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(Photo by AFP) (Photo credit should read /AFP/Getty Images)Soon after 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz shot and killed 17 students and faculty members at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14, media attention immediately turned to who the shooter was and what "warning signs" illustrated prior to the event may have indicated that he was likely to carry out such a horrendous attack.Much of the focus was on his potential ties to white nationalist groups (there is still no evidence of such ties), as well as his ongoing run-ins with law enforcement, who were reportedly called to his residences dozens of times.This behavior on the shooters's parts is indicative of a much larger and systemic issue that's not getting as much attention: teen dating violence. Additionally, women ages 16 to 24 experience dating violence at rates three times the national average, and roughly 43% of LGBTQ adolescents experience physical dating violence, according to the Urban Institute.
Melanie Sperling, chief of staff at One Love Foundation, tells that it's largely cultural.
The gunman, arrested on murder charges, was identified as Dimitrios Pagourtzis, a 17-year-old junior at Santa Fe High School.
He is being held on capital murder charges, meaning he could face the death penalty.
Candles, flowers and stuffed animals line a table during a vigil in Santa Fe, Texas for the victims of the mass shooting on May 18, 2018.
- Ten people, mostly students, were killed when a teenage classmate armed with a shotgun and a revolver opened fire in a Texas high school May 18, 2018, the latest deadly school shooting to hit the United States.