Was Adam Lanza an Anders Breivik copycat? Why experts are skeptical (+video)
A CBS News report suggests that Sandy Hook shooter Adam Lanza was influenced by violent video games and Anders Breivik's Norwegian rampage. Experts cast doubts on both assertions.
New reports suggesting Sandy Hook Elementary School shooter Adam Lanza was inspired by violent video games, as well as a desire to “out-kill” Norway mass shooter Anders Breivik, has added fuel to the firestorm over the role violent video games and copycat behavior play in mass shootings.
Law-enforcement officials speaking with CBS News say evidence found in Mr. Lanza’s home – including a trove of violent video games and newspaper clippings about the 2011 Norway mass shooting – led them to deduce potential motives behind the Newtown, Conn., massacre that left 20 children and six adults dead at Sandy Hook late last year.
But criminal-justice experts say research does not support a link between violent video games and mass shootings such as the one Lanza carried out Dec. 14.
“There is no research to support that violent video games are linked to violent behavior or to crime,” says Scott Belshaw, a criminal-justice professor at the University of North Texas in Denton. “Research does not substantiate that at all.”
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