The first thing that Kubota told me when he entered the car after school was that there had been three shootings in Eaton Rapids in the last 24 hours. That is odd because we have not had a homicide in the last 15 years.
Two of the shootings were a husband and wife. The husband is dead. The wife is seriously wounded. The firearm was recovered. The husband-wife live(d) about two miles from us. I told Kubota that most husband-wife shootings are murder-suicides. The fact that the firearm was recovered so quickly supports this possibility.
Though there is no national tracking system for murder–suicides in the United States, medical studies into the phenomenon estimate between 1,000 to 1,500 deaths per year in the US, with the majority occurring between spouses or intimate partners and the vast majority of the perpetrators being male. Depression, marital or/and financial problems, and other problems are generally motivators.
In 2012, the latest year for which data is available, 64 percent of deaths from gun violence were suicides, compared with 57 percent in 2006.
The other shooting
The other shooting was a driveby shooting right in town. One of the paramedics was standing by the EMS garage when somebody in an SUV popped a shot off at him/her.
Kubota wanted to sleep with his shotgun. I refused. I pointed out our multi-layered "passive security system". We have:
- Two German Shepherds. Dogs are still the best early warning system.
- A squeaky-clean reputation with regard to undocumented pharmaceuticals.
- No artifacts that have any value at a pawn shop. We visibly live within our means.
- Steel exterior doors
- Striker plates and hinges connected to the frame with deck screws
- Steel interior doors, ditto with the screws
- Slide stops on the windows
- Security film on many of the exterior windows
- Some of the interior doors have additional deterrents to breaching
- Additionally, we have active security measures that I will not not elaborate upon in a public forum.
Kubota saw the wisdom in the ERJ, multi-layered approach and slept well last night.