Many hunt for answers about motive in highway shootings - KCTV5

Many hunt for answers about motive in highway shootings

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Even though everyone wants to know who does this, or why, according to a local criminal psychologist, there's no single or simple answer. Even though everyone wants to know who does this, or why, according to a local criminal psychologist, there's no single or simple answer.
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV/AP) -

Police say they have linked some of the apparently random shootings targeting vehicles traveling on Kansas City-area highways over the past month.

Kansas City police didn't indicate Wednesday what led them to that conclusion. Federal authorities are helping investigate 13 shooting incidents between March 8 and April 6, three in which drivers were wounded. Ten of the shootings took place in Kansas City, while the other three were in the suburbs of Blue Springs and Lee's Summit and Leawood.

The apparent random shootings have a lot of people asking, "what type of person would do this?"

But even though everyone wants to know who does this, or why, according to a local criminal psychologist, there's no single or simple answer.

Park University professor Walter Kisthardt says this type of person's actions could fall into any number of categories.

The first is obviously "power," where the person feels in control of everything after being marginalized or disenfranchised.

Then, there's "attention." The individual has garnered an incredible amount of attention, not just from the media, but also the community discussing and reacting to his actions, and he's enjoying it.

Third would be "inadequacy," where a person who engages in this type of behavior feels inadequate about themselves, what they've accomplished, or failed to accomplished.

And these shootings make the individual feel like they have done something important.

Fifth, surprisingly, is "revenge."

"A person who is engaged in this kind of behavior, there's some way that they feel that they have been hurt, let down, disappointed. And this is something that they choose to affect this type of revenge either on that particular entity that they feel has offended them, or just the community in general," Kisthardt said.

Kisthardt says if this person is taken alive and doctors have an opportunity to talk to him, they might find his environment, socially and psychologically, playing a part in these actions as well.

Copyright 2014 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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