For those of you who don't know, the book "Rage" is a fictional novel about a school shooting in which a boy, after being expelled, kills his Algebra teacher and takes the class hostage.
The novel's plot vaguely resembles actual events that have transpired since the book's publication, to a degree that the author is no longer comfortable with the book being in print for fear that it may inspire similar occurrence. The book is now completely out of print, as it had already been associated with incidents of high school shootings and hostage takings.
Jeffrey Lyne Cox, a senior at San Gabriel High School in San Gabriel, California, took a semi-automatic rifle to school on April 26, 1988 and held a humanities class of about 60 students hostage for over 30 minutes before being tackled and disarmed by another student. A friend of Cox told the press that Cox had been inspired by the Kuwait Airways Flight 422 hijacking and by the novel Rage, which Cox had read over and over again and with which he strongly identified.
Dustin L. Pierce, a senior at Jackson County High School in McKee, Kentucky, armed himself with a shotgun and two handguns and took an algebra classroom hostage in a nine-hour standoff with police on September 18, 1989 that ended without injury. Police found a copy of Rage among the possessions in Pierce's bedroom, leading to speculation that he had been inspired to carry out the plot of the novel.
Barry Loukaitis, a student at Frontier Middle School in Moses Lake, Washington, walked from his house to the school on February 2, 1996, and entered his algebra classroom during fifth period. He opened fire at students, killing two and wounding another. He then fatally shot his algebra teacher, Leona Caires, in the chest. As his classmates began to panic, Loukaitis reportedly said, "This sure beats algebra, doesn't it?" — a line erroneously believed to be taken from Rage. (No such line appears in King’s story. The closest is when Charlie Decker quips, "This sure beats panty raids.".) Hearing the gunshots, gym coach Jon Lane entered the classroom. Loukaitis was holding his classmates hostage and planned to use one hostage so he could safely exit the school. Lane volunteered as the hostage, and Loukaitis was keeping Lane at gunpoint with his rifle. Lane then grabbed the weapon from Loukaitis and wrestled him to the ground, then assisted the evacuation of students.
On December 1, 1997 Michael Carneal, a senior at Heath High School in Paducah, Kentucky, wrapped a shotgun and a rifle in a blanket and took them to school, passing them off as an art project of his. He also carried a loaded .22 pistol in his backpack. Carneal rode to school with his sister and arrived at approximately 7:45 a.m. When he arrived, he inserted earplugs and took the pistol out of his bag. He fired eight rounds in fast succession at a youth prayer group. Three girls died while hospitalized and five others were wounded. A member of the prayer group, Benjamin Strong, testified that Carneal dropped the gun of his own accord when he was finished. Carneal placed his pistol on the ground and surrendered to the school principal, Bill Bond. After dropping the gun, Carneal said to Strong: "Kill me, please. I can't believe I did that." Following the shooting, Carneal was diagnosed with schizophrenia. A copy of Rage was in Carneal's locker.
"One side of me says, 'I'd like to talk to her, date her'. The other side of me says , 'I wonder how her head would look on a stick?" - Edmund Emil Kemper