9 Forgotten Facts about the April 20, 1999 Columbine High School Massacre
Jun 12, · The Columbine shooting on April 20, at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, occurred when two teens went on a shooting spree, . Apr 20, · On April 20, , two students opened fire at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, gunning down 12 of their fellow students and a teacher before killing themselves. America endured school shootings before Columbine, but never "one quite like that one," said ABC News contributor and former FBI agent Brad Garrett.
On April 20,two students opened fire at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, gunning down hake of their fellow students and a teacher before killing themselves. The sheer shock of 13 people losing their lives in chaos that unfolded on live TV launched the country into a new era -- and new century -- of school shooting coverage, ahead of Virginia Tech, Sandy Hook, Parkland and countless columbinw.
Fifteen-year-old Columbine freshman Laura Farber was in the cafeteria when a janitor yelled for everyone to get under the tables. She was sitting by the door, so she and her classmates what year did columbine take place out, running through the parking lot to a residential street, where they knocked on strangers' doors for help.
Once Farber was safely inside a home, she colmubine shots across the parking lot. Then-Columbine High School Principal Frank Twke was in his office when his secretary ran in and said there was a report of gunfire. But what do the celebrities eat in the jungle he stepped into the hall, "My worst nightmare became a reality.
What does cfl bulb mean I remember thinking, 'What was it gonna pplace like to have a bullet pierce my body? That's when a group of girls came out of a locker room, walking taek down the hallway. DeAngelis herded them into a gym storage area. He peeked outside and saw a sheriff's officer, so went back for the girls and rushed them out of the building.
But it was the protocol of the time," DeAngelis wrote in his newly-released book. Another what year did columbine take place of protocol concerned the school resource officer, with whom the gunmen exchanged gunfire outside before storming the school, DeAngelis said.
Following protocol, the officer didn't enter the building. But if the officer had followed hear inside, "there's a good chance" the gunmen wouldn't have reached the library, where so many classmates were targeted, DeAngelis said. Instead of immediately confronting the threat and racing into the building, police secured the scene and waited for SWAT teams to arrive, which allowed the plwce to continue to fire inside.
Forty-eight minutes ticked by at Columbine before SWAT entered the building, DeAngelis said, as the officers first had to get their gear at their tame -- leaving DeAngelis and the police at the scene feeling helpless. Now, most police departments have rapid response officers who carry heavier assault weapons and are trained to enter immediately and "follow the firepower," said Garrett.
While gunshots rang out, Columbine teachers were forced to open classroom doors and reach around to lock them, "putting themselves in harm's way," DeAngelis said, as the doors only locked from the outside. Though schools have multiple doors, now they're commonly what year did columbine take place up so students only use certain ones to get into the building, setting up a "choke point" eid "security people columbin control as they come into school," Garrett said.
Drills weren't typical before Columbine, and waht, active shooter scenarios are a common conversation for kids to have in school, whether they live in a rural setting or urban setting, Garrett said.
Some schools teach students coumbine the best hiding places plae the classroom, how to barricade the door and how to throw objects at an intruder as a distraction, he said. Though new measures are in place in schools, mass shootings overall ta,e on the decline, Garrett said. However, there are upsides: due to the new protocols, school shootings are usually shorter, lasting just a few minutes until the gunman is confronted.
And thanks to new security what year did columbine take place -- like surveillance cameras -- overall crime in schools, including theft and sexual assault, has decreased, said Garrett. When Farber, the Columbine freshman, got home the night of the massacre, she hadn't yet processed or learned the full facts of what happened. Farber wanted life to go on "as normal as possible," but "there's just always this underlying feeling of guilt," she said.
DeAngelis, too, wrote in his book, "I had a difficult time looking at people in the eyes because of the guilt. The principal spent his post-Columbine years wading through uncharted waters as he tried to help himself, his staff and his students through the trauma.
Each student dealt with the tragedy in a different way, he said. DeAngelis soon realized Columbine could no longer serve Chinese food because that was served the day of the shooting. Some students wouldn't participate in fire drills. The school couldn't show war movies, he said, and the administration banned camouflage clothing because first responders wore it that day.
The first few years after the shooting, DeAngelis said his weight dropped and he went to the emergency room several times, mistaking anxiety for a heart whay. Despite the overwhelming trauma, DeAngelis noticed an immense stigma surrounding mental health treatment, and he said he was discouraged from disclosing he was seeing what year did columbine take place therapist in case he'd be "deemed unfit for duty.
DeAngelis, who columbne 18 years as principal, retired in -- after he felt he had done his duty to heal dix community. One thing that hasn't changed is that school shootings are still happening, with one after another unfolding in the 20 years since Columbine. At what year did columbine take place people what is angle closure glaucoma been killed in school shootings since Learn how to crochet free, according to The Washington Post school shootings are not tallied by the federal government, The Post notes.
Since Columbine, there have been 11 school shootings that were considered mass shootings -- where four or more victims were killed. The massacre at Virginia Tech in is the deadliest school shooting in U. Some captured the nation's attention: the horror of the mass murder of 20 young children and dd educators in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut; the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where 17 were gunned down, allegedly by a former classmate, sparking a student-led revolt for gun reform across the country.
Weeks before the Parkland massacre, two teenagers were killed and wuat a dozen people were ddid in a shooting at Marshall County High School in Benton, Kentucky. A year-old girl columbie the gunman's target -- tzke killed. The second victim survived.
Sometimes after a high-profile mass shooting, states will tighten up gun laws, requiring background checks, restricting the age for buying guns, reducing the sale of hear weapons or banning the sale of high capacity magazines, said Garrett. But in other cases, states will loosen laws after mass shootings wat make it easier to buy guns and how to cure acute hepatitis b permits.
States have had the most control over gun laws, Garrett said, with very little movement at the federal level. Garrett considers one of the most significant federal changes in recent decades to be the assault weapons ban signed placw President Bill Clinton inwhich expired in and was not renewed by Congress. But these state-level restrictions haven't had a big impact on mass shootings, Garrett said, "because mass shootings are what year did columbine take place impulsive.
These [gunmen] will plan weeks, months, sometimes years, in advance as they build up. So if you restrict the way yera buy weapons, they can just wait or go to another columbihe to buy an assault weapon. Meanwhile, just as a new school shooting reignites the gun control debate, it also introduces a new, shocked community to Columbine's unfortunate club, and as the leaders of the pack, Columbine survivors feel a duty to pay it forward.
Farber is now a filmmaker and released a documentary this month in which she followed several of her fellow survivors as they returned to the Columbine room where they were when gunfire erupted.
They reflect on how surviving transformed them from carefree teenagers to terrified and bitter young adults. But in the last 20 years, they've also found meaningful careers, life partners and ways to cope. Farber hopes the film will reach trauma survivors beyond Columbine and help them move past their own experiences. Other Columbine survivors founded The Rebels Project, a non-profit that connects mass shootings survivors with each other to help find a support system.
Parkland students visited Colorado last year to meet Columbine survivors, DeAngelis said, and the elders gave the teenagers guidance on how to maneuver their years ahead. But when it comes to preventing these future tragedies, DeAngelis hopes people know "there are kids that need help in schools.
The key, he said, is those pieces working together as one: Prior to Columbine, he said, law enforcement, tzke health professionals and school administrators worked separately. Shows Good Morning America. World News Tonight. This Week. The View. What Would You Do? Sections U. Virtual Reality. We'll notify you here with news about. Turn on desktop notifications for breaking stories about interest? MORE: Columbine cid reflects on 'worst nightmare' 19 years after shooting.
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Apr 18, · The nation was shocked on April 20, , when 12 students and one teacher were killed in a mass shooting at Columbine High School outside of Denver, Colorado.
Ten students were killed in the school library, where the pair subsequently committed suicide. Twenty-one additional people were injured by gunshots, and gunfire was also exchanged with the police. Another three people were injured trying to escape the carnage. At the time, it was the deadliest school shooting in U. In addition to the shootings, the attack involved several homemade bombs. Two of these were placed in the cafeteria, powerful enough to kill or seriously injure all people within the area, although they failed to detonate.
Their cars in the parking lots were made into bombs which also failed to detonate, and at another location away from the school, two bombs were set up as diversions, only one of which partially detonated. The motive remains unclear; but Harris and Klebold planned the massacre for around a year, and hoped the massacre would cause the most deaths in U.
The police were slow to enter the school and were heavily criticized for not intervening during the shooting. The incident resulted in the introduction of the Immediate Action Rapid Deployment tactic, which is used in active shooter situations. Columbine also resulted in an increased emphasis on school security with zero tolerance policies. Debates and moral panic were sparked over guns and gun control laws , high school cliques, subcultures e.
Many impromptu memorials were created after the massacre, including victims Rachel Scott 's car and John Tomlin's truck. Fifteen crosses for the victims and shooters were also erected on top of a hill in Clement Park. The crosses for Harris and Klebold were removed later following controversy. The Columbine Memorial began planning as a permanent memorial in June and opened to the public on September 21, It included details about Harris sneaking out of the house to cause mischief and vandalism, such as lighting fireworks , with his friend Dylan Klebold and others.
Harris worked at a fireworks stand, and had received several fireworks as a result. Now our only problem is to find the place that will be ' ground zero '. Harris's site attracted few visitors and caused no concern until August Harris ended a blog post detailing murderous fantasies with "All I want to do is kill and injure as many of you as I can, especially a few people. Like Brooks Brown"; a classmate of his. When investigator Michael Guerra accessed the website, he discovered numerous violent threats directed against the students and teachers of CHS.
Guerra wrote a draft affidavit , requesting a search warrant of the Harris household. The affidavit also mentioned the discovery of an exploded pipe bomb, and a suspicion of Harris being involved in the unsolved case.
The affidavit was never submitted to a judge and, therefore, went ignored. On January 30, , Harris and Klebold were arrested for breaking into a van parked near Littleton and stealing tools and computer equipment. The judge sentenced them to a juvenile diversion program. Nearly a year before the massacre, Klebold wrote a message in Harris's yearbook: "killing enemies, blowing up stuff, killing cops!! My wrath for January's incident will be godlike.
Not to mention our revenge in the commons. Harris and Klebold kept journals, which were released to the public in In the journals, the pair would eventually document their arsenal and plan of attack. Shortly after the court hearing for the van break-in, Harris reverted his website back to just posting user-created levels of Doom. He began to write his thoughts down in a journal instead.
It shows a long period of methodical preparation for the massacre. Harris also typed out on his computer a plan for the attack, which includes possibly escaping to a foreign country afterwards, or hijacking an aircraft at Denver International Airport and crashing it into New York City.
Klebold had already been writing down his thoughts since March As early as November , Klebold mentioned going on a killing spree. Harris and Klebold also used their schoolwork to foreshadow the massacre.
In December , Harris wrote a paper on school shootings titled "Guns in School",   and a poem from the perspective of a bullet. On October 2, , Harris and Klebold were suspended for hacking into Columbine High School's computer system to get student locker combinations. Harris and Klebold were both enrolled in video production classes and kept five video tapes that were recorded with school video equipment. The remaining three tapes detail their plans and reasons for the massacre, including the ways they hid their weapons and deceived their parents.
Thirty minutes before the attack, they made a final video saying goodbye and apologizing to their friends and families. In December , before anybody else had seen them, Time magazine published an article on these tapes.
As a result, select victim families and journalists were allowed to see them, and they were then kept from the public indefinitely for fear of inspiring future massacres.
The tapes have since been destroyed. The pair claimed they were going to make copies of the tapes to send to news stations, but never did so. When an economics class had Harris make an ad for a business, he and Klebold made a video called Hitmen for Hire on December 8, , which was released in February It depicts them as part of the Trench Coat Mafia , a clique in the school who wore black trench coats,  extorting money for protecting preps from bullies.
On October 21, , a video was released showing the pair doing target practice on March 6, , in nearby foothills known as Rampart Range, with the weapons they would use in the massacre. Before the massacre, Harris left a micro cassette labeled "Nixon" on the kitchen table. On it Harris said "It is less than nine hours now," placing the recording at some time around am.
He went on to say "People will die because of me" and "It will be a day that will be remembered forever. In the months prior to the attacks, Harris and Klebold acquired two 9 mm firearms and two gauge shotguns.
Harris's shotgun was sawed-off to around 26 inches 0. On November 22, , their friend Robyn Anderson purchased the carbine rifle and the two shotguns for the pair at the Tanner Gun Show , as they were too young to legally purchase the guns themselves. After the attack, she told investigators that she had believed the pair wanted the items for target shooting, and that she had no prior knowledge of their plans.
Harris and Klebold both held part-time jobs at a local Blackjack Pizza. After the massacre, Manes and Duran were both prosecuted. Manes and Duran were sentenced to a total of six years and four-and-a-half years in prison, respectively.
In addition to the firearms, the complex and highly planned attack involved several improvised explosive devices. Using instructions obtained via the Internet and the Anarchist Cookbook , Harris and Klebold constructed a total of 99 bombs. These included pipe bombs, carbon dioxide cartridges filled with gunpowder called "crickets"  , Molotov cocktails , propane tanks converted to bombs , car bombs, and diversionary bombs.
For ignition, they used kitchen matches and model rocket igniters as well as timing devices built from clocks and batteries for the propane, car, and diversion bombs.
They had 45 crickets, 8 of which detonated, and 9 Molotov cocktails, 2 of which functioned. Harris also attempted to make napalm , and envisioned a kind of backpack and flamethrower.
They both attempted to get another friend and coworker Chris Morris, who was a part of the Trench Coat Mafia, to keep the napalm at his house, but he refused. Harris also tried to recruit him to be a third shooter, but would play it off as a joke when rebuked. Harris's website contained directions on making pipe bombs, including use of shrapnel. A total of 35 were used during the massacre, 14 of which detonated. Klebold scared his coworkers by once bringing a pipe bomb into work.
After the massacre, two pipe bombs had been left in Klebold's bedroom, one named "Vengeance" and another " Atlanta ", presumably after the Olympic Park bombing.
They had 8 propane tanks used for bombs. The weekend before the shootings, Harris and Klebold bought two propane tanks and other supplies from a hardware store for a few hundred dollars. They bought six propane tanks on the morning of the attack. Each car bomb was made from pipe bombs and two pound propane tanks, with gas cans and bottles set throughout. Harris and Klebold each carried two knives, which were never used during the massacre. Harris had one in a sheath taped to his ankle.
Klebold had one that was a cobra knife; a curved blade and several spikes on its handle. According to their journals and video tapes, it is believed by investigators that the pair intended to detonate their propane bombs in the cafeteria at the busiest lunch hour, killing hundreds of students.
After this, they would shoot survivors. They would also be able to stab or toss bombs. Eventually, bombs set in their cars in the parking lot would also detonate, killing more students as well as possibly any police officers, paramedics, firemen, or reporters who had come to the school. Several official sources claim they planned to shoot the fleeing survivors from the parking lot, but moved to the staircase on the hill at the west side of the school when the bombs failed.
A total of rounds of ammunition were fired by the perpetrators during the massacre. Firing nearly twice as much as Klebold, Harris fired his carbine rifle a total of 96 times, and discharged his shotgun 25 times. Klebold fired the TEC-9 handgun 55 times, and 12 rounds from his double-barreled shotgun. Law enforcement officers fired rounds during exchanges of gunfire with the shooters.
On Tuesday morning, April 20, , Harris and Klebold placed two duffel bags in the cafeteria. Each bag contained propane bombs, which were set to detonate at a. No witness recalled seeing the duffel bags being added to the or so backpacks that were already in the cafeteria. Jefferson County Sheriff's Deputy Neil Gardner was assigned to the high school as a full-time school resource officer. Gardner usually ate lunch with students in the cafeteria, but on April 20 he was eating lunch in his patrol car at the northwest corner of the campus, watching students in the Smokers' Pit in Clement Park, a meadow adjacent to the school.
Two backpacks filled with pipe bombs, aerosol canisters, and small propane bombs were also placed in a field about 3 miles 4. Only the pipe bombs and one of the aerosol canisters detonated, causing a small fire, which was quickly extinguished by the fire department.
It went off when moved. Bomb technicians immediately examined the bombs and relayed to police at the school the possibility of devices with motion activators.