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27 Killed In Connecticut Elementary School Shooting

By: ABC News / Associated Press
By: ABC News / Associated Press

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UPDATE: Friday, December 14, 2012, 7:30 p.m.

Twenty children died today when a heavily armed man invaded a Newtown, Conn., elementary school and sprayed staff and students with bullets.

The gunman, identified as Adam Lanza, 20, was found dead in the school.

Lt. Paul Vance said 18 children died in the school and two more died later in a hospital. Six adults were also slain, bringing the total to 26.

In addition to the casualties at the school, Lanza's mother Nancy Lanza was killed in her home, federal and state sources told ABC News.

According to sources, Lanza shot his mother in the face, then left his house armed with at least two semi automatic handguns, a Glock and a Sig Sauer, and a semi automatic rifle. He was also wearing a bullet proof vest.

Lanza drove to Sandy Hook Elementary School and continued his rampage, killing 26 people, authorities said. He was found dead at the school. It appears that he died from what is believed to be a self inflicted gunshot wound. The rifle was found in his car.

In the early confusion surrounding the investigation, federal sources initially identified the suspect as Adam's older brother Ryan Lanza, 24. He is being questioned by police.

"Evil visited this community today," Gov. Dan Malloy said at a news conference this evening.

First grade teacher Kaitlin Roig, 29, locked her 14 students in a class bathroom and listened to "tons of shooting" until police came to help.

"It was horrific," Roig said. "I thought we were going to die."

She said that the terrified kids were saying, "I just want Christmas…I don't want to die. I just want to have Christmas."

A tearful President Obama said there's "not a parent in America who doesn't feel the overwhelming grief that I do."

The president had to pause to compose himself after saying these were "beautiful little kids between the ages of 5 and 10." As he continued with his statement, Obama wiped away tears from each eye.

He has ordered flags flown as half staff.

The alert at the school ended when Vance announced, "The shooter is deceased inside the building. The public is not in danger."

The massacre prompted the town of Newtown to lock down all its schools and draw SWAT teams to the school, authorities said today. Authorities initially believed that there were two gunmen and were searching cars around the school, but authorities do not appear to be looking for another gunman.

It is the second worst mass shooting in U.S. history, exceeded only by the Virginia Tech shooting in 2007 when 32 were killed before the shooter turned the gun on himself. Today's carnage exceeds the 1999 Columbine High School shooting in which 13 died and 24 were injured.

The Newtown shooting comes three days after masked gunman Jacob Roberts opened fire in a busy Oregon mall, killing two before turning the gun on himself.

Today's shooting occurred at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, which includes 450 students in grades K-4. The town is located about 12 miles east of Danbury.

State Police received the first 911 call at 9:41 a.m. and immediately began sending emergency units from the western part of the state. Initial 911 calls stated that multiple students were trapped in a classroom, possibly with a gunman, according to a Connecticut State Police source.

Lt. Paul Vance said that on-duty and off-duty officers swarmed to the school and quickly checked "every door, every crack, every crevice" in the building looking for the gunman and evacuating children.

A photo from the scene shows a line of distressed children being led out of the school.

Three patients have been taken to Danbury Hospital, which is also on lockdown, according to the hospital's Facebook page.

Out of abundance of caution and not because of any direct threat Danbury Hospital is under lockdown," the statement said. "This allows us simply to focus on the important work at hand."

Newtown Public School District secretary of superintendent Kathy June said in a statement that the district's schools were locked down because of the report of a shooting. "The district is taking preventive measures by putting all schools in lockdown until we ensure the safety of all students and staff," she said.

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State police sent SWAT team units to Newtown.

All public and private schools in the town were on lockdown.

"We have increased our police presence at all Danbury Public Schools due to the events in Newtown. Pray for the victims," Newtown Mayor Boughton tweeted.

State emergency management officials said ambulances and other units were also en route and staging near the school.

A message on the school district website says that all afternoon kindergarten is cancelled today and there will be no midday bus runs.

UPDATE: Friday, December 14, 2012, 3:20 p.m.

A law enforcement official says the suspect in the Connecticut school shootings is 20-year-old Adam Lanza, the son of a teacher at the school where the shootings occurred. A second law enforcement official says the boy's mother, Nancy Lanza, is presumed dead.

The first official says Adam Lanza's older brother, 24-year-old Ryan, of Hoboken, N.J., is being questioned by police. An earlier report from a law enforcement official mistakenly transposed the brothers' first names.

Both officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak on the record about the developing criminal investigation.

The first official said Adam Lanza is dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.



UPDATE: Friday, December 14, 2012, 3 p.m.

Police say 27 people were killed in the shooting at a Connecticut elementary school, including the gunman, and one person died at another scene.

The dead at the school include 18 children.

The gunman opened fire Friday morning inside a school where his mother worked. He blasted his way through the building as young students cowered helplessly in classrooms while their teachers and classmates were shot.

The gunman killed himself. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy says someone who lived with him also died.

Young students crying and looking frightened were escorted by adults through a parking lot in a line after the shots rang out in Newtown, 60 miles northeast of New York City.

The attack comes less than two weeks before Christmas and appears to be the nation's second-deadliest school shooting, exceeded only by the Virginia Tech massacre in 2007.



UPDATE: Friday, December 14, 2012, 2:25 p.m.

More information is emerging about the suspect in today's Connecticut elementary school shootings. A law enforcement official identifies him as 24-year-old Ryan Lanza.

Another official who was briefed on the shooting says the gunman died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound -- and that one of the victims was the shooter's mother, a teacher at the school.

According to one official, the suspect's younger brother is being held for questioning as a possible second shooter.

The official also says Ryan Lanza's girlfriend and another friend are missing in New Jersey.

Although authorities haven't released the number of dead and injured, an official says 26 people were killed, including 18 children, in addition to the gunman. That would make the shooting the nation's second-deadliest at a school -- exceeded only by the Virginia tech massacre in 2007.

Students are telling parents about their ordeal this morning. One 6-year-old has told his father that he was in a classroom when a gunman burst in and shot the teacher. The boy said he grabbed some of his friends and ran from the room.



UPDATE: Friday, December 14, 2012, 2 p.m.

More than two dozen people, mostly children, were shot and killed at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school this morning by a heavily armed man who was killed inside the building, federal and state sources tell ABC News.

"The shooter is deceased inside the building," Connecticut State Police spokesman Lt. Paul Vance said at a news conference. "The public is not in danger."

The gunman has been identified as Ryan Lanza, 24, of New Jersey. A dead body has also been found in his home, officials said. Sources said Lanza was armed with four weapons and wearing a bullet-proof vest when he opened fire in the elementary school.

Among the dead was the gunman's mother, found in the school, sources told ABC News.



Friday, December 14, 2012

An official with knowledge of a shooting at a Connecticut elementary school says 27 people are dead, including 18 children.

A law enforcement official says the attacker in the Connecticut school shootings is a 20-year-old man with ties to the school.

The official said that a gun used in the attacks is a .223-caliber rifle. The official also said that New Jersey state police are searching a location in that state in connection with the shootings, said by an official in Connecticut to have left 27 dead, including 18 children.

The official in Washington spoke on the condition of anonymity because the source was not authorized to speak on the record about the developing criminal investigation.

A shooting involving two gunmen erupted at a Connecticut school this morning, prompting the town of Newtown to lock down all of its schools and draw SWAT teams to the school, authorities said today.

State Police confirm that one shooter is dead. A second gunman is apparently at large. Car-to-car searches are underway.

The shooting comes just three days after masked gunman Jacob Roberts opened fire in a busy Portland, Ore., mall killing two before turning the gun on himself.

Today's shooting occurred at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, about 12 miles east of Danbury.

State Police received the first 911 call at 9:41a.m. and immediately began sending emergency units from the western part of the state. Initial 911 calls stated that multiple students were trapped in a classroom, possibly with a gunman, according to a Connecticut State Police source.

While some students have been reunited with their parents on the school's perimeter, one group of students remains unaccounted for, according to a source with a child in the school.

"Out of abundance of caution and not because of any direct threat Danbury Hospital is under lockdown," the statement said. "This allows us simply to focus on the important work at hand."

Newtown Public School District secretary of superintendent Kathy June said in a statement that the district's school were locked down because of the report of a shooting. "The district is taking preventive measures by putting all schools in lockdown until we ensure the safety of all students and staff."

State police sent SWAT team units to Newtown.

All public and private schools in the town are on lockdown.

"We have increased our police presence at all Danbury Public Schools due to the events in Newtown. Pray for the victims," Newtown Mayor Boughton tweeted.

State emergency management officials said ambulances and other units were also en route and staging near the school.

A message on the school district website says that all afternoon kindergarten is cancelled today and there will be no mid-day bus runs.


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