According to a recent news article form CNN, a shooting at Winston-Salem State University has left one student dead and another seriously injured. The gunman, who is not believed to be a student at the university, has not been arrested as of this time.
gThe shooting occurred around 1:20 a.m. on Halloween night, and the school was placed in lockdown for the next few hours. All students on campus were told to stay inside and not leave for any reason. There were also many students who had left for the evening to go to Halloween festivities, and they were told not to return to campus until the lockdown was lifted. Authorities say they are still concerned the gunman may still be around campus and have told visitors to stay away at this time.
This is particularly difficult, as this was homecoming weekend for the historically black university, and there were a lot of events and celebrations planned for alumni returning to campus.
Police have released information that the victim who was killed in the school shooting was a 19-year-old sophomore from Charlotte, North Carolina. Police have not, however, released any information on the student who was wounded in the shooting.
Unfortunately, school shootings are nothing new in the United States. We have experienced school shootings in one form or another since the 1800s, but many of these incidents involved the intentional killing of a single victim. However, it was not until the horrific events that took place in Littleton, Colorado at Columbine High School when school shootings really captured national attention. There were fights between groups wanting stronger gun control laws and the National Rifle Association (NRA). While there has been a lot of talk and outrage after each subsequent school shooting, little change has actually occurred on either side of the equation. We saw the Virginia Tech shooting, during which 33 victims were killed and another 25 were injured. Just this month, there was a major school shooting at Northern Arizona University in which 10 people were killed and 9 others were wounded.
While national issues such as gun control law changes might help future victims if enacted and successful, they do not offer much for victims of tragic shootings that have already happened and the families of these victims. This is not only true of school shootings, but any of the public shootings we have seen, such as the ones at movie theatres, shopping malls, and outdoor events.
While there is generally a valid wrongful death lawsuit or personal injury lawsuit, which could be brought against the shooter personally, this is not always a viable option. In many of these cases, the shooter killed himself during the shooting or was shot by the police. Even if the shooter survives or his or her estate is named as defendant, in a Winston-Salem personal injury case, for example, it is not likely this person will have any applicable insurance coverage or enough assets to satisfy a judgment. In some of these cases, it may be possible to sue other parties for negligent security and other related torts, but every case is different, so you would want to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
Contact our Carolina personal injury lawyers at Lee Law Offices today by calling 800-887-1965.
1 killed in shooting at Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina, November 1, 2015, CNN, by Joe Sutton
More Blog Entries:
Regents v. Super. Ct. – University Duty of Care to Students, Oct. 7, 2015, Rock Hill Injury Attorney Blogs