Mass/School shooting averted in Oregon

24-year-old Kristopher Clay was a custodian at South Medford High School in Medford, Oregon. Last month, Clay turned himself into police, stating that he had homicidal thoughts. He was admitted to the behavioral health ward at the local hospital.

While Clay was hospitalized, police searched three different locations associated with Clay. Police say that they found firearms, ammunition, tactical gear, and the prerequisite manifesto. The high school was said to be one of his targets, but nobody was believed to be specifically targeted in Clay’s planned attack.

This past Wednesday, Clay was transferred from the hospital to police custody where he was arrested and charged with attempted murder, first-degree attempted assault, attempted unlawful use of a weapon, tampering with evidence, and felony disorderly conduct. He is being held on $2 million bond.

Only by the grace of God was a massive tragedy avoided. Clay allegedly spoke about his plans to other people who, of course, didn’t take him seriously. The background check for his employment at the school didn’t bring up any red flags. I have to wonder if he got the job at the school because he saw it as a target, or did he pick it as a target after he started working there?

Clay was said to have picked a specific date for the attack. Again, I’d be curious to know what the date was because I think knowing the date would give us a good insight into his motive. Many copycat shooters often plan their attacks on the dates that more infamous shootings took place. I probably don’t have to tell you the one that immediately comes to mind for me.

The school wasn’t Clay’s only target, either. Although, to my knowledge, the other targets have not been made public.

Tragically, Oregon is no stranger to school shootings. The most recent one was the 2015 shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg that left nine dead. In 2006, there was a shooting at Roseburg High School that left the lone 16-year-old victim with serious injuries that gravely affected his quality of life. And most infamously was the 1998 shooting at Thurston High School. You may not recognize the name of the school, but you’ll recognize the name of the shooter, Kip Kinkel. Kinkel shot and killed both his parents at home before killing two students at the school. Kinkel was sentenced to over 100 years in prison.

But getting back to Clay, even though he was allegedly in possession of firearms, he was prohibited from owning any guns since 2019. The court had barred him from owning any guns due to a mental health issue. But when has that ever stopped anyone from getting their hands on some guns. Clay is believed to have purchased guns from friends and family, while also obtaining gun parts online. No doubt to assemble a ghost gun or several. Anybody who sold him a gun or the parts to a gun should also face prosecution, but history has taught me that rarely pans out.

While I doubt I’m the first person to ever say it, I still contend that guns have more rights in this country than its citizens do.

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