BALTIMORE (WJZ) –Why does this keep happening? The question is on many minds after the Texas school shooting that killed at least 19 children and two teachers. 

The emotional toll is being more than 1,700 miles away in Maryland.

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“It’s not lost on me that my daughter jumped on my bed this morning and told me she loved me. There are 20 parents in Texas who had that joy stolen from them,” said Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski, his voice breaking. “…No parent should have to experience that. So, our hearts are heavy today.”

The pain is familiar and has been for decades.

One of the deadliest school shootings in the nation was a little more than 60 miles from Baltimore in 2006 at an Amish schoolhouse in Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania. Ten girls were shot and five of them died; the youngest was just seven years old.

In 2018, a student at Great Mills High School in southern Maryland killed himself, wounded a 14-year-old boy and killed a 16-year-old girl.

Johns Hopkins’ Josh Horwitz researches ways to prevent these tragedies. He’s advocating for violence prevention programs, limits on high-capacity magazines and permits for gun ownership nationwide.

“We are scared to send our kids to school and that needs to drive us to make a difference to make a change in policy,” he told WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren. “There are solutions. We don’t have to accept this, but over and over again we do.”

Congress has failed to pass nearly 20 gun control measures in the decade since Sandy Hook when 26 were killed.

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Some say the answer is not gun control but doing more to address mental health issues. 

“It doesn’t work. It’s not effective. It doesn’t prevent crime,” Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) said following the Uvalde massacre. “We know what does prevent crime is going after felons, fugitives and those with serious mental illness.”

In the past five years, two workplace mass shootings terrorized Harford County.

In June 2018, a gunman killed five people in the Annapolis Capital Gazette newsroom.

A new FBI report reveals a spike in active shooter incidents last year. There were 61, almost double the 31 in 2017.

Earlier this month, nine people were shot in two mass shootings in Baltimore just hours apart.

Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Violence Prevention and Policy continues to gather information on these mass shootings as they look for solutions.

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“If the American people are silent, Congress will continue to act the way they do,” Horwitz said.