To catch a thief, you need to think like a thief. To catch a deranged gunman, you need to think like a terrorist. Such is the gist of a report by CBS New York to the effect that “the NYPD is examining ways to search the internet for potential ‘deranged’ gunmen” in response to the Newtown shootings.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said in a news conference on Monday that the techniques used to ferret out would-be mass murderers would resemble those being used to spot terrorist chatter online:
And what we’re talking about is publicly available websites, chatrooms, that sort of thing. That will enable us to use, perhaps, commonly used terms that are used by people engaged in this sort of activity.
The techniques would include cyber-searches of language that mass-casualty shooters have used in e-mails and Internet postings.
The article notes that the NYPD’s counter-terrorism division released a 182-page report last year after studying 202 mass shooting incidents.
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