53 People Died in Mass Shootings in August Alone in the U.S. – The New York Times

The month of August ended as it began: with a shooting rampage and a significant death toll.

Seven people were killed near Odessa, Tex., on Saturday as a gunman started shooting indiscriminately at cars, bringing the number of victims of mass killings by firearms to 53 for the month. The authorities on Sunday revised the death toll from the shooting in Odessa to seven from five, excluding the gunman.

The term mass killings is defined by the Justice Department as three or more killings in a single episode, excluding the death of a gunman. There is no legal definition for the term mass shooting, despite its frequent use by gun control groups and the news media.

This month’s loss of life was most acute in Texas, where four of the eight deadliest shootings occurred, including an Aug. 3 massacre at a Walmart in El Paso that killed 22 people.

The spate of gun violence has left the country on edge and catalyzed a more intense debate over gun control.

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