones obviously don't work.
     

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