The Virginia Tech Incident: Developing Hindsight to Prevent Future Incidents

The Virginia Tech Incident: Developing Hindsight to Prevent Future Incidents

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“I fear for my life and the lives of others on campus. I do not believe that this student is mentally sound” (Hoeft). Life is a precious thing; one may not realize how important it is until they are faced with a threat on their mortality. More than thirty of Virginia Tech’s students were faced with that mortality on April 16, 2007, when Seung-Hui Cho murdered them with two semiautomatic handguns, and then he killed himself. Many problems lead to this unfortunate event, and many people seem to blame the school. Lynn Daggett, a Professor at the Gonzaga University School of Law, states, “Schools struggle with whether, when, and how to involve the police, both when students appear to present a threat to others, as in these high profile cases, and also when the school suspects a student of criminal behavior” (Daggett). This paper will discuss the Virginia Tech incident in hindsight, and elaborate on the lack of police involvement, sharing of student information, and how can this data keep these events from reoccurring.
In order to understand this paper, one needs to know what the Virginia Tech incident entailed. Seung-Hui Cho was a disturbed student who did not receive enough psychological assistance for his issues. As mentioned before, on April 16, 2007, Seung-Hui Cho was the murder of what The New York Times reported as “the deadliest shooting rampage in American History”(Hauser). Cho murdered thirty-three people; many of the victims were students, who were shot in a dorm or classroom. The New York Times report, by Christine Hauser and Anahad O’Connor, went over the horrendous event; “The killings occurred in two separate attacks on the campus in Blacksburg, Va.” Around 7:15 am the first attack took place, two people were shot and k...


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... Hall, and W. Gerry Gilmer. "Connecting the Dots...: Information
Sharing By Post-Secondary Educational Institutions under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)." Education & the Law 20.4 (2008): 301-316. Academic Search Complete. Web. 13 May 2014.

Hauser, Christine, and Anahad O'Conner. "Virginia Tech Shooting Leaves 33 Dead." The
New York Times. The New York Times Company, 16 Apr. 2007. Web. 9 May 2014.

Hoeft, Mary. "Professors in the Crosshairs." Inside Higher Ed. Inside Higher Ed, 24 Feb.
2011. Web. 26 Mar. 2014.

Martínez, Louis E. "The Police Response to Critical Incidents in Academic Institutions."
Journal of Police Crisis Negotiations 12.1 (2012): 69-77. SocINDEX with Full Text. Web. 26 Mar. 2014.

Roy, Lucinda. "Prologue, Chapter 1, Chapter 2." No Right to Remain Silent: The Tragedy
at Virginia Tech. New York: Harmony, 2009. 1-61. Print.

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