John Drake, Nashville Police Chief, made an interesting revelation Monday regarding the plans of the Covenant School massacre perpetrator.
Drake stated that investigators had found evidence that the perpetrator planned to attack another place, but that they decided against it because of its security.
Drake stated that there was another location mentioned but they didn’t because of the threat assessment of the suspect of too many security. “That area was located here in Nashville so we are continuing that investigation.”
Drake confirmed that the perpetrator had written an explanation explaining why she carried out the attack. It also included detailed plans. This manifesto is likely to be the reason law enforcement believes the perpetrator skipped her first target location due to “too many security.”
This admission is significant, as it confirms, at least from an anecdotal level that potential targets are “hard” rather than “soft” due to increased security measures such as armed personnel. Armed security advocates argue that “hard targets” are more effective than “soft targets” in deterring those who want to commit violence.
Drake suggested that one of these locations could have been a mall nearby.
Drake stated to CBS News that he believes there were other targets. He also mentioned family members and possibly one of the malls in Nashville. “And that just didn’t happen.”
It is unknown if the mall was actually the target of the attackers. Malls are more difficult targets as many people are legally armed to protect themselves. A massacre in El Paso was prevented by a teenager who opened fire inside the mall. Last year, an armed citizen killed a man who set fire to a Indiana mall food court.
Schools are, however, considered “soft targets” and firearms are not allowed in them.
Police don’t believe any victims of Monday’s atrocity were specifically targeted. Instead, the target was the location. Drake said that the perpetrator might have resentfully been sent to the school as a child.