America's most deadly shootings

America's most deadly shootings
By NBC News
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Below is a list of some of the most deadly shootings on US soil


by Hasani Gittens, Helen Kwong and Kalhan Rosenblatt, NBC News

The mass shooting as Jason Aldean performed at a country music festival in Las Vegas is now the deadliest such incident in modern American history.

It eclipsed the 2016 Pulse nightclub massacre in Orlando as the worst event of its kind.

These are the deadliest mass shootings on U.S. soil:

59 killed

Around 10 p.m. Sunday (1 a.m. ET), gunman Stephen Paddock opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort on a crowd watching Aldean. Several weapons were located in the 64-year-old Paddock’s hotel room. Police reported more than 50 people were killed and more than 500 people were injured in the shooting.

49 killed

On June 12, 2016, 49 people were killed and dozens more were wounded after gunman Omar Mateen opened fire and took hostages at Pulse, a LGBT-friendly nightclub in Orlando, Florida. He was later killed following a standoff with police. Mateen was a lone-wolf shooter, using a rifle and handgun he’d purchased legally, according to authorities.

32 killed

On April 16, 2007, Virginia Tech student Seung-Hui Cho shot 32 people to death on the Blacksburg, Virginia, campus before killing himself. Another 17 people were injured. Days after the worst school shooting in the nation’s history, NBC News received a package from Cho, 23, that contained a video of him ranting about rich “brats” and complaining about being bullied.

27 killed

On Dec. 14, 2012, 20-year-old Adam Lanza killed 27 people, including his mother, 20 elementary school kids and six school staff and faculty at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. He also took his own life. Lanza suffered from extreme mental health issues that weren’t treated, and was preoccupied with violence, a report from state officials found. He also had easy access to weapons, the report said.

23 killed

On Oct. 16, 1991, a 35-year-old named George Hennard crashed his pickup through Luby’s Cafeteria, a packed restaurant in Killeen, Texas. He shot and killed 23 people before turning the gun on himself. Twenty-seven others were wounded. According to a former roommate, Hennard “hated blacks, Hispanics, gays. He said women were snakes.”

21 killed

On July 18, 1984, James Huberty, a 41-year-old former security guard who had lost his job, opened fire at a McDonald’s in San Ysidro, California. He killed 21 employees and customers, including children. A police sniper killed him an hour after he started shooting.

18 killed

On Aug. 1, 1966, former U.S. Marine Charles Joseph Whitman, 25, killed his mother and wife, then went on top of a tower at University of Texas at Austin and killed 16 others. He also wounded at least 30. Whitman had complained of physical and mental health issues before the attack. He was then shot by a police officer. An autopsy after his death revealed he had a brain tumor, but it was not clear whether that had affected his actions.


14 killed

On Dec. 2, 2015, 14 people were killed in an attack at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California, a state-run facility that provides services to people with developmentally disabled people and trains social workers who care for them. The husband-and-wife assailants were eventually killed by police in a shootout.

14 killed

On Aug. 20, 1986, Patrick Henry Sherill killed 14 fellow postal workers in Edmond, Oklahoma, and then killed himself with a shot to the head. The rampage came a week after two supervisors reprimanded him for lousy performance.

13 killed


On April 20, 1999, students Eric Harris, 18, and Dylan Klebold, 17, killed 12 other students and a teacher at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Two dozen were injured. They killed themselves in the school’s library. In journal entries, the high school seniors had written about a desire to imitate events such as the Oklahoma City bombing.

13 killed

On Nov. 5, 2009, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, 39, killed 13 people and injured 32 others at Fort Hood, Texas. Hasan has been sentenced to death.

13 killed

On April 3, 2009, in Binghamton, New York, 41-year-old Jiverly Wong, killed 13 people and injured four others at an immigrant services center before killing himself. President Obama called the shootings “an act of senseless violence.”


13 killed

On Feb. 18, 1983, three robbers at the Wah Mee gambling club in Seattle killed 13 people. Kwan Fai Mak and Benjamin Ng were convicted of murder later that year and are serving life sentences; Wai-Chu Ng was deported to Hong Kong in 2014.

Early 1900s and prior

Dozens of earlier non-war massacres in the United States have left hundreds dead. Often racially motivated, these shootings date back to before American independence. A selection of these shootings are believed to have killed numbers between five and 300 people.

In May 1921, approximately 300 black Americans were killed during the Tulsa Race Massacre, which destroyed Oklahoma’s “Black Wall Street,” according to the Smithsonian.


In November 1887, white vigilantes shot and killed between 30 to 60 unarmed black sugar plantation field hands, who were on strike, according to

During the post-civil war Reconstruction era, thousands of black Americans were killed in what is considered one of the most violent times in U.S. history. In April 1873, as many as 150 black Americans were killed when a white mob clashed with a black militia during the Colfax massacre.

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