Seung-Hui Cho

Seung-Hui Cho (in Korean, properly „Cho Seung-Hui”) Some initial media reports referred to Cho’s name as Cho Seung-hui, with the family name „Cho” appearing ahead of the given name in accordance with Korean naming custom. However, subsequent statements by the family indicated the preference for the Western ordering of Cho’s name as Seung-hui Cho. Cho himself sometimes used the name Seung Cho. (; January 18, 1984 – April 16, 2007) was a South Korean-born mass murderer who killed 32 people and wounded 17 others on April 16, 2007, at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg, Virginia. An additional six people were injured jumping from windows to escape. He was a senior-level undergraduate student at the university. The shooting rampage came to be known as the Virginia Tech shooting. Cho committed suicide after police breached the doors of the building where the majority of the shooting had taken place. His body is buried in Fairfax, Virginia. Born in South Korea, Cho arrived in the United States at the age of eight with his family. He became a U.S. permanent resident as a South Korean national. In middle school, he was diagnosed with a severe anxiety disorder with selective mutism, as well as major depressive disorder. After his diagnosis, he began receiving treatment and continued to receive therapy and special education support until his junior year of high school. During Cho’s last two years at Virginia Tech, several instances of his abnormal behavior, as well as plays and other writings he submitted containing references to violence, caused concern among teachers and classmates. In the aftermath of the shootings, Virginian governor Tim Kaine convened a panel consisting of various officials and experts to investigate and examine the response and handling of issues related to the shootings. The panel released its final report in August 2007, devoting more than 30 pages to detailing Cho’s troubled history. In the report, the panel criticized the failure of the educators and mental health professionals who came into contact with Cho during his college years to notice his deteriorating condition and help him. The panel also criticized misinterpretations of privacy laws and gaps in Virginia’s mental health system and gun laws. In addition, the panel faulted Virginia Tech administrators in particular for failing to take immediate action after the first shootings. Nevertheless, the report did acknowledge that Cho was still primarily responsible for not seeking assistance and for his murderous rampage.

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