On December 14, 2012, 20-year-old Adam Lanza shoots and kills his mother at their Newtown, Connecticut, home then drives to nearby Sandy Hook Elementary School, where he kills 20 first graders and six school employees before turning a gun on himself. The Sandy Hook tragedy was the second-deadliest mass-shooting in the United States, following the 2007 shooting at Virginia Tech, in which a gunman killed 32 students and teachers before committing suicide.
The Texas Seven
On December 13, 2000, seven convicts break out of a maximum-security prison in South Texas, setting off a massive six-week manhunt. The escapees, dubbed the "Texas Seven" by the media, overpowered civilian employees and prison guards in the maintenance shop where they worked and stole clothing, guns and a vehicle. The men left a note saying: "You haven't heard the last of us yet."
On December 12, 1913, two years after it was stolen from the Louvre Museum in Paris, Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece The Mona Lisa is recovered inside Italian waiter Vincenzo Peruggia's apartment in Florence. Peruggia had previously worked at the Louvre and had participated in the heist with a group of accomplices dressed as Louvre janitors on the morning of August 21, 1911.
On December 11, 1964, in response to a reported shooting, officers of the Los Angeles Police Department were dispatched to the Hacienda Motel, where they found singer Sam Cooke dead on the office floor, shot three times in the chest by the motel's manager, Bertha Franklin. The authorities ruled Cooke's death a case of justifiable homicide, based on the testimony of Franklin, who claimed that Cooke had threatened her life after attempting to rape a young woman with whom he had earlier checked in.
Frank Sinatra Jr.
On December 10, 1963, Frank Sinatra Jr., who was kidnapped in Lake Tahoe, California, two days earlier is allowed to talk to his father briefly. The 19-year-old man, who was trying to follow in his father's footsteps by pursuing a singing career, was abducted at gunpoint from his hotel room at Harrah's Casino and taken to Canoga Park. After the brief conversation between father and son, the kidnappers demanded a ransom of $240,000.
On December 9, 1981, Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner is found dead on the street with Mumia Abu-Jamal, a well-known activist and freelance journalist, lying severely wounded nearby. In 1982, Abu-Jamal was tried for and convicted of Faulkner's murder, but because of the murky circumstances surrounding the incident and a trial that many believe was unfair, activists have since protested Abu-Jamal's imprisonment.
On December 7, 1992, Colin Ferguson opens fire on a Long Island Rail Road commuter train from New York City, killing 6 and injuring 19. Other train passengers stopped the perpetrator by tackling and holding him down. Ferguson later attributed the shooting spree to his deep-seated hatred of white people.