Good morning, Bulletin readers. Today’s briefing includes a followup to last week’s solutions reporting by The Trace’s Elizabeth Van Brocklin, who asked officials in 15 cities why they haven’t embraced a lifesaving technique for transporting gunshot victims to the hospital. Plus, news of the latest gun rampage, this one in a part of Chicago hard-hit by everyday gun violence.
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WHAT TO KNOW TODAY
A police officer and two others were killed by a shooter at a Chicago hospital. A gunman opened fire on his former fiancée, an emergency room doctor, in the parking lot of Mercy Hospital on the city’s South Side on Monday afternoon, then ran into the hospital and killed a police officer and a pharmaceutical assistant. The gunman died of gunshot wounds at the scene. Police did not say whether they were self-inflicted.
NEW from THE TRACE: “Scoop and run” can save lives. So why aren’t more police departments trying it? Elizabeth Van Brocklin follows up her report on a lifesaving practice employed by Philadelphia cops — taking gunshot victims straight to a trauma center rather than waiting for an ambulance — by documenting other police departments’ stated reasons for not using it more often themselves. Read the full story here.
An obscure company that sells online certifications for Virginia gun permits spent $2 million on Facebook ads during the midterms. Concealed Online, a for-profit company based in California, spent slightly less than ExxonMobil and more than Planned Parenthood on Facebook ads between May and November, Wired reports. The company’s goal wasn’t to influence policy, but to drum up sales for its online course to obtain a concealed gun permit in Virginia, which is available to nonresidents. The ads did not include a fine-print warning that Virginia’s permit isn’t recognized in all 50 states, prompting the Better Business Bureau to open an investigation.
More than three dozen white supremacists in Florida were arrested in a federal sting that netted 110 illegal guns, a rocket launcher, and pipe bombs. Last Thursday, 39 suspected members of white supremacist gangs in the Tampa area were arrested following a three-year federal investigation. A total of 27 of them were charged with illegal gun possession.
Florida’s concealedcarry permits will be overseen by a Democrat who bucked the NRA. Nikki Fried defeated her Republican opponent, Matt Caldwell, by a margin of .08 percent to become the next commissioner of Florida’s Department of Agriculture, the agency responsible for processing concealedcarry applications in the state. The office came under scrutiny earlier this year because of problems with its vetting process. She replaces Republican Adam Putnam, who last year called himself “a proud NRA sellout.”
A report faults the Orlando Fire Department for its Pulse response. An independent review by the National Police Foundation found that the Fire Department’s response during the 2016 massacre was delayed until top brass arrived, which didn’t happen until after the gunman was killed. The authors also found that a policy change requiring EMS to don bulletproof vests and run into a crime scene to treat people during an active shooting was not readied in time for the nightclub rampage.
The majority of mass shooters have a history of serious mental health disorders. People who insist that the mentally ill are unfairly blamed for mass shootings and those who assert that they are a danger to society are both wrong, Kaiser Health News reports. Grant Duwe, a researcher in the Minnesota Department of Corrections, says about 60 percent of mass shooters have a history of serious mental disorders and two-thirds had never been seen by a mental health professional — and the one-third who did get help went ahead with their rampage. “Getting mental health care is not the panacea people make it out to be,” Duwe said.
A middle school teacher in New York State unintentionally killed his wife as he cleaned his handgun. Police said Eric Rosenbrock, 35, was “performing maintenance” on his legally owned handgun when it fired, striking Ashley Rosenbrock, 34. The two were high school sweethearts who lost one of their four children to sepsis five years ago. No word on charges.
A 2-year-old Georgia boy found a gun under his father’s pillow and fatally shot himself with it. The toddler had climbed into bed while the man was taking an afternoon nap on Thursday. The boy died at a hospital. No charges have been filed.
ONE LAST THING
Most mass shootings leave the front page after about a week. In the two decades since Columbine, articles about major gun rampages appeared on the front page of The New York Times for an average of about six days following the incidents, The Atlantic calculated. The duration was affected more by what else was competing for news coverage than the severity of the attack — the Thousand Oaks shooting on November 7 only spent one day on A1 before catastrophic fires near the site of the shooting pushed it off the front page. But one thing has changed about how the national media covers mass shootings, a Times veteran says: Subsequent reporting has focused less on the gunman and more on the victims and on gun reform.