Predicting who's at risk for violence isn't easy

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Associated Press

Posted on December 22, 2012 at 3:32 AM

Updated Saturday, Dec 22 at 5:33 AM

CHICAGO (AP) — When horrible crimes happen like the Connecticut school shootings, people figure there surely were hints of impending violence. But experts say predicting who will be the next mass shooter is virtually impossible. That's partly because as commonplace as these calamities seem, they are relatively rare crimes.

Experts say mass shooters sometimes plan their clothing and prepare by target practicing, or voice threats. But most people who make violent threats never act on them.

Still, a combination of risks in troubled kids or adults including drug use and easy access to guns can increase the chances for violence.

Experts say violent threats should be taken seriously. Parents should attempt to arrange a mental health evaluation and treatment if needed.

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