LAS VEGAS -- Retired Metro Police Lt. Ted Snodgrass said he has seen a lot of violent situations in his career.
As new information surfaces about the events that lead up to the Connecticut school shooting last week, many are voicing their opinions on what should be done to prevent such horrible tragedies.
Snodgrass suggested that both federal and local government take a closer look at how violent video games, movies and ammunition are sold.
Snodgrass served the Las Vegas community as a member of the Metro Police force for more than two decades.
Now retired, Snodgrass said that watching the coverage of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Friday horrified him.
"Overwhelming feeling of sorrow," he said.
Throughout his years in law enforcement, Snodgrass said he quickly discovered the public's fascination with violence.
He said many times people's interest in aggressive entertainment spills into real life.
"Until you have been in law enforcement, you can't really understand how violent this country really is," he said.
This isn't the first time the nation's attention has been turned to the nature of some violent entertainment.
After other mass shootings, including the 1999 Columbine High School shooting in Littleton, Colo., and the Aurora, Colo., movie theater shooting earlier this year, governments and families took a closer look at violent video games, movies and music.
Snodgrass said if people understood the real feeling behind horrific crimes, things might begin to change.
"If you could be there at some of the scenes that I've been at, just the smells and the feeling of dread that are in those places, you wouldn't find it as entertaining," Snodgrass said.
His solution to slowing down the mass consumption of violent entertainment is to tax it.
"The thing is, if we have this appetite for violence, then we need to make people pay for it," he said.
Similar to a rating system, Snodgrass said he believes entertainment that is violent -- and even weapon ammunition -- should be subject to a tax that is then given to fund mental health facilities.
"We need to be able to identify some of the perpetrators and find them and try to give them help before this happens," he said. "It doesn't do any good to try and help them after words and typically they commit suicide anyways."
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