For Release: Friday, June 11, 2010
At Least 65 Innocent People Have Been Killed in Recent Mass Shootings Involving Concealed Handgun Permit Holders
Washington, DC–Gerardo Regalado, the 38-year-old man who shot seven women, killing four, earlier this week at a Hialeah, Florida, restaurant is at least the 16th person licensed to carry a concealed handgun reported to have committed a mass shooting (three victims or more) since May 2007 according to Violence Policy Center (VPC) research. The 15 prior mass shootings, two of which occurred in Florida, are detailed on Concealed Carry Killers, an on-line resource that tallies from news reports killings by concealed handgun permit holders. Not including this most recent shooting, the website reports that since May 2007 concealed handgun permit holders have killed a total of at least 166 people, including nine law enforcement officers.
According to news reports, Regalado, who killed himself after the shooting, had a concealed handgun permit–even though relatives described him as “pure evil” with a history of abusing women and having served “hard time” in a Cuban prison.
Prior to the Hialeah shooting, concealed handgun permit holders had claimed 61 innocent lives in 15 mass shootings since May 2007 (six of the shooters killed themselves, four have been convicted, and five cases are pending). Regalado’s attack brings the total number of innocent victims reportedly killed by concealed handgun permit holders in mass shootings during this period to 65, including a 2009 attack at a Pennsylvania health club where, like Regalado, the shooter targeted women–killing three and wounding nine. The Hialeah shooting is the third known mass shooting in Florida by a concealed carry permit holder since September 2007. In November 2009, concealed handgun permit holder Paul Michael Merhige allegedly opened fire at his family’s Thanksgiving dinner, shooting six relatives and killing four, including his 76-year-old aunt, his pregnant sister, and a six-year-old cousin. In May 2009, concealed handgun permit holder Guillermo Zarabozo was found guilty of the September 2007 murders with an accomplice of the four crew members of the charter boat Joe Cool and was sentenced to five consecutive life terms in prison plus an additional 85 years to be served consecutive to the life terms.
In response to this latest tragedy committed by a concealed handgun permit holder, VPC Legislative Director Kristen Rand states, “Concealed handgun permit holders don’t prevent mass shootings, they commit them. How much blood must run in the streets before state legislators act to disarm these rampage shooters?”