NEW YORK — What constitutes a mass shooting? Many experts consider any event where three or more people are killed by gunfire to be a mass shooting.
On Oct. 1 this year, when eight students and an assistant professor were fatally shot by a disturbed student at Umpqua Community College in Oregon, the Washington Post noted 274 days had passed in the year, up until that point — and already — there had been 294 mass shootings in the United States.
According to a Reddit community tracking mass shootings in the United States, the killings Wednesday constitute the 352nd mass shooting in 2015.
Just last week, the day after Thanksgiving, 57-year-old Robert Louis Dear killed a police officer and two civilians at the Planned Parenthood center in Colorado Springs, Colorado — during a six hour standoff.
He then turned himself in.
The Colorado shooting came exactly two weeks after synchronized terror attacks in Paris stunned the global community, leaving 130 dead at a concert hall, a soccer stadium, and two Parisian cafes.
At least eight terrorists were believed to have executed the carefully-planned assaults, plotting their attacks from Brussels, Belgium.
Throughout the year, there were multiple mass shootings that left innocents dead in the United States — from Charleston, South Carolina to Chattanooga, Tennessee — where five U.S. military men were fatally shot at recruiting centers.