Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Marc Lépine's Gendercide: The Montreal Massacre


Maud Haviernick
Maud Haviernick

When the male students ran back into the room to help the women, they found a gory spectacle. Six were dead. The others needed immediate assistance. The wall behind where they had been standing was sprayed with their blood. Those who were still alive were crying or moaning.

A student called for emergency assistance, but the gunman had already found his way to another part of the building. And even when the ambulances arrived as fast as they could, the paramedics were instructed to wait until the police had cleared the building. So those inside could not yet be helped. Few people waiting outside realized what a nightmare was happening in the halls.

The news spread fast through the building that a maniac was shooting people, and those on other floors could hear the screaming and gunfire. A few managed to get behind locked doors where they waited in a panic, unsure if they were really safe. Those students who saw the gunman walk by reported later that he was smiling. "Nothing crazy," said one, "just like he was having a good time."

One female student was trapped inside a room the gunman entered. He aimed and fired, but the clip was empty, so he walked away, sparing her life. She quickly locked the door.

Inside a stairway, he bent over his gun. A student running down the steps heard him swear over his lack of bullets, fled past him, and then heard a shot fired. Apparently the man had reloaded.

He returned for the prey he had missed, but could not get past the locked door. He shot at the lock, but it still hindered him, so he went in search of easier targets. The woman's quick thinking had saved her.

Michelle Richard
Michelle Richard

He passed three people lying in the hall in pools of blood — his handiwork — and came into view of a young woman walking down a stalled escalator. The man lined her up in his sights and hit her, knocking her down the rest of the steps.

Remaining on the second floor, he saw a woman locking an office from the inside. He could see her through the glass, so he fired and hit her. She was recently married and was just an employee who had stayed a little late. But she was a woman. That's all that mattered to him.

Satisfied, the rampage killer returned to the escalator and went down. His next stop: the first floor cafeteria, where more than 100 people had gone for dinner. Students running through had urged them all to flee, but many had dismissed the warnings as last-day pranks. Those few who decided to leave did so quickly. Many remained and continued with their meal or indulged in the free wine offered that day to celebrate the term ending. Around them hung signs wishing them a Happy New Year – a year that some would never see. For them, it would be their last drink.

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