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In 1998, Americans weren’t yet accustomed to frequent headlines about mass shootings. It was two decades before Parkland; 14 years before Sandy Hook; and one year before Columbine. It was the year the country was shocked by a shooting in Springfield, Oregon, when Kristin Kinkel’s 15-year-old brother murdered their parents and opened fire at Thurston High School, killing two students and injuring more than two dozen others.

Reading news coverage of the shooting is a reminder “of how shocking they were at the time,” Jennifer Gonnerman writes in The New Yorker, “and how numb we have become to such acts of violence in the past quarter century.” 

Kinkel, however, is still raw. Over the past 25 years, she’s dealt with the trauma of losing her family and becoming a story, “not a human being,” to the media. She’s close with her brother now, but she’s still reckoning with his crimes. Her experience illuminates a complicated mode of being left behind — as a school shooter’s sister.

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What to Know Today

The financial toll of gun violence can be overwhelming and long-lasting for survivors and people close to them. A new study provides estimates on the societywide economic burdens of fatal and nonfatal shootings: According to researchers, the total cost of firearm-related injuries and deaths in the U.S. for 2020 was $493.2 billion. [American Journal of Preventive Medicine

Gun violence appears to be falling in most of the country so far this year, but in a few places — like Washington, D.C.; Memphis, Tennessee; and Greensboro, North Carolina — firearm homicides are still surging. Why are these cities outliers? [Jeff Asher]

The Supreme Court appears likely to side with the government in U.S. v. Rahimi, the case challenging a decades-old federal policy meant to protect domestic violence victims. But that doesn’t mean the decision would clear up the confusion in lower courts created by the 2022 Bruen ruling, argues appellate lawyer Duncan Hosie, nor that it would change the high court’s conservative majority’s approach to originalism. [The New York Review of Books

Business owners, teenagers, church leaders, and other residents of Oakland, California, are angry about the city’s gun violence crisis, and looking for somewhere — or someone — to blame for the continuing bloodshed. How does the new chief of Oakland’s Department of Violence Prevention, Dr. Holly Joshi, plan to counter the violence? [KFF Health News via CNN/The Oaklandside

Alaska records the third-highest suicide rate in the nation, and the numbers are particularly high in the northwest Arctic. In Kotzebue, where the Police Department has no designated homicide detective or investigator, community members are taking a closer look at unsolved killings and suicides that they suspect weren’t actually suicides at all. [Anchorage Daily News and ProPublica

The lawyer for Jennifer Crumbley — the mother of the shooter who killed four students in the 2021 shooting at Michigan’s Oxford High School, and who is facing trial on involuntary manslaughter charges for purchasing the gun he used in the attack — may face jail time over her handling of sensitive information involving Crumbley’s son. Prosecutors allege that the lawyer violated a protective order over the shooter’s mental health records and released misleading information to “create false headlines.” [Detroit Free Press]

Data Point

$9.3 billion — the economic burden of all nonfatal firearm injuries in the U.S. in 2020. Injuries that required hospitalization accounted for $7.7 billion. [American Journal of Preventive Medicine]