Data reveals Orlando killing is deadliest mass shooting in US history
The Orlando massacre is one of 82 mass shootings recorded since 1982.
JOHANNESBURG - A record of mass shootings by an investigative journalism site Mother Jones affirms the murder of 50 people at an Orlando gay nightclub on Sunday night is the deadliest in US history.
The open source database, which has documented a spate of gun crimes between 1982 and 2016, lists 82 public mass shootings across the US, including the Virginia Tech Shooting that left 33 people dead in 2007.
Also mentioned is the Newton shooting in 2012 when 20-year-old Adam Lanza fatally shot 20 children aged between six and seven at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Research conducted by Mother Jones shows that 43 of these crimes have occurred since 2006. Seven of these took place in 2012 alone, signalling a spike in mass shootings.
The report goes into more detail, profiling the killers and the kinds of weapons used and states "of the 143 guns possessed by the killers, more than three quarters were obtained legally."
Map showing major mass killings in the United States.
Meanwhile family and friends of the victims who were killed in Orlando, Florida, are waiting this afternoon to find out whether their loved ones are among the 50 people killed.
The city has begun releasing victims' names on its website.
The gunman, Omar Mateen, a New York-born Florida resident and US citizen was shot and killed by police, who stormed the club with armoured vehicles after the three-hour siege.
Listen: 50 people killed in a gay night club in Orlando, USA, and Isis claims responsibility.