Russian Federal Security Service/Getty

MOSCOW—For the third year in succession, a Russian teenager has done something that Europeans previously believed was the sole preserve of disaffected American students. Danila Monakhov, 18, embarked on a mass shooting in the city of Nizhny Novgorod on Monday, shooting seven people before turning the gun on himself.

Handsome but socially awkward, the teen shooter had watched videos of the Columbine massacre linking him to a Russian social media trend of so-called “Columbiners,” who fetishize the U.S. high school shooting that took the lives of 12 Colorado students and a teacher in 1999. “Both his teachers and school mates knew that Monakhov was preparing for Columbine,” a headline in a local newspaper Moskovsky Komsomolets said on Wednesday.

Monakhov’s classmates described him as a loner. A girl named Maria from his class said he was weak and shy but made comments about mass shootings, and had previously threatened to…

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