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UD Professor Weighs in on the Mind-set of Navy Yard Shooter
DAYTON -- After police revealed the gunman responsible for killing 12 people at Washington's Navy Yard had a history of violence, a University of Dayton professor speaks about the mental state of a mass murderer.
Although we will never be able to ask Aaron Alexis what made him kill 12 people, he reportedly struggled with anger issues, outbursts and violence long before he walked into the Navy Yard complex.
Alexis, 34, was a current military contractor and a former Navy reservist who was honorably discharged after a "pattern of misconduct."
University of Dayton Professor Art Jipson specializes in extreme violent behavior.
"It wouldn't surprise me at all that there was a specific individual related to his career and discharge where he dealt with this feeling of frustration," Jipson estimated Tuesday.
Jipson says every serial killer or mass murderer has a target and a way to justify killing in their own minds.
"Now he can get satisfaction. Now he can get over on the person who hurt him. It's not real but it wouldn't surprise me if that's what he was thinking at this time," Jipson continued.
But that breaking point is rarely without physical and emotional indicators.
Jipson says anyone who views violence as fun, funny or interesting should be evaluated. As well as anyone who exhibits consistent feelings of frustration and shows drastic changes in behavior.
"We can look for episodes of extreme violence. 0 to 60. They are ready to go to blows and all you did is bump them. Extreme reaction. Unwarranted reaction," Jipson explained.
As fear spread across the Capitol and the country over another killing spree, Jipson reminds us that less than 2 percent of annual homicides are mass shootings.
"We need to be vigilant. Parents, teachers, authority figures and recognize where we think someone has a fixation of violence we need to handle that in an appropriate way and help them before there is a serious problem."
Miami Valley Crime StoppersIf you have information about a crime that has occurred, call Miami Valley Crime Stoppers at 937-222-7867 (STOP) 800-637-5735, 24 hours a day. Callers can remain anonymous.
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