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I, as a natural selector, will eliminate all whom I see unfit, disgraces of human race and failures of natural selection.
Auvinen in his manifesto

Pekka-Eric Auvinen, also known as The YouTube Killer, was a Finnish school shooter and mass murderer who was responsible for the Jokela High School massacre on November 7, 2007 in the village of Jokela in Tuusula, Finland.

Background[]

Pekka-Eric Auvinen was born on June 4, 1989 to Ismo Auvinen and Mikaela Vuorio. Prior to the massacre, Auvinen had no criminal record.

According to the Finnish National Bureau of Investigation, Auvinen excelled moderately in school and had plans to graduate in the following spring preceding to the events of the shooting.

To some people, he was often regarded as a shy student who isolated himself from others and was prone to blushing when he was embarrassed. However, at the same time, it was believed that Auvinen was the target of frequent "long term" bullying.

Several students reported sudden changes in his behavior to a youth worker, stating that he acted threateningly and sworn to them that they would die in a "white revolution". According to one of his teachers, Auvinen was a militant radical who had a peaked interest in both the "far left" and "far right" movements. As it turned out, Auvinen was a Nazi enthusiast.

Between the month of December in 2006 to the month of January in 2007, both of Auvinen's parents attempted to get him some help for his anxiety and depression by referring him to a psychiatric outpatient clinic. The offer was refused due to perceived mild symptoms and they were alternatively given antidepressants to give to Auvinen before any attempts to hospitalize him.

Online Activity[]

Auvinen had numerous online aliases, including two YouTube accounts under the handles of "Sturmgeist89" and "NaturalSelector89" where he would post videos of various school shootings and other violent incidents such as the Columbine High School Massacre, the bombing during the 2003 Iraq Invasion, the sarin attack on the Tokyo Subway, and the Waco Siege. He was also an atheist who frequently posted anti-theist videos, as well as a fan of Social Darwinism.

On October 8th, 2008, a video made by the YouTube channel "finnbluus" uploaded a video titled "For Our Son". In the video, it shows a seemingly normal child, whom one may assume was one of the victims, but on the thumbnail and the 1:40 mark, is shown to be Auvinen, with the song "It's A Long Road" by Jerry Goldsmith playing in the background. The description of the channel states, "I don't accept school[ ]shootings. I don't promote violence. I have [the] right to do my grief in peace. This video, For Our Son, is my way to process grief", and (roughly translated), "In the evening where the weather is stormy, are seven bounty hunters. They know where the outlaw is, of which tens of thousands have been promised. The birds of prey, prey". The channel claims to be ran by his father, Ismo.

In the months before the massacre, American YouTuber Thomas James Kirk, who went by the name of "TheAmazingAthiest", called the authorities in order to investigate a series of channels with content regarding school shootings which also included Auvinen's. However this drew the ire of the small yet vocal community of online individuals who idolized mass murderers including a female YouTube user by the name of "Robin McVeigh" (a nod to the Oklahoma City Bomber, Timothy McVeigh), who would routinely slander and attack users who disagreed with murder, threaten the lives of many YouTubers (including Kirk and a female friend who'd warned him of the dangers) and claim that those users were bullying/harassing Auvinen.

At the same time, Auvinen began making preparations for the shooting by writing a manifesto in both Finnish and English and posting it online, acquired a permit to carry a firearm, and purchased a gun and several rounds of ammunition. On November 5th, Auvinen went into the woods and recorded himself shooting apples as a form of "target practice" before posting the images/videos on the internet. On the night prior to the events of the massacre, Auvinen created several text files, including a farewell message to his parents.

Shooting[]

On November 7, Auvinen never showed up for his first class at school and took to surfing on the Internet instead. At approximately 9:33 AM, Auvinen posted a video onto YouTube which showed the Jokela High School across a pond before cutting to a reddish image of him pointing his gun at the camera. After 11 AM, he edited the video and sent a message to the school killings Net community; quoting that "history would be made that day". By 11:28 AM, Auvinen shut down his computer and proceeded to the school by bicycle. He arrived at the school at around 11:37 AM and entered the basement through a door just below the school canteen.

At 11:42 AM, the massacre began when Auvinen shot an upper secondary school student. Afterwards, he began to travel to the lavatories on the ground floor corridor. Several students were confused about what was going on. Others tried to call for help from the ERC. As this happened, Auvinen shot two other students. The school's nurse, Sirkka Kaarakka, shouted at the students to leave the building before making a call to the ERC when she realized that a student had been shot. While Kaarakka made the phone call, Auvinen shot a fourth student before setting his sights on her. After shooting her, Auvinen shot a fifth student.

At around 11:46 AM, six people had been killed within four minutes. A student entered the deputy head teacher's office to warn her that there was a gunman at the school. The deputy headteacher passed this message onto the head teacher, Helena Kalmi. At 11:47 AM, Kalmi made an announcement on the PA system that told the students to remain in the classrooms and not to leave.

After the announcement had been made, Auvinen fired several shots in the corridors and shouted, "I'll kill all of you!" However, when he stumbled across the path of a student's mother who just happened to have entered the building at the time, he spared her. After this, though, he attempted to enter a classroom on the ground-floor and shot through the door three times, injuring a student in the foot in the process. Auvinen ascended two floors up to the second floor and came across two students sitting on a bench within the corridor. One of them escaped, but the other was fatally wounded by Auvinen. At some point, Auvinen sprayed a flammable liquid on the corridor wall and attempted to ignite it with matches, but ultimately failed.

After the attempted arson, Auvinen descended to the corridor in front of the school canteen and attempted to enter, only to find that the doors had been closed and locked. He demanded to be let in before shooting through the doors and hitting several chairs. As this was happening, a group of people that were hiding in the canteen managed to escape through the other end and hid in rooms behind the canteen's kitchen.

At around 11:54 AM, Kalmi and an education welfare officer exited through the ground-floor door of the old building and ran to the pond side of the school. Kalmi stopped between the school building and the pond to make a phone call. The education welfare officer left for a car next to the sports hall and proceeded to the end of the car park to guide rescue vehicles to the scene of the massacre. Just as he was doing so, Auvinen exited out of the exit below the canteen, cursing. This caused the education welfare officer to flee to the field.

At 11:57 AM, Auvinen shot Kalmi several times in the head. Later on, he entered the school again and ascended to the first floor. He attempted to enter the school faculty room but to no avail. He then proceeded to a comprehensive-school classroom and entered through an open door. While he was there, Auvinen pointed his gun at the students, told them that there was a "revolution" going on and instructed them to start breaking things. When the students either refused or were confused about what was going on, he fired at a television set and the window within the room and left without firing any shots at the students.

A few minutes past noon, Auvinen was roaming about through the corridor on the first floor in front of the school faculty room. Meanwhile, the first set of policemen and ambulances were on the scene near the inner court. When he saw this, Auvinen tried to fire through the window at an oblique angle toward the direction of the inner court, but the bullet couldn't penetrate the glass. When this happened, he took up a position near the front entrance and fired two shots at the policemen who attempted to approach him and gave him orders to drop the gun at around 12:04 PM. After this, he proceeded to walk toward a lavatory next to the canteen. While inside the lavatory, Auvinen shot himself in the head, but survived. He was found nearly two hours later in a search conducted by law enforcement and transferred to the Helsinki University Central Hospital, where he died at 10:15 PM that evening.

Aftermath[]

Flags were flown at half-staff on November 8, throughout the country by officials and private entities alike, and the Finnish government held a moment of silence while in session. Numerous individuals within both the Finnish government and many other governments outside of Finland ranging from Norway, Iceland, Ireland, the EU, Sweden, and Estonia have condemned the massacre and expressed their condolences for the families and friends of the victims.

Over the course of the investigation, Finnish police found a total of 75 casings and 327 unused rounds of ammunition at the scene. Auvinen's suicide note was also discovered. A 2,000-page police report regarding the shooting was released in April 2008.

After the shooting, numerous copycat threats started arising in both Finland and Sweden. The Kauhajoki School massacre, which transpired on September 23, 2008, was carried out by a 22-year-old culinary arts student suspected to have known Pekka-Eric Auvinen, but in the final investigation no proof of this was found.

Modus Operandi[]

Auvinen shot all of his victims with a .22 SIG Mosquito. He also sprayed the walls of a corridor in the school with a flammable liquid and attempted to ignite it but failed. Most of the victims were students, though three of the fatalities were faculty members.

Known Victims[]

All of the following were attacked during the November 7, 2007 Jokela High School massacre.

Fatalities[]

  • Ville Heinonen, 16
  • Hanna Kinnunun, 25
  • Mikko Hiltunen, 17
  • Ari Palsanen, 18
  • Sirkka Kaarakka, 43 (the school nurse)
  • Mika Pulkkinen, 17
  • Sameli Nurmi, 17
  • Helena Kalmi, 61 (the head teacher; shot seven times)

Survivors[]

  • Unnamed student (shot in the toe)
  • Twelve unnamed people (all injured, but not by gunfire)
  • Two unnamed police officers (shot at, but missed)
  • Unnamed woman (mother of student; intended, but relented)
  • Numerous unnamed students (all intended, but relented)

On Criminal Minds[]

  • Season Seven
    • "Painless" - While Auvinen was never directly mentioned or referenced on the show, he appears to have been an inspiration for Randy Slade - Both were school shooters and mass murderers who targeted the high school they attended, shot their victims with a pistol and had one other weapon (a SEMTEX bomb in Slade's case, while Auvinen attempted to set a fire), had some sort of superiority complex as a motive (Slade believed himself "God", while Auvinen believed in "natural selection"), posted their plans online, spared at least one victim, left messages for their families, and committed suicide after their massacre.

Sources[]

References[]

  1. Auvinen stated in his manifesto that the shooting would be "political terrorism" so it would not just be another school massacre. Social Darwinism was his ideology.
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