A new study finds that 20 to 30 percent of mass killings and school shootings inspire similar violent attacks for an average of 13 days after the initial tragedy, NBC News reported. On average, mass shootings occur about once every two weeks in the United States and school shootings happen about once a month, according to researchers at Arizona State University and Northeastern Illinois University. The study titled “Contagion in Mass Killings and School Shootings, published Thursday in the journal PLOS ONE, also found mass shootings were significantly higher in states with a high rate of gun ownership. Previous research has found that media reports of suicides and homicides can be contagious among at-risk individuals, “subsequently increase the incidence of similar events.” Researchers believe that national media coverage of a mass shooting might can potentially do the same thing, but at a larger scale," Towers said.
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Investigators announced Thursday that weather caused a destructive blaze at a predominantly black church in South Carolina. The State Law Enforcement Division said in a statement that investigators found no evidence of criminal intent in the fire at Mount Zion African Methodist Episcopal Church in Greeleyville, about 50 miles north of the "Mother Emanuel" church in Charleston where nine people were killed June 17. SLED says its conclusion was based on an examination of the scene, analysis of debris, witness statements and a lightning strike report. "All of the factors led us to the conclusion that the cause of this fire was natural," SLED spokesman Thom Berry said.
Although Fourth of July security advisories are fairly common, this year's bulletin sent to local law enforcement in May carries weight because ISIS has asked its supporters to carry out attacks around the world, NBC News reported. Authorities have said they are unaware of any specific or credible threat inside the country. But there is mounting evidence that many of those ISIS supporters, including so-called lone wolves who have been inspired if not explicitly backed by the group, are heeding those calls. In the New York region alone, authorities have arrested five people on terror-related charges in the past month. "This year is different from other years because of the real links that come across between ISIS' fighters on the ground connecting with radicalized individuals or self-radicalized individuals online in the homeland," said Laith Alkhouri, a co-founder of security consulting firm Flashpoint Intelligence, an NBC News partner.
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A Miami-Dade judge and one of her old middle school classmates had an emotional reunion in court Thursday after he was arrested following an alleged burglary and police pursuit.
"Oh my goodness, oh my goodness," Arthur Booth cried after Judge Mindy Glazer recognized him from their days at Nautilus Middle School and asked if he had gone there.
Booth, 49, was arrested Monday by Hialeah Police on several charges including burglary, grand theft, fleeing, and resisting arrest.
"I'm sorry to see you there, I always wondered what happened to you sir," Glazer said, as Booth continued crying. "This was the nicest kid in middle school, he was the best kid in middle school."
Tennessee Department of Correction
Albuquerque police on Thursday identified the robber who was shot dead by a former CNN reporter Tuesday as a parole absconder from Tennessee. Tomorio Walton, 27, was killed by former CNN reporter Chuck de Caro in a "shootout" during an alleged attempted robbery at a Motel 6 just before midnight Tuesday, police and de Caro's wife, former CNN and Headline News anchor Lynne Russell, said. Police said de Caro killed the alleged gunman after he accosted Russell in the motel parking lot and then forced his way inside their room, ensuing a shootout. The husband and wife have licenses to carry concealed weapons, Russell said.
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There will no doubt be plenty of beer and fireworks this Fourth of July.
Although we celebrate Independence Day on July 4 every year, that may not be the correct date of America's independence from Britain. In fact, John Adams wrote a letter to his wife Abigail hailing the July 2 as the day people would celebrate America for generations to come.
That's because on July 2, 1776, the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution for independence. However, America celebrates July 4 because that was the day the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence.
Here's a look at other things to know this July 4.
NASCAR's national series tracks announced Thursday that they are asking fans to refrain from displaying the Confederate flag at races following the deadly attack at a South Carolina church two weeks ago.
NBC Bay Area
A family photo posted on Facebook helped a Northern California mother and son reunite after more than a decade apart. Hope Holland said her son, Jonathan Holland, was kidnapped by his father 15 years earlier at the age of three. After years of working with investigators and child services, it was a Facebook search and familiar picture that brought a family together again.
A Hollywood Hills homeowner is fighting back and calling accusations from neighbors "lies" after they claimed to see people openly drinking and having sex on a "campsite" being rented out on her property. But people living in the well-heeled locale are unhappy at the way they claim renters are behaving during their stays — smoking, having sex and drinking — within view of the surrounding mansions.
"People buck naked, people doing sex out in open. Drinking," resident and father Sanjeeb Kumar told NBC4. "Our own backyard, it's scary. Scared to come out."
But a woman who identified herself as the homeowner, an actress named Dita de Leon, told NBC4 on Thursday those accusations are lies and that her security cameras "never captured anything like that."
The fire at a partially derailed train carrying toxic chemicals in Tennessee was extinguished Thursday, but an evacuation order remained for 5,000 people near the site of the crash outside of Knoxville, officials said. A total of 52 people sought treatment at a hospital and 25 patients were admitted after a train car carrying 24,000 gallons of acrylonitrile — which authorities described as a "highly flammable and toxic gas" — went off the tracks in Maryville around at early Thursday, train operator CSX said. The train was headed from Cincinnati to Waycross, Georgia, and is made up of a total of 45 loaded cars and 12 empty ones. By late Thursday, 35 train cars were removed, while 21 remained on the site until the track is repaired.
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Donald Trump's incendiary comments about Mexican immigrants may have given him a popularity boost in the Republican primary polls, but the financial fallout — especially after Univision, NBC Universal and Macy's cut ties — will likely severely damage his business brand, experts told NBC News. One industry insider, who asked to remain anonymous, told NBC News that Trump's comments were "the equivalent of professional suicide." And even though Trump has largely profited from being the kind of public figure who people love to hate, his comments have likely taken him too far. "It's the idiocy of his statements and how he's handled it," said Lenny Stern, former political consultant and partner at agency SS+K. "For businesses and brands, it's one thing to be associated with a divisive and disrespectful force that you don't as a company believe in, but when you combine that with moronic behavior it's a double whammy."
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A Washington woman died from measles in the spring — the first measles death in the U.S. since 2003 and the first in the state since 1990, health officials said Thursday. The woman, who was not identified, lacked some of the measles' common symptoms, such as a rash, so the virus was not discovered until an autopsy, Washington State Department of Health spokesman Donn Moyer said. The autopsy concluded the cause of death was pneumonia due to measles. This is the 11th case of measles in Washington — and the sixth in Clallam County — this year, Moyer said.
A Chicago man strangled his live-in girlfriend and then confessed to killing her on Facebook, Cook County prosecutors said Thursday.
James E. Thomas went into his victim’s Facebook account and wrote, “My girlfriend was part of the mob. She came to kill me, so I killed her,” Assistant State’s Attorney Akash Vyas said.