BGSU professor explains difference between terrorist and mass shooter

BGSU professor explains difference between terrorist and mass shooter

TOLEDO (WTOL) - We're learning more about both Elizabeth Lecron and Damon Joseph.

Despite both being arrested on terrorism charges, experts say the motivation behind their planned attacks are very different.

BGSU professor explains difference between terrorist and mass shooter

Experts say there is a difference between a terrorist and a mass shooter.

A terrorist has some sort of political motive behind their attack or may be targeting a certain group of people. So in Damon Joseph’s case, the FBI says he was targeting people based off their religion.

However in Elizabeth LeCron's case, investigators say she just wanted to cause mass casualties.

She did talk about admiring what happened at Columbine, but there was no political or religious drive behind her actions.

Why does this matter? It can help investigators target these types of people before they are able to follow through with their plans.

“These are both essentially lone wolves, right? From what we know now, they aren’t operating in a group, they aren’t getting directed by anybody, they’ve just done this on their own. The FBI caught onto them early and stopped them before they’ve done any damage," said Mark Simon, BGSU associate professor of political science.

Court records indicate Damon Joseph has a history of domestic violence. He choked a family member in December of 2016.

Experts say choking is a warning sign linked to someone wanting to murder people.

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