Virginia Tech Shooting: What Went Wrong  Case Study

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Conflict Resolution: Analysis of the Virginia Tech Shootings

This paper examines the horrible tragedy that struck Virginia Tech on that took place on April 16, 2007. This paper goes on to examine things such as the delays of reporting the correct information of the shooting at its early stages to the poor security that was put in operation. It also explores the life of disturbed student and what possibly led up to that fatal day. It goes into detail and gives a psychological examination of his being and brings up the point of how a university failed at not being able to see that Cho, the shooter was dangerous to himself and to other around him. The paper dives into the aftermath of explaining how campus security has changed its game since that dreadful day, as well as how it had effected other colleges around the nation and what they have done to beef up security.

Conflict Resolution: Analysis of the Virginia Tech Shootings

Identify subsequent revisions to on and off campus reports

When the shootings were over, the state started making corrections to its official report on the Virginia Tech massacre. This was done in order to confirm that university officials made the decision to lock down buildings while officials were telling told their own families about the first shootings way before letting the rest of the campus know. That warning, which did not caution Virginia Tech that a shooter was at large, took place 15 minutes before shooter Seung-Hui Cho started his second round of killings around 9:40 that morning, in Norris Hall (Friedman, 2009). In a minute before Cho shot himself, the first warning came, at around 9:50 A.M. The revision approves previous journalism by the Richmond Times-Dispatch that the law enforcement agency did not began watching for a suspect in the first two killings up until 40 minutes later than the first report mentioned. That first report put the blame on delays in cautioning Virginia Tech on the impression the top administrators had that law enforcement by now had a suspect and that the suspect was not on campus. The change, named "Addition," of the first August 2007 report on the shootings validates the initial story, agreeing to its compiler. Equally the revision and the 2007 report were written by the company that acted as advisers to the board Gov. Timothy M. Kaine called to examine the carnage. The Times-Dispatch found copies later on. However, the revision reveals facts from official records in regards to Cho's long history of aggressive behavior at Tech and the lack of reaction by university and police department.

Life of Seung-Hui Cho

In 1984, in South Korea, Seung-Hui Cho was born (Cull, 2011). At the age of 8 years old, his family moved to the United States. The Cho Family ultimately decided to stay in Centreville, Virginia, where they ran a business that involved dry-cleaning. Cho was recognized as an introverted child who was into basketball and was fascinated with math. But as stated by an article in Newsweek magazine, Cho was also terrorized by other children, as well as wealthy members of his church. At a young age he was picked on by other students, later on Cho was labeled by his college professors as a distressed outsider. In 2005, there were two incidents where he was accused of stalking female students, nevertheless neither victim filed charges (GovernorKaine, 2007). In the depths of despair Cho made a statement to a suitemate. This statement got him put in a psychiatric hospital in December 2005, however he was let go with orders to obtain therapy as an outpatient.

Cho, in high school, was labeled as aloof and sullen. After move up in 2003, he attended Virginia Tech University. Sited in Blacksburg, Virginia, the university has a wide-ranging campus with beyond 30,000 students living there. As a near-silent outsider Cho stood out writing horrific poems, plays and stories. He sometimes talked about himself as "Question Mark." (Richard J. Bonnie, 2012)

Five weeks before the shooting went down, Cho purchased his first handgun and bought the second one earlier to the date of the occurrence. From evidence established in his dorm room, it was obvious that he had been scheduling the assault on his colleagues and the faculty for a while.

Timeline of the Shootings

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a.m.: Although in Suite 2121 of Harper Hall, (Cull, 2011)Joseph E. "Joe" Aust, (Crizer, 2012) a roommate of Cho, discerned that Cho was wide-awake and at his computer.

7:15 a.m.: A 9-1-1 crisis call to Virginia Tech campus police force conveyed a shooting at West Ambler Johnston Hall, killing Ryan Christopher Clark, the resident advisor, dead and Emily Hilscher seriously injured in Room 4040, (Crizer, 2012)which accommodated Hilscher

About 9:05 A.M. To 9:15 A.M.: In Norris Hall, which was an Engineering building Cho was observed, utilizing chains (more than likely the ones he had bought at Home Depot), Cho then got them and chained the building's doors shut.

9:26 a.m.: Electronic mail were sent to Virginia Tech staff, faculty, and students letting them know of a "shooting occurrence" at the West AJ dormitory. (Cull, 2011)

About 9:30 AM: A female student alerted the occupants that a shooting was taking place at West Ambler Johnston 9:26 A.M.: Electronic mail were sent to Virginia Tech staff, faculty, and students notifying them of a "shooting incident" at the West AJ student house. (Crizer, 2012)

A picture of Elementary French class students hide in Holden Hall Room 212 from the killer (Szkotak, 2013)

4:30 p.m.: Virginia Tech statement established that there had been as a minimum 31 demises at Norris Hall, as well as Cho. (Richard J. Bonnie, 2012)

5:31 p.m.: News broadcast that Cho shot himself in the face.

7:30 p.m.: there was a news consultation that established the amount of weaponries utilized, and a likely proof of identity of Cho that would not be released at that time.

8:22 p.m.: Cho wearing a bullet-proof vest was confirmed by news stations.

9:06 p.m.: Law enforcement agency knocked on the door of Suite 2121, draw somebody's attention to Grewal and enlightening him that Cho killed the students in Norris and West Ambler Johnston halls

Mental Health Providers

Research shows that the records narrate two telephone discussions and one in-person appointment among Cho and mental health specialists at the Cook Counseling Center Virginia Tech's student mental health services contributor, in the winter of 2005, the first occurrences wherein the student ever intermingled with the center, as stated by powers that be. During the course of his visits with mental health professionals, Cho repudiated having any homicidal or suicidal thoughts, as stated by documents.


Poet Nikki Giovanni and professor at Virginia Tech, had him put out of her class for troubling the other students. Later on she would tell TIME magazine that "there was something callous about this boy." She said that he was "a bully" and constantly came to class sporting sunglasses and a hat, which she would continually ask him to take off (Jackman, 2007). Cho was as well taking pictures of the knees and legs of female students in the lecture room. Other members of Virginia Tech English department faculty were worried about him also. The co-director of Virginia Tech's creative writing program, Lucinda Roy, took him out of class and taught him on her own. Roy also urged Cho to get therapy.

Law Enforcement

The disaster of the Virginia Tech shooting demonstrated the significance of an appropriate reply and abrupt invasion of the building. In advance of the Virginia Tech attack occurring, two SWAT teams were on college grounds and law enforcement agency were by now on campus examining a double homicide. When calls came in about the shooting, officers only had to travel across campus to Norris Hall. Officers arrived at the hall 3 minutes after the attack began. Police attempted to enter the first doors, which were chained closed. They moved on to the second set of doors, also chained. The third set was chained as well. Finally, the fourth set of doors was only locked, not chained. The lesson we learned from this tragedy is that law enforcement needs to enter the building as quickly as possible through the first entry that they find.

For the reason that university officials misinterpreted federal privacy laws as prohibiting any discussion of a student's mental health facts, Virginia Tech panel's long-awaited report determines, they missed many signs of the gunman's mental health complications. local and campus police responses were "well-harmonized," the report said, nevertheless university police officers make a mistake in precipitately making the point that their first lead in the double homicide was supposed to be a good one. The law enforcement at first believed the shooting was a remote domestic dispute and mistakenly followed a suspect who they thought had left the university grounds.

Local / State Law

The research shows that the House and Senate were the ones that made the decision to pass some amendments…

Sources Used in Documents:


Crizer, Z. (2012, April 15). Virginia Tech leads campus safety revolution. Retrieved from collegiatetimes:

Cull, I. (2011, December 13). GU tightened campus security in wake of VA Tech massacre. Retrieved from KXLY:

Federal Bureau of Investigation. (2007, April 7). School Shooting: Update on Our Role at Virginia Tech. Retrieved from

Friedman, E. (2009, August 9). Va. Tech Shooter Seung-Hui Cho's Mental Health Records Released. Retrieved from ABC News:

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