Listen to the 911 calls from the shooting at Chardon High School in Ohio: http://bit.ly/zruwjH
Three teenagers were killed. Two others were injured. Over what? The alleged shooter TJ Lane was in juvenile court Tuesday. According to the prosecutor, Lane picked his victims randomly. He fired 10 shots. All I could think of was one word: Senseless. Senseless. Senseless.
Lane wrote on his Facebook page a rant last December. It ends with the line: “Die all of you.” He reportedly indicated on his Twitter page his intentions in the days before the attack. (His Twitter and FB page have since been taken down). Fellow students thought it was a joke.
Are there warning signs? How can family and friends distinguish when a student is expressing run-of-the-mill teenage angst and when it is something more threatening? Is there a way of preventing these senseless acts?
The American Psychological Association has posted these warnings – signs of potential youth violence: http://bit.ly/ieSgTv
The bottom line is parents should ask questions. Friend your kids on Facebook. Follow them on Twitter. Be involved. Teenagers who see something worrisome on Facebook or Twitter should take it seriously and tell an adult.