Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Delta State Killings. Final.

An instructor at Mississippi's Delta State University suspected of killing the woman he lived with and a colleague -- possibly as the result of a love triangle -- died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound late Monday, authorities said.

Local media, citing the Washington County Sheriff's office and other agencies, reported that Shannon Lamb, 45, was being chased by police in his black Dodge Avenger on Highway 1 near Greenville when he pulled the car over, bailed out on foot, and ran into some woods along the side of the road. Lamb had earlier spoken to police, telling them "he's not going to jail."

Delta State University police chief Lynn Buford told the Associated Press that the pursuing officers heard a single gunshot before finding Lamb wounded. The suspect was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.



  1. What strikes me most about this story is the fact that the shooter lived 300 miles away from campus. That's one hell of a commute. People talk about "freeway flyers" a lot these days. But wow. Living 300 miles from campus could drive a person mad. It certainly couldn't be good for his mental health.

    1. It sounds like the shooter was teaching online, and his domestic partner was also working online (whether for the university or some other employer isn't clear; if his partner didn't have some connection to the university, then it's very unclear how he could have thought, as some people are conjecturing, that his other victim was a romantic rival. Or maybe the love-triangle theory is just the one people jump to in the absence of other information, and the motive -- insane as it undoubtedly was -- actually did have something to do with academic interactions/politics).

      One aspect of the situation (in addition to all the other, obvious ones) that I find really depressing is that the shooting of a beloved professor on a college campus receives a lot of press attention (understandably and perhaps even deservedly so), while the shooting of a woman by her live-in partner, taken by itself, would barely make the local news, precisely because it's such a common event. I seem to remember that something somewhat (though not precisely) similar happened at VA Tech: the first shootings were in a dorm, and a general alarm wasn't raised in part because it seemed like they could have been "just" a domestic/interpersonal conflict of some sort. It sounds like the authorities didn't know about the first shooting in this case until the killer reported it himself, so the cases aren't precisely parallel, but some of the underlying attitudes toward different kinds of crimes (and crime victims) seem similar.

    2. Come on, Cassandra, we've got more than a thousand women getting killed by their partners every year in this country. It's a "dog bites man" story. Readers want something new.

      Snark aside, this is a horrible story all around. The Daily Mail (I know) is reporting now that it's all due to a spider bite (?)


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