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Old March 14, 2012, 03:20 PM   #1
Glenn E. Meyer
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Virginia Tech found negligent

http://chronicle.com/blogs/ticker/ju...&utm_medium=en

I don't know if you will be able to access it. Basically the jury found for some parents who wouldn't accept the settlement. The basis of the finding was that the school didn't respond promptly and correctly to the initial shooting which they viewed as a domestic.

I'd like to read more and see if they considered the lack of response to the reports of Cho's behavior. The chair of his department has written how the school ignored her and other reports of his behavior and afterwards tried to shut up the folks who knew this.

One horrific thing I heard at a conference was that in part the after tragedy ceremonies where you honor the victims is thought to restrain the lawsuits. How can you sue us after we had that nice memorial in the stadium for your kid?

It is also thought that the ceremonies supply vicarious reinforcement for the fantasies of the next shooter. It's been found they study such as they prepare their attack.
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Old March 14, 2012, 07:02 PM   #2
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So the university was liable in not responding fast enough and in the correct manner to a threat where they misread the situation of what they thought was domestic murders that turned out to be the first stage of a greater attack?

So if they had notified students of the first shooting situation immediately, they would not have been liable for what happened later in the classrooms?

$100K each for two of the families.
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Old March 14, 2012, 07:15 PM   #3
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Yet another reason to ban campus carry...

A lot of colleges implemented new procedures after that regarding communicating current threats to their students.

Just had a shooting at the HS I went to a week or so ago, it can happen anywhere, the HS costs $17,000 a year. This was a teacher that got fired, from what I heard he put an AK in a guitar case and went into the principals office and fired multiple rounds into the principal then committed suicide. I remember the victim, wasn't the principal when I went there.


PS I hate that I can't carry at school
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Old March 14, 2012, 08:24 PM   #4
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I am not sure that the shooting at Episcopal High School would have changed at all if carry was allowed or if there had been immediate notification of the students and faculty after the shooting. Obviously, the students would not be carrying and even if legal, the majority of the faculty would not be carrying either.
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Old March 14, 2012, 08:36 PM   #5
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Sure at a high school I see no sense in allowing carry other than perhaps a security guard which I don't recall us having any back then.
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Old March 15, 2012, 09:57 AM   #6
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DNS - if they had initiated a lockdown for a bit, it might have disrupted Cho's plan. No one can predict that. It makes sense to the jury, I suppose.

The actual response to his second attack was very fast but even the fast responders don't save the first wave of people killed. Only someone armed and in the incident can do that (assuming they aren't killed first).

Thus, the argument for carry (and training for those who think they will just 'take them out' in a critical incident).

I actually think the liability should be for not dealing with the warning signs. Been there on this and schools are totally scared of liability for dealing with such.
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Old March 15, 2012, 10:31 AM   #7
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Nice summary:

http://chronicle.com/article/Verdict...&utm_medium=en

Note that VT still refuses to admit a mistake.

Another point is that folks want laws to issue a warning within 30 minutes.

That's a joke as the mass killing is done very quickly. I read that it takes an average of 11 phone calls before some administrator can take the school to Defcon 1.

Let's be real - for schools or other institutions, it is about institutional liability after the fact. The quickest preventive measures (carry) is not contemplated as a solution. Many campus forces and local PDs train for a quick active response now but that doesn't help you if you are the initiating point of attack.

PS - gun bans on campus don't stop zombie like knife attacks.

http://www.dispatch.com/content/stor...-shooting.html
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Old March 15, 2012, 01:39 PM   #8
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" if they had initiated a lockdown for a bit, it might have disrupted Cho's plan."

Might have ended up locking his murderous butt in a building with even more targets and had more deaths and more parents suing. Norris Hall isn't even close to being one the larger buildings on Tech's 2600-acre main campus.

Heck, I lived in West AJ dorm for a year. It's a long dern walk across the campus and drill field to Norris.

Woulda, coulda, shoulda.

I'm not angry at the parents who sued. Or at the cops who thought the first two murders in the AJ dorm were domestic-related, etc. Only the killer.

John
Class of 1972.
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Old March 15, 2012, 01:51 PM   #9
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For the curious. AJ is #32 / grid L7 and Norris is #132 / grid L4.

http://www.vt.edu/where_we_are/maps/...ap-highres.pdf

To give you a sense of scale, the drill field is approximately 600 feet wide and 1500 feet long and the road around it is about 3/4ths of a mile.

If they had forced everyone inside the nearest building and then locked the buildings, where would he have been?
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Old March 15, 2012, 02:15 PM   #10
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Initially, they did lockdown the dorm where the first attack occurred, but Cho was gone. They could have locked down the campus and maybe that would have delayed him a bit, but he was gone from it to mail his video at that time. So he might have had to wait a little while for the lockdown to be called off and then resume his attack.
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Old March 15, 2012, 02:35 PM   #11
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Let's be real - for schools or other institutions, it is about institutional liability after the fact.
It is about some lawyer convincing a "selected" group of folks that a faceless monolith with deep pockets should pay so they can get their third of the money. It is the same mentality when juries awarded ridiculous amounts against insurance companies or McDonald's (remember hot coffee?).

Those same parents will gripe when tuition goes up to cover the cost, the same way they did when their insurances went up. The school is not negligible, a good lawyer just made it look to be the bad guy in an emotion-packed scenario
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Old March 15, 2012, 02:45 PM   #12
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I feel that the university could have done more to warn people. Granted no one could have predicted what happened, but I think they should have put out the warning a lot sooner. Hindsight is worth nothing in a case like this, but I can't help but think locking campus down could have changed the outcome. The fact that he was able to walk across the drillfield without being stopped is what baffles me.

Having attended 2 colleges that have had on campus shootings (while I attended) makes me really despise the fact that I cannot have my CCW on campus. The debate hits the usual anti-gun ignorance wave and is dismissed as a viable solution.

Ben-VT Class of 2012
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Old March 15, 2012, 03:19 PM   #13
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Lockdowns/alerts won't save anybody, even if they are given in a timely manner.


The only thing that will protect anybody from a bad man with a gun is someone with another gun. Whether that gun is on the scene or has to get there strapped to a LEO is apparently of concern only to the people on scene waiting for a bullet.

The powers that be (Administrations, Insurance Companies, Lawyers, many in the LE community), for whatever reason, seem to be saying that "You are not allowed to help yourself, because you may not do it exactly right." .... it seems to me that they are letting pursuit of perfection prevent adequate measures in a timely fashion......
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Old March 15, 2012, 03:23 PM   #14
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Hindsight is worth nothing in a case like this
Not so: Lawyers make a living using hindsight to persecute people who did the best they could under the circumstances they were in. The Lawyers on both sides of this got paid very well, I am sure......
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Old March 15, 2012, 04:06 PM   #15
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Just to clarify, I meant my hindsight
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Old March 15, 2012, 05:10 PM   #16
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And there is a cap in Virginia for damages in cases like this that is well below the amount awarded.

The administration failed to notify.

Sitting in their lefty ivory tower they likely could probably not even contemplate what was happening.

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Old March 15, 2012, 06:52 PM   #17
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I feel that the university could have done more to warn people.
How? On the application? "Dear prospective student, please be aware we have had maniacs kill other students in a rapid manner where no response was fast enough. Please consider that when applying to our University. This relieves us of any legal liabilities should the 1,000,000 to 1 odds happen to you during your stay"

Does that work for you?
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Old March 15, 2012, 07:08 PM   #18
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How? On the application? "Dear prospective student, please be aware we have had maniacs kill other students in a rapid manner where no response was fast enough. Please consider that when applying to our University. This relieves us of any legal liabilities should the 1,000,000 to 1 odds happen to you during your stay"

Does that work for you?
No, by alerting everyone on campus that a shooting had taken place like they did when a VT police officer was shot on campus in December.

Way to seriously misread and generalize what I said.

Last edited by Frank Ettin; March 15, 2012 at 11:32 PM. Reason: Keep it civil
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Old March 15, 2012, 07:49 PM   #19
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Wrong, no misreading - is it the role of government to take all responsibility for everything. You sound like you also believe that the police really are there to protect you......

How are they supposed to alert everyone? Not everyone has their phone on while in class or the library or shower.......

Maybe you and others willing to blame the University should be blaming the criminal and finding out more ways to prevent folks like him from carrying out his deed or even WHY he did it

Last edited by Frank Ettin; March 15, 2012 at 11:35 PM. Reason: Keep it civil
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Old March 15, 2012, 08:29 PM   #20
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oneounce,
You're making a lot of assumptions about me and my views that are unfounded.

I expressed my views on preventing further occurrences of this nature in my original post, and it had absolutely nothing to do with the government taking responsibility or the police protecting me. I was advocating for the right of students and faculty who are authorized to carry concealed to do so on campus.

As far as blaming the university, I simply stated that I feel, in my own personal opinion, that the school could have handled the situation differently and that it may have altered the outcome for the better. I have a right to that opinion just as you have a right to disagree with it.

You are right, not everyone does have their phone on them all of the time. However, our alert system is composed of many other components that help to warn people of impending or current crises (warning sirens, cell phone texts, radio, email, electronic signs in the classrooms). I realize most of this was implemented after the tragedy, but it showed its effectiveness during the events of last December.

I still feel that allowing lawful citizens to carry on campus is the best option for deterring another attack.

I apologize if you felt insulted by my calling you a troll, but your extremely sarcastic response to my post rubbed me the wrong way.

I hope we can continue this thread in a more mature and less personal manner.
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Old March 15, 2012, 08:38 PM   #21
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maybe using a basic tornado type alarm siren would be better - everyone would hear it and know to take preventative measures

still to blame the University for something that has odds greater than winning the lottery is , IMO, ludicrous

life has dangerous situations, even crossing the street.....I would venture that rape and other drinking-related crimes are a lot more prevalent than a shooting and those can have just as debilitating and life-long damage
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Old March 15, 2012, 08:45 PM   #22
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I still feel that allowing lawful citizens to carry on campus is the best option for deterring another attack.
I have never been against that and never saw that as an option to this situation - I agree, the FASTEST response would be for instructors to be armed, but since most are very anti-gun liberals in most cases, that isn't going to happen
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Old March 15, 2012, 08:47 PM   #23
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still to blame the University for something that has odds greater than winning the lottery is , IMO, ludicrous
The civil suit wasn't blaming the University for the shooting. It was claiming that the University botched in their response to the shooting. Regardless of my feelings about the validity of the case, I think it's an important distinction.
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Old March 15, 2012, 08:49 PM   #24
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maybe using a basic tornado type alarm siren would be better - everyone would hear it and know to take preventative measures
That is part of our crisis alert system. They test it out a few times a year and it is very loud and noticeable.
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Old March 16, 2012, 09:20 AM   #25
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I have never been against that and never saw that as an option to this situation - I agree, the FASTEST response would be for instructors to be armed, but since most are very anti-gun liberals in most cases, that isn't going to happen
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Sadly, this is true. But for your info - when our faculty Senate wrote a letter against the campus carry bill to the state legislature - one faculty member contacted the Senate to object. Guess who and he wasn't the classic TX conservative gun guy. Those guys didn't say squat.

And who was the prof - who on the faculty internal listserv, spoke up for RKBA? Not the hard core conservatives, strangely quiet.
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