Jacksonville Tragedy

Jacksonville, Florida was hit with a mass shooting during a Madden NFL 19 championship series tournament.

By Erick Sandoval

     Another day, another mass shooting. Sunday, August 26, a shooting that left 3 dead (including 24 year old gunman David Katz) and 11 wounded occured in Florida.

     It was supposed to be a peaceful day at the Jacksonville Landing where EA Sports held a Madden NFL 19 championship series tournament inside a Chicago Pizza restaurant, located in the Jacksonville landing-a popular shopping center. The best Madden players from all over the country came down to the “sunshine state” to participate in the event.  David Katz was a participant and former Madden Bowl champion. Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams said Katz legally bought a .45-caliber and 9mm handgun from a licensed dealer in Baltimore. Katz would later utilized this weapon to carry out a shooting rampage.

     People inside the Chicago Pizza, eating or playing in the tournament, recall the chilling moments the shooting occurred and saw many running from the scene. The shooter was, according to multiple outlets, angry about losing when playing video games and lost twice during this tournament. Katz brought his gun down to the Chicago Pizza and attacked innocent players. One competitor that was actually playing during the crime said, “He was weird all weekend, he just came and shot up the place.”

     Past court documents showed he was mentally ill. He was Schizophrenic and took antidepressant drugs, hospitalized twice in 2007. His first stint was in an Ellicott City Mental Health Facility for 12 days. The second stay was a Rockville facility for 13 days. Katz missed extensive school time as he stayed with his mother. Another sign was his addiction to video games. His mother, Elizabeth Katz would take his controllers away because he would stay up till 4 a.m. on school nights and as a result, he would throw temper tantrums. He also punched a hole through his mother’s bedroom in an effort to regain his controllers.

     This mass shooting marks the 234th one of this year alone. It’s just a matter of time before the gun laws get even more strict. People might still ask why this country still to this day experiences these tragic events. It almost seems like there is little progress regarding gun violence. There are shootings everywhere in the world, unfortunately.



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