A Profile of Workplace Killers


Through an investigation of employees involved in workplace shootings, USA Today was able to compile a profile of traits often shared by workplace killers, USA Today reported July 17.

USA Today compiled a database of 224 fatal incidents that took place from 1975 through 2003. In addition, the newspaper interviewed 18 people currently in prison for workplace killings, as well as survivors and employers.

The investigation found that a workplace killer is typically a 37-year-old single man who worked at the company at least four years. The shooting is generally prompted by personal problems in life and at work, and often follows a firing or on-the-job altercation.

The study further showed that the shootings are not random. Rather, most workplace killers harbor grudges and target certain co-workers and bosses.

The investigation found that co-workers and bosses often note concerns about the killer's temper prior to the attack. However, employees' lax attitudes towards workplace violence often put them at risk, USA Today noted.