Maine massacre among worst mass shootings in modern US history

At least 18 people were killed on Wednesday in the deadliest shooting of 2023.

Video byNam Cho
October 26, 2023, 5:12 PM

One of the deadliest mass shootings in recent United States history unfolded in Maine on Wednesday.

At least 18 people were killed and more than a dozen others injured after a gunman opened fire at two locations in Lewiston: a bowling alley where a children's league was taking place and a local bar, officials said.

PHOTO: A heart shape sign is seen attached to a tree, following a deadly mass shooting in Lewiston, Maine, Oct. 26, 2023.
A heart shape sign is seen attached to a tree, following a deadly mass shooting in Lewiston, Maine, Oct. 26, 2023.
Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

The incident -- the deadliest shooting of the year -- joins the grim ranks of nearly a dozen other mass shootings that have taken place at music festivals, nightclubs and other schools in the past nearly quarter-century in America's unparalleled gun violence epidemic.

These are the mass shootings with the highest death tolls in recent American history, based on an ABC News analysis.

1: Oct. 1, 2017 -- Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas, Nevada

60 deaths

Fifty-eight people were killed and hundreds injured after a gunman opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, targeting concertgoers below at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival. Two victims additionally succumbed to injuries in the years following the massacre. The shooter, Stephen Paddock, killed himself in his hotel suite.

2: June 12, 2016 -- Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida

49 deaths

A gunman opened fire inside the crowded nightclub at around 2 a.m., killing 49 people and wounding dozens. Many of the victims were Latinx and part of the LGBTQ+ community. The shooter -- Omar Mateen, a 29-year-old former security guard -- was killed in a shootout by responding police.

3: April 16, 2007 -- Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia

32 deaths

Twenty-seven students and five professors were killed after Virginia Tech senior Seung-hui Cho, 23, opened fire on the campus in a dorm room and several classrooms. He then turned a gun on himself, dying of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

4: Dec. 14, 2012 -- Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut

26 deaths

Twenty first-graders and six staff members were killed in minutes when 20-year-old Adam Lanza forced his way into the school with a semi-automatic rifle. Lanza also fatally shot his mother at their Newtown home that day and took his own life after the deadliest shooting at an elementary, middle or high school in U.S. history.

5: Nov. 5, 2017 -- First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas

25 deaths

Twenty-five people between the ages of 5 and 72 were killed after a gunman opened fire during a Sunday service, marking the worst mass shooting at a house of worship in the U.S. ever. One of the shooting victims was pregnant. The shooter, Devin Kelley, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound after he was chased and shot by two men.

PHOTO: People gather at a makeshift memorial honoring victims outside Walmart in El Paso, Texas, Aug. 15, 2022.
People gather at a makeshift memorial honoring victims outside Walmart in El Paso, Texas, Aug. 15, 2022.
Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images, FILE

6: Aug. 3, 2019 -- Walmart in El Paso, Texas

23 deaths

Twenty-three people were killed in the shooting rampage, including one victim who died nearly nine months after the incident. The gunman, 25-year-old Patrick Crusius, reportedly told investigators that he set out to kill as many Mexicans as he could. He was sentenced in July to 90 consecutive life sentences after pleading guilty to dozens of federal hate crimes and firearms charges. He is also facing capital murder charges in state court.

7: May 24, 2022 -- Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas

21 deaths

Nineteen children and two teachers were killed after a gunman opened fire with an AR-15-style rifle at Robb Elementary School. The suspect, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, was shot and killed by a responding law enforcement officer. Ramos also shot his grandmother at their home in Uvalde, critically wounding her, before driving to the school, authorities said.

PHOTO: An officer walks outside of Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, May 24, 2022.
An officer walks outside of Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, May 24, 2022.
Allison Dinner/AFP via Getty Images

8. Oct. 25, 2023 -- Just-In-Time Recreation and Schemengees Bar & Grille in Lewiston, Maine

At least 18 deaths

Seven people were killed at Just-In-Time Recreation -- a bowling alley -- and eight people were killed in the billiards room at Schemengees Bar & Grille restaurant in the mass shooting, officials said. An additional three victims died at the hospital and 13 others were injured. The shootings were reported within 12 minutes of each other, police said. A massive manhunt is underway for the suspect, identified as 40-year-old Robert Card, a U.S. Army reservist.

9. Feb. 14, 2018 -- Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida

17 deaths

Fourteen children and three staff members were killed after a gunman brought an AR-15 into the high school. The shooter, Nikolas Cruz, 25, a former student at the school, pleaded guilty to 17 counts of murder and in 2022 was sentenced to life in prison, with the 34 counts of the indictment to be served consecutively.

10: Dec. 2, 2015 -- Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California

14 deaths

Fourteen people were killed and another 21 injured in a terrorist attack at the Inland Regional Center, a facility aimed at providing services for the developmentally disabled. The shooters -- Syed Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik -- both died in a shootout by law enforcement that day.

11: April 3, 2009 -- American Civic Association in Binghamton, New York

13 deaths

Immigrants and staff were among those killed and wounded after 41-year-old Jiverly Wong opened fire at the immigration center. Wong took dozens of students hostage before turning the gun on himself and dying by suicide.

12: April 20, 1999 -- Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado

13 deaths

Twelve students and a teacher died when two students, seniors Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, opened fire at their high school before killing themselves. In the wake of the massacre, active shooter drills became more common at schools.

13. Nov. 5, 2009 -- Fort Hood in Fort Hood, Texas

13 deaths

Twelve soldiers and one civilian were killed and dozens injured when Army psychiatrist Maj. Nidal Hasan opened fire on his fellow soldiers, who were preparing to deploy to Afghanistan, at the Texas Army facility. He is currently on the military's death row after being convicted in what is considered the largest mass shooting at a U.S. military base in history.