Talk:Knoxville Unitarian Universalist church shooting

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When is Guilt Determined?[edit]

What is Wikipedia's policy about stating guilt before a court of law determines guilt? Shouldn't this article say "Jim David Adkisson is charged with being the gunman who fired a shotgun at members of the congregation" instead of "Gunman Jim David Adkisson fired a shotgun at members of the congregation"? Basel Maven (talk) 11:01, 24 January 2009 (UTC)

David Von Erich[edit]

Why does the link from wrestler David Von Erich lead to this guy?? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:12, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

  • Because Von Erich's real name was David Adkisson. I've fixed the problem with the David Adkisson page. --Orlady (talk) 04:40, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

Is this really important?[edit]

If you include every shooting in the world you will generate maybe millions of pages each year. WP hates lists but maybe just putting all the smaller shootings in a long list with a single reference outside WP would be better. There is actually a civilian shooting infobox? I will admit in advance that the killers 'political' motivation may make this shooting worth an article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Geo8rge (talkcontribs) 17:23, 28 July 2008 (UTC)

The motivation of the shooter has not been substantiated by a qualified expert in the field. It is irresponsible to publish speculation about hate.— Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 29 July 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Notability (criminal acts) in particular deals with this topic; apparently it's still an active proposal rather than an official policy/guideline because it is hard to form consensus. Wikipedia is not paper, so I personally have no problem with having lots of articles. I figure an article on Wikipedia will be useful if someone tries to search for it here. Note that the shooting has to have press coverage (also known as secondary sources), among other things, for it to merit inclusion. —Pie4all88 (talk) 22:07, 28 July 2008 (UTC)
Under the standard referred to by Pie4all88, it's clear that this event was much more notable than the typical shooting. The coverage has been extensive. JamesMLane t c 17:16, 29 July 2008 (UTC)
the unique confluence of an attempted mass shooting with the political motivations brings this incident as a major discussion point on issues like LGBT rights, gun control, etc. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:18, 31 July 2008 (UTC)
Last sentence answers the OP's question. ;) toll_booth (talk) 03:43, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

Y'all are titling this wrong[edit]

It's a Unitarian Universalist church, not a Unitarian church. UUs often are abbreviated as Unitarians in the US, but UUs are no longer an exclusively Christian group, while Unitarians still exist as a Christian movement. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:49, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

I agree with the above comment. It is correct to call it a Unitarian Universalist Church.
Unitarians are their own denomination. I tried to edit the page title and couldn't seem to find how, being an inexperienced wikipedian.Wildwose (talk) 17:22, 30 July 2008 (UTC)
The title does deserve discussion, but the denomination name is just one aspect of the name to consider. Before renaming it, let's consider all of the problems with the current name.
First off, WP:MOS says the case of the title is wrong -- "church" and "shooting" should not be capitalized.
Moving on from there, Wikipedia:Naming conventions (events) provides some general guidance on titling articles about events. This article includes a "when" (2008), a "where" (Tennessee), and a "what" (Unitarian church shooting). I think all 3 elements (when, where, and what) are needed (at least until the dust settles and we know how this is going to be described). "2008" is a good choice for "when." For "where," I would have chosen "Knoxville" instead of "Tennessee", for greater specificity. (Then again, I live near Knoxville. However, other crime events in this region have been identified by the specific city, not by the state.) For "what," I think "church shooting" definitely needs to be in the title, but I'm not sure if the denomination name needs to be included. If the denomination name is listed, it definitely needs to be "Unitarian Universalist" for correctness. The reason for keeping the denomination name would be that this was an attack on UUs for being liberals. The reason for not including it would be that it's a level of detail not needed to distinguish this particular event.
Right now, I'd be inclined toward calling the article 2008 Knoxville Unitarian Universalist church shooting. --Orlady (talk) 18:07, 30 July 2008 (UTC)
I agree with Orlady. It should be titled "2008 Knoxville Unitarian Universalist church shooting" as it is the most descriptive and accurate title that complies with guidelines. --132 18:32, 30 July 2008 (UTC)
church and shooting should definitely be lower case. / edg 18:40, 30 July 2008 (UTC)
 Done I agree with all of these comments and have moved the page accordingly. Aleta Sing 23:04, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

{{current}} tag or not?[edit]

To avoid an edit war, I thought I'd pose this question: Should this article have a {{current}} tag at the top?

I contend that it should be, on the grounds that the shooter hasn't even been indigted (sp?) yet, much less tried. That, and more details may always come in about the shooting--in short, this case is anything but closed. If the {{current}} tag does not belong here, I contend it should be made on a page about the shooter.

Thoughts? toll_booth (talk) 03:41, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

Well first off, I just suggested that Matthew J. Murray be merged to 2007 Colorado YWAM and New Life shootings‎. There's really nothing that can be said about the shooter that can't also be said about the shootings... and that logic applies here as well. As for the current event tag, yes information is still forthcoming, but it's not coming in a fast and furious manner. The current event tag tips editors and readers to the possibility that the article could change within mere moments. That doesn't seem to be the case here; not now, anyway. -- JeffBillman (talk) 03:51, 4 August 2008 (UTC)
See Talk:Jim David Adkisson for arguments against having a separate article about the shooter... basically WP:BLP1E issues. Aleta Sing 14:59, 4 August 2008 (UTC)
Oh, dear... so the article was created, eh? Can't say that I'm surprised, but I am a bit disappointed. For the record, my comment above was in opposition to an article about the shooter. And though I hadn't before read WP:BLP1E, it was essentially for that reason. -- JeffBillman (talk) 04:25, 5 August 2008 (UTC)

Indictment, 20 Aug 2008.[edit]

Adkisson has been indicted by a Knox County grand jury on two counts of felony murder, two counts of first-degree murder, and six counts of attempted first-degree murder. The story is from the Knoxville News Sentinel: [1]



Couldn't this shooting be considered an act of terrorism? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:55, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

Ironically enough, yes - it pretty much fits the standard definition. However, we should still refrain from calling it so, or calling Addkisson a terrorist; see WP:TERRORIST. Robofish (talk) 20:30, 24 February 2009 (UTC)
Recently, this article was added to Category:Terrorist incidents in 2008. While I suppose that technically, this article fits in that category, I agree with User:Threeafterthree's edit to remove the category. I would further suggest that this category be nominated for deletion at WP:CFD- I don't feel strongly enough to make the nomination, but would support a delete if nominated. -- JeffBillman (talk) 23:44, 20 March 2009 (UTC)
It looks like the textbook example of terrorism, the entire point was to harm as well as incite fear among the targeted group. The statement that the shooter has stated that he hopes others follow in his footsteps implies that the shooter is hoping for such actions to continue. -- (talk) 00:39, 15 May 2009 (UTC)
If this isn't an act of terrorism, then I don't know what is.--Witan (talk) 02:20, 18 February 2010 (UTC)
The question isn't whether it is obviously terrorism to a bunch of WP editors (which would be WP:OR). The question is have WP:RS's called it terrorism? LadyofShalott 04:00, 18 February 2010 (UTC)
Huh. I didn't notice that this had previously been added to, and removed from, Category:Terrorist incidents in 2008. I re-added it to that category yesterday, and it was promptly removed by User:John. I don't know whether or not that category's continued existence is useful, and don't particularly care. But as long as it exists, it seems obvious that this incident belongs in that category. The article already includes it in a terrorism-related category, and the incident is discussed on other Wikipedia pages about terrorism. There are probably a large number of WP:RS's that have labeled it "terrorism". The court filings in 2009 explicitly used that term, and it was widely reported in the media. I'm not going to get into a "revert" war myself, but I'd appreciate it if others with more WP experience than I could weigh in on this. Thanks, Brian Andross (talk) 17:09, 10 March 2011 (UTC)

was not a private in the army[edit]

David was a E4 hard stripe NCO in the army. not a private. he was busted from an E4 to a private prior to discharge. company level article 15. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:03, 1 August 2009 (UTC)

Public records are based on rank at time of discharge, because that is what will show on his DD Form 214. He may have been a corporal for most of his time, but if the DD214 says private, then all news stories will say he was a private.Boneyard90 (talk) 05:00, 8 May 2012 (UTC)

Jim David Adkisson Manifesto[edit]

Adkisson left a manifesto in his car, does anyone have links or source to this text? It's quoted from in an interview with David Neiwert, which can be found here: Interview with David Neiwert on youtube, channel talkingsticktv

An image of the handwritten document is online at .
I dislike the idea of calling it a "manifesto" -- just call it a letter. Also see for discussion about the propriety of publishing it. --Orlady (talk) 21:13, 29 August 2009 (UTC)


According to one of his neighbors, he also was upset about Christianity:

Although the UU isn't really an Christian religion, but it would make sense for the killer to have insane beliefs.


The article mentions that he was partially motivated by his hatred of African Americans. Perhaps there should be more detail about his racial views in the article? Was he a member of Stormfront? Stonemason89 (talk) 18:20, 30 April 2010 (UTC)


I am from Knoxville (although I live in Fort Lauderdale now) and I made reference to this shooting in a passing comment in another forum. I googled my way to this article because I wanted to make sure I remembered the date correctly. Maybe it is just me, but I find the photograph of Atkins offensive. Would there be any objection to replacing it with photos of Greg McKendry and Lisa Kraeger? Or, in the alternative, just leaving the space blank or, maybe, a photograph of the church. It is a beautiful piece of architecture, at least in my opinion. Atkins is morally, if not legally, deranged and I cannot see what good comes from having his photograph in the article. Mikesartin (talk) 01:11, 6 August 2012 (UTC)

Ideally, this article would be illustrated by several images (for example, images of the perpetrator, the victims, and the church), but so far the photo of the perpetrator seems to be the only one that has been uploaded to Wikipedia or Wikimedia Commons with a license allowing its free use (see Wikipedia:Non-free content for more details). --Orlady (talk) 01:43, 6 August 2012 (UTC)