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Police Hope to ID Victims, Shooter in Newtown Killings Saturday

Connecticut state police say an investigation is underway to piece together what motivated the gunman that killed 20 children, six adults and himself Friday morning.

Update 8:20 a.m., Dec. 15

Newtown police say investigators do not have a motive for the gunman and will not release the shooter's name or the names of the children killed Friday. More information is with new developments from Newtown.

Update 8:08 p.m., Dec. 14

Saying officials will identify all victims in the mass killings at a Newtown elementary school — including the shooter, who took his own life — on Saturday, state police called the day’s shocking events “heart-wrenching.”

No parents have been given access to the inside of Sandy Hook Elementary School, where the bodies of 18 children, six adults and suspected gunman Adam Lanza remain, Lt. J. Paul Vance of the Connecticut State Police said Friday night at a press conference. Two other children died after they were transported to a nearby hospital.

All family members of the deceased have been notified, Vance said.

A press conference is scheduled for 8 a.m. Saturday, Vance said.

Vance spoke in general terms of the investigation into the shooter, whom multiple media outlets have identified as Lanza, citing police sources.

“At this point we are confident that we have the shooter,” Vance said.

All of the shooter’s relatives have been identified and contacted, Vance said. Lanza’s brother had been detained earlier in the day Friday, within hours of the shooting, which started at approximately 9:40 a.m. Their mother has been confirmed among those killed, as has the school’s principal, Dawn Hochsprung.

“I think what we have got to do is … look at all the history,” Vance said of the police investigation. “We will go backwards and hopefully stumble on answers.”

Update 7:10 p.m.

Twenty-year-old Adam Lanza, whose older brother had been detained by police in New Jersey earlier Friday, has been identified as the gunman in Newtown who killed 20 children, six adults and himself, according to the Huffington Post.

Citing multiple media outlets including CNN, the Huffington Post said many media organizations had relied on inaccurate information to report the shooter as Adam Lanza’s brother earlier in the day. As reported by Patch, the brother — Ryan Lanza — now is grieving not only for his brother but also their mother.

David Owens, a Hartford Courant reporter, said during a TV interview that police sources say other people outside of the school may also have been killed by the gunman.

Update 6:15 p.m.

Calling Friday morning’s fatal shootings of 27 people at a Newtown elementary school, including 20 children, “unspeakable” and “tragic,” Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy said during a press conference moments ago that it’s too early to talk about recovery.

“What each parent, each sibling, each member of [affected families] has to understand is that in Connecticut we are all in this together to do whatever we can to overcome this event,” Malloy said. “We will get through it.”

Update 5:11 p.m.

State police confirmed that one person was responsible for the shooting deaths of 20 children and six adults, saying the gunman has been tentatively identified but declining to identify the shooter.

“We will identify the shooter at an appropriate time,” Lt. J. Paul Vance of the Connecticut State Police said during a 5 p.m. press conference Friday. “Just for our investigatory purposes it’s not appropriate right now.”

“We will leave no stone unturned as we are looking at every facet of this investigation,” Vance said, adding that police would hold another briefing around 6 p.m.

Vance confirmed that local, state and federal officials responded to the shocking incident in this normally peaceful southwestern Connecticut town, including an FBI crisis team. Counseling has been made available not only to affected families but also to first responders on scene.

“We provided counseling for the first responders, because this was a very tragic, horrific scene that we encountered,” Vance said.

The gunman shot and killed himself, Vance said.

Update: 3:50 p.m.

The actions of one gunman — 27 lives lost. 

"This is an active ongoing investigation" Connecticut State Police Lt. Paul Vance said at an afternoon press conference Friday, updating the assembled media about the state of the investigation into the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Vance confirmed the death toll: 20 children, 6 adults, including the shooter, and one adult victim at a "secondary scene" in Connecticut.

But in response to multiple questions from press, Vance said at one point: "There are a lot of things we cannot confirm."

He did offer the beginning of a basic timeline, saying the first call came in at around 9:30 a.m.

"Officers immediately entered the school to search for students, faculty and staff and remove them," he said. "They did search every nook and cranny...Those who were rescued were taken to a staging area."

The school is now secure. Two rooms of the school appeared to be the gunman's focus. 

"It is not a simplistic scene," Vance said. "We will be here through the night and through the weekend. We are not putting a time stamp on this process."

The secondary local crime scene may well be this investigation in the Sandy Hook section, the only other known center of police investigation in Newtown right now.

Vance is expected to give another update in about an hour. 

Update: 3:38 p.m.

Patch exclusive: The man identified in media reports Friday as the shooter has told friends that he thinks his developmentally disabled brother may have committed the crime, Patch has learned.

A close friend of Ryan Lanza who would not be identified told Patch that he spoke to Lanza as Lanza made his way home from work to Hoboken. Lanza also took to his Facebook page to rail against CNN naming him as the suspect in the shooting in Newtown, Conn.

_________________________________________________________________________________________

More links to Newtown Patch’s coverage here:

  • Shooting Prompts Religious Leaders to Host Special Prayer Services
  • Reaction: Sandy Hook School Shooting
  • Police Raid Sandy Hook Home Hours After Shooting
  • [PHOTOS] Newtown School Shooting

_________________________________________________________________________________________

“I’m on the bus home now, it wasn’t me,” Lanza wrote.

Lanza’s mother, Nancy, is believed to be among the dead. [Note: Nancy Lanza originally had been reported to be a teacher at the school, but that is not true, according to CNN.]

Patch was among the media outlets to highlight and link to reports naming Ryan Lanza as the alleged shooter. Police haven't yet officially confirmed the identity of the gunman.

Meanwhile President Barack Obama said that parents across the United States will hug their children a little tighter Friday night after the morning’s shocking shooting deaths of elementary school kids in Newtown, and he told the nation that it must “come together.”

During a press conference that ended moments ago, Obama said “our hearts are broken” for those that lost loved ones at Sandy Hook Elementary School during a tragedy whose cause and suspected perpetrators remain unclear.

“Our hearts are broken for the parents of the survivor as well, as blessed as they are to have their children home tonight, they know their children’s innocence has been torn away from them too early,” Obama said.

Update: 3:18 p.m.

Gov. Dannel Malloy is scheduled to hold a press conference at 3:30 p.m. Friday. Malloy, who met with parents, has received an offer of federal assistance from President Obama.

Original story:

Citing sources, the Associated Press is reporting the gunman who rampaged through the Sandy Hook Elementary School was armed with four guns including a high-powered rifle and is believed to have shot and killed up to 30 people including 18 children. The death toll could rise. 

Investigators have identified the gunman “as a man in his 20s from Connecticut and they are searching his father’s home in New Jersey,” according to WABC Channel 7. The hometown was not immediately identified. According to Connecticut State Police spokesman Lt. Paul Vance said the gunman was found dead inside the school.

Friday afternoon distraught parents continued to wait to be reunited with their children. After meeting with parents of the students, Gov. Dannel Malloy is now at the school. Authorities said much information will not be released until the relatives of the victims are notified.

Channel 7 also is reporting the President Obama has telephoned Malloy to express condolences and to offer any federal assistance needed in the investigation of the shooting that was first reported to Newtown Police just before 9:30 a.m. Friday.

A fourth-grade student at Sandy Hook Elementary School said he and his classmates were “locked in a closet in the gym” to escape the gunman. In an interview with Channel 7, the student said, “the police came  and …. We ran to the firehouse.”

Update: 1:25 p.m.

Press conference is still at least an hour away, an official just told Patch.

Update: 1:20 p.m.

The community is in "sheer shock." Read our interviews with Newtown residents as they try to make sense of the violence.

Update: 1:00 p.m.

Citing an anonymous official "with knowledge" the Associated Press is reporting 27 people dead including 18 children at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

The shooter is believed to be a single adult and is now dead.

Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy is in Newtown and a press conference set for 1 p.m. but hasn't yet begun. Patch is there. 

Original Story

Officials in Newtown say they're trying to reunite parents with their children in the wake of a shocking multiple shooting at an elementary school in the town’s Sandy Hook neighborhood.

First Selectman Pat Llodra told Patch that there is no information being released about the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting — only confirming that there was a shooting.

"I'm horrified, saddened and shocked that this happened in Newtown," Llodra said. "Our priorities right now are making sure everyone safe and reuniting parents with their children."

A reverse 911 call went out to all Newtown public school parents, NBC is reporting. Parents are converging all around the school seeking information about their children.

One mother of an 8-year-old girl at the school, Brenda Lebinski, told Patch that her daughter is safe thanks to one teacher's decision to move all kids into a closet when a gunman had entered the building.

Lebinski said that she had spoken to her daughter's teacher as well as a volunteer who was in the school at the time of the shooting, and that a masked gunman had shot adults in the school.

"My daughter's teacher is my hero," Lebinski said. "She locked all the kids in a closet and that saved their lives."

According to Lebinski, the school had been on lockdown but police started leading out children and faculty members by class, and several children had blood on their clothing as they were led out. It isn't clear how many kids are still inside the school. Parents continue to surround the area, seeking news of their children.

Christine Wilford, a parent of a seven-year-old boy at the school, told Patch that her son was out of the school and safe with her husband. A woman standing next to Wilford burst into tears, saying her own son was still inside.

Danbury Hospital has confirmed to TV reporters that three patients have been transported by ambulance.

The Hartford Courant is reporting multiple injured parties, saying a shooter had been in the building’s main office and an individual in one area had “numerous gunshot wounds,” police said.

State police reported shortly after 12 p.m. that officials from the state Medical Examiner's Office were en route to the scene.

At a fire station near the school that's serving as a staging area, a woman was being wheeled on a gurney as a helicopter circled overhead and armed officials from multiple state and federal agencies moved beyond a cordoned-off area swarmed by parents. Dozens of parents could be seen walking to the school as motor vehicle traffic snarled the area of Dickinson Drive.

Marilyn Gudsnuk, 52, of nearby Southbury said she heard 10 to 12 gunshots around 9:40 a.m. Gudsnuk, who attended the elementary school herself as a childhood, said she is taking care of a 91-year-old resident who lives across the street from the school.

"I took off running into the house," she said. "I didn't know what was happening. It was scary."

Asked whether she imagined a shooting could happen at her former school, Gudsnuk said, "Never in a million years."

"I just pray for these people," she said. "The anguish they are going through. And all because someone's not right in the head."

One man who identified himself as a cable worker and declined to give his name, told Patch that he was up on a utility pole at the time of the shooting. When he heard shots, the man said he thought they it was hunters, but then in a few minutes emergency response vehicles sped beneath his ladder.

Newtown Patch will post more information here as it becomes available.

Claire Moses contributed this report.

PaulRevere December 15, 2012 at 08:02 PM
Barb:In agreement with your comments. "prayer" and GOD being removed for our Culture IS the reason for our young children growing up with no "Faith" to turn to. (In time of need) What the local communities must now do is "Seek out the mentally ill" They are the "Ticking mental ARMS" that can Kill using whatever method of their choosing. Society must Call on every Parent to "TURN IN THESE Children-Now" It is not handguns that need to be turned in. Local government should encourage Parents & friends to rid the streets of "mis-guided" individuals. Mass killngs are done by "mentally disturbed" young. Giving them PILLS rather than Faith and a purpose in life will not stop future mass deranged killings. You are 100% right on. A "Faith" in GOD and "Prayer" needs to be put back in schools of "Tax paying" American. Mental illnesses come from losing "faith". It is time for Every Taxpayer supporting our schools to let the majority rule. A return to morals and the Christian laws of society should trump the no GOD no prayer , no Faith mentality being imposed on society. All mass killings could be eliminated if parents did not allow our children to be taught low morals, no GOD, No prayer, NO HOPE! Prayer is necessary to Cultivate the "MIND". THOU SHALT HONOR THY FATHER,MOTHER (not who is my Parent) THOU SHALT NOT KILL THOU SHALT NOT COVET THY neighbor's GOODS (yet we teach to steal from the RICH)Parent's, your Faith in GOD will give you strength. I know, I lost a 19yr old.
Tony December 15, 2012 at 08:21 PM
Gabriella end deborah do you really think that if the teachers would have had firearms this shooting would have been preventet? It takes alot to fire a gun when fired upon. If someone opens a door and start shooting what would your first thought be? Hmm let me see! get down on the floor maybe? Even a SWAT team member need a couple of second to make the right decisions when they have their gun in a holster. should we train all elementaryschool teachers to become SWAT.
PaulRevere December 15, 2012 at 08:22 PM
"There just babies", you say. Were they Killed by a Gun or Killed by a person? Many here are debating that. I wonder if we say a prayer for every "Baby" killed by an abortion clinic. All in our culture of Woman's rights. "innocent young babies" No reflection on you LMStigler, just my sorrow speaking out. Another topic for another Day.
cathie Tomatich December 15, 2012 at 08:34 PM
my thoughts and prayers are not only with the friends and family members of the deceased , but the community as well. Today I have lit 28 candles that will stay going for 28 days one for each life that was taken, and one for the light of God, for they have all entered his kingdom one by one....
j sterling December 15, 2012 at 09:01 PM
I have 4 wonderful little boys they are ages 4 to 10. I can't even began to imagine what those parents are going through. What they was going through yesterday wondering if their babies was ok I'm sure seconds felt like days for all the parents yesterday and today for some get to hold their babies and others suffering cause they never will again. Our hearts and prayers go out to everyone in Newtown from Oklahoma. I wouldn't even know how to explain this senseless to my boys. How do you explain to 5 and 6 year olds that their friends are gone cause of a sorry worthless person in this world. These are babies people. They don't even know things like this happen in life. It's scary to know I can't protect my kids from things like this. It's everywhere. And I have read through this all. There are pros and cons in every agreement. Someone said something along the lines that people that work at schools should have guns it would have stopped sooner well here's something for thought what if someone that is carrying these guns you want to put in our kids school is the next one to snap then we put that in their hands to kill these angles. And no guns will never be logical because let's see ummm meth is illegal and we still can't get it out of our country the only you are doing is leaving law abiding citizens helpless and defenseless. I'm only saying to think things through people.
PaulRevere December 15, 2012 at 09:03 PM
"THE PILL OF PRAYER" is among all at this time. It settles the mind. That is lacking in our teaching of our Young. Would daily prayer help those in "mental anguish"? I say yes. There is no reason to have removed the one thing a Christian society needs to nurture our children into Healthy minds. I pray, also for CT to lead this country in returning "Prayer" back into our Schools. Our children and culture are self-destructing right before your eyes. Mental illnesses can be minimized by having our children learn about the "power of Prayer". I lost a son at age 19. It was sudden (accident). Just like a shooting perpetrated by a "sick mind". It was Prayer that saved my mind. I learned this in school at young age. We will continue to produce "unhealthy Weak sick minds" unless a daily prayer is returned to our schools. Faith, Prayer = Nourishment. Low morals, irresponsibility rewarded by " false-compassion" leads to a corrupt mindset. Many of our children today no longer have a "faith" in Parents or Government. Even Atheists need the Faith in Government to be of sound mind. Our schools have kicked out the invisible real defender of our children--"Prayer" Who would you blame for Mass killings?Guns or "prayer" or Mental illness? I say mental illness.To me, mental illness results from a loss of "FAITH". What faith does not matter.Parent's of lost children prove that Faith in "Prayer" is a necessary ingredient to "mentally" survive. I know that no Psychiatrist Pill works.
Tony December 15, 2012 at 09:25 PM
in london a lot of policemen do not even carry a gun and london is a pretty big city.
DCovey December 15, 2012 at 09:54 PM
First and foremost, we all need to support and pray for the families who lost loved ones in this tragedy. One way in which to respect the parents who lost their children and loved ones, and respect the parents who are expected to send their kids back to Sandy Hook Elementary School, is to re-examine security. 1)To Laura, Your reply of "so what" on the issue that shooters were active at the shooting range located in proximity to the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary is a reply that could be examined by a psychotherapist. a) Reply to "..just fine and the way it needs to be done", why did a perpetrator in possession of a gun gain access inside of Sandy Hook Elementary school? b)Reply to, if I did as you say "do like the rest of us and watch" other children at that school maybe put at risk. 2) Reply to Keith, "you don't live in reality" a) As an individual who hails from a family of detectives, I have two comments ... metal detectors, and coded identification badges. They are utilized at several schools i.e. in eastern Massachusetts towns where the demographics and population are practically identical to that of Newtown, CT. Such security measures help to prevent an unwanted perpetrator from entering a school building with a weapon. a)Reply to Keith’s “people are naturally trusting”, why would there not be security procedures to check each individual who attempts to enter a school who might be carrying a weapon? High Morals can implement tighter security.
Tony December 15, 2012 at 10:52 PM
do not protect yourselves by saying that this happens in other countries aswell. yes it does. finland 1989 2 people and not the shooter 2007 9 people including the shooter 2008 11 people including the shooter. France 2012 3 soldiers and 4 people at the third shooting. and the we have the biggest one in Norway 2011 at Utøya 69 people most teenagers died and atleast 110 injured and same day in oslo 8 dead and atleast 15 injured in the bombing. and to the people that say if people that snap don't have a gun they take a knife do you really think that Anders Behring Breivik would have managed to kill 69 people at that small island with a knife. he used a glock and a semiautomatic rifle (ruger) and a shotgun and he had a licens for all of them. This guy did not snap that day he had planned this shooting and bombing for a long time
Kathy Montgomery December 15, 2012 at 11:17 PM
Thank goodness the school intercom "alerted" everyone something was going on. That absolutely saved more lives from being lost no doubt. Prayers and love from Livermore, CA.
mkmk989@gmail.com December 15, 2012 at 11:29 PM
"If we found anyone that was in the woods cutting wood, they were going to be, they would be detained pending the investigation. So there were no other arrests that were associated with this investigation that occurred." Lt. J. Paul Vance, Media Relations Commander, Connecticut State Police What about this arrest detailed by a witness at the scene (see link below)? Who is he? What is his occupation? Why was he at the school? What did he say while detained? Who issued his "get-out-of-jail-free" card? Why is the media ignoring it? http://bit.ly/W9rNyE Families of the deceased, you are the only ones with the voice and the standing to ask the question. Ask it on live TV so you cannot be edited out. The 20 year old autistic kid didn't kill 26 people in two minutes. Demand that they find out who did.
Kashia December 16, 2012 at 01:20 AM
There is a page on Facebook that is trying to show support to the entire town that was affected by this horrible act. Please, if you have time, take a look. No money is being asked for. f any of you would like to send your kids pictures they drew, or even a Christmas card, there is a group that has contacted the Police Department and gotten the OK to send such things... https://www.facebook.com/ChristmasForNewtown
Ava Ardan December 16, 2012 at 05:45 AM
I don't think this is the right forum for discussion of gun control. I am a 50 year old grandmother and I have been trained how to use fire arms. Regardless of the mental capacity someone firing a gun inside a school should have firearm trained teachers or volunteers. The guy with a knife or worse doesn't usually care if he lives or dies, so he has nothing to lose but the power to end innocent lives. Times have changed. Used to be, good guys carried guns. Now a disturbed individual knows everyone is a sitting duck. As far as those precious, precious children, this grandma would have died for you if necessary for your defense. We got to live a life. If you think the bad boys will be controlled by a law to reduce the number of guns--you got it wrong. We praise our heroes, our soldiers who risk their lives to protect ours, why do you call people who want to protect here at home--nuts? Why we can't we change with the times? The bad guys got to know our kids are not defenseless little lambs--because the adults are going to protect them. Got bless those babies, God bless those families,, and the teachers and principals! God bless America!
Tammy Bailey December 16, 2012 at 02:56 PM
I must say gun control isn't the only problem. I believe that if a person has to have a psychological evaluation to have gastric bypass surgery maybe you should have to undergo one to own a gun. Taking guns from everyone isn't the answer a those that are evil will still find away to do evil. In China on the same day where guns aren't allowed 10 or more children were stabbed at an elementary school. The media makes the shooter a household name, makes him a superstar instead of him being a pathetic nobody. How many of you remember a single victims name from Columbine? And not Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold. Turn off your tv and forget this idiots name and remember these poor lil children and donate money to these families and to mental health and lets not gripe about gun control.
Robin Lionheart December 16, 2012 at 06:48 PM
Connecticut has stronger gun control laws than most states. You need a permit to buy a handgun, and getting one involves a background check, a two week waiting period, and a safety course. It didn't help in this case because Lanza killed his mother with her own gun and then went on his shooting spree. But he would have faced some obstacles to obtaining a gun of his own.
Robin Lionheart December 16, 2012 at 07:16 PM
Prayer is not an "invisible real defender of our children". It's an invisible imaginary ineffective defender of our children. The worst school mass murder in US history killed 38 elementary school children, two teachers, four other adults, and the perpetrator. That was at the Bath Consolidated School in Bath Township, Michigan, on May 18, 1927. They had prayer in school then, but God did absolutely nothing to prevent that slaughter.
Shelly Uscinski December 16, 2012 at 08:44 PM
My heart breaks for those in Newtown who are suffering. My prayer is for a real revival in this nation, where God and prayer are again allowed in our public schools. In is awfully sad to say but this is the ultimate evil that occurs when God is no longer allowed in our schools, and only Satan has free reign. 50 years folks, ...50 years. When are we going to wake up? Jesus is the ONLY answer.
Mrs H December 17, 2012 at 12:01 AM
I live in Staffordshire, UK and I just wanted to say that people here are heartbroken for all of the people of Newtown. I'm sending my family's love to all the families of this devastated village; my heart, and the hearts of my husband and daughter, break with yours. I pray one day you can remember those innocent souls lost with laughter instead of tears. I hope one day that your pain no longer makes you physically hurt. I wish one day that you all find again the peace you've so tragically lost. God bless you all.
Mrs H December 17, 2012 at 12:07 AM
@Shelly Uscinski - I too am a christian, but I really don't think this is the right time or the right place to start preaching about religion in schools. This is not about God; this is about a deranged person carrying out an horrendous crime that has devastated a town, and robbed a lot of families of their much beloved children and their teachers. Just send the people of Newtown love and prayers and keep the rest to yourself, PLEASE.
Pam J December 17, 2012 at 01:20 AM
Mrs. H, I agree. If this had happened at a Christian school, we would not be talking about putting religion back in schools. Religion should be taught at home and at church. Even though I am a Christian, I don't think it should be taught in school. If the children are learning enough through their families and churches, that should be enough. And, unfortunately, some Christians actually kill people. It's that little part of your brain that misfires that is the problem.
heather miranda December 17, 2012 at 03:48 AM
My heart goes out to ALP the families that lost their loved ones on Fri Dec 14th for that will now be a day no one will ever forget my husband and I will be sending letters and cards to the school from ourselves and my hisbands job u all are in our prayers each and every night from this day forward
Mrs H December 17, 2012 at 02:38 PM
Pam J; it's nice to meet a like-minded person. I'm often considered too religious by my atheist friends or not religious enough by my religious friends - I tend to exist in a no man's land of my own making I think. Howwever, I do honestly believe that at this time we should be concentrating on the town and the families that have been affected so tragically by this horrendous tragedy, rather than point scoring for our own views and opinions. I think religion is not relevant right now; helping the devastated people of Newtown is. It shouldn't matter what our nationality, race, creed, colour, religion or anything else is - what should matter is one human being reaching out in comfort and support to another. God knows I've cried my own tears at this and given my own 15 year old daughter more than a few extra hugs - because, I truly believe, you never know what each day will bring. I believe that, but for the grace of God or fate (depending on your viewpoint), I could be walking in the same shoes as these poor parents. The UK isn't immune to child massacres; so I don't want religious arguments or gun law arguments to detract from helping the people of this town to find some way to heal......eventually. I hope, however, that I haven't offended anyone as that wasn't my intent.
Breanne Rushing December 17, 2012 at 08:50 PM
All of our hearts, thoughts, and prayers go out to the community of Newtown, Connecticut. Nothing but time can heal so great and so deep a wound, but I promise you that there is hope. There is hope in the children who now carry the spirits of their friends within their hearts, and will one day, with God’s will, come to emulate the heroes that they met today. Someday they will become the first responders, doctors, and especially teachers that protected and guided them today, and they will themselves become beacons of light. And although all of them will carry the scars of this day with them forever, we can only hope and pray that some good will rise from the ashes of this unspeakable tragedy, and that surviving this evil will only have succeeded in making them stronger. But for now, I want all of the families affected to know that you are not alone. That you are right now receiving the love and condolences of an entire nation, and hopefully we can somehow help give you the strength to endure the next days, weeks, and years. And please know that as long as we stand together in the face of darkness like this, those who seek to spread it can NOT and will NEVER win. As long as we allow such tragedy to unite us instead of driving us apart, as communities, as a nation, and as people, there will ALWAYS be hope. God bless all of you.
Barb Eiken December 18, 2012 at 10:00 PM
From the small community of Mabel Minnesota we send our love and prayers. Our hearts ache and our arms feel empty for you. How does a person move on without doing something to try to make this better? We will pray and pray and pray....that's all I know to do.
snorkel December 19, 2012 at 07:12 PM
Locked doors at the schools are useless when standard glass is used all around the door. All the glass needs to be replaced with bullet/shatter proof glass ASAP in all Schools. The murderer simply shattered the glass and walked right in.
Barbara Field December 20, 2012 at 04:19 AM
I worked for Duracell back in the 80's at Exit 8. I needed a card to swipe beside the steel doors to enter the building. Not sure what cost that involved but perhaps that would be possible to replace the glass doors, should everyone decide that we will not be beaten by one disturbed person's madness. It's shameful that we have to be concerned for children's safety- abducted from their own yards and homes, to malls, to movie theaters, to post offices that have all seen acts of violence no matter where we live or work. I understand that guns can cause more harm in a few seconds that other items. But I also understand that across the U.S. there are probably hundreds of people raised around guns, learned how to use them properly and legally and they aren't the ones causing the terror. Isn't is always someone with some form of mental illness,or a lack of control of their emotions. We will never be able to predict who and where they are on any given day? Anyone can learn how to cause great physical harm to others from the internet. How will we legislate control of that? All we can do now is find responsible ways to improve upon the security already in place and pray that families struggling with mental health issues will find the help needed. Let's honor the memories of those that were lost at the school by respecting one another no matter where you live or what you own. Newtown strong.
Savannah Crawmer December 20, 2012 at 04:44 AM
Please guys, this was a tragedy! A horrible massacre! But it's one of those things where there is not any reasonable resolution to this gun issue. Taking them away would strip people of their number one defense! Concealed gun control is a good rule and it should stay that way folks! Praying for everyone tonight! May they enjoy Christmas in Christ's arms. :(.
Prayers Forall December 22, 2012 at 10:18 AM
To all who only stated that prayers went out to the victims and families, you are true angels. You did not pretend to have the answer to the problem Or did you? Prayers from someone who cares about how everyone is affected by this tragedy.
Jane Sims December 26, 2012 at 05:35 PM
My payers go out to all involved. Our nation does indeed need to look carefully at all reasons our country has become so violent. We do not want a society that has veryone carrying around concealed guns everywhere. We need SENSIBLE gun laws withour any loopholes, stringent repercussions, and honest talk by gun owners and non-gun owners concerning assault rifles and magazines that hold more than 10 bullets. We also need a fair discussion of violent video games and movies and more availability for mental health needs in every state. The disparity of our states and national organizations is enormous in respect to laws, monies, and willingness to talk on all of these subjects . We must TALK, LISTEN, and ACT. Our country is more violent than any other democratic civilized country in the world. WAKE UP all citizens and legislators and put your voice and money where it will help the future of our children and of all of us.
Alan Burnside February 01, 2013 at 12:47 AM
From Dec 14 - Dec 26 there were 536 comments by Patch readers on the killings at Sandy Hook Elem School. A lot of emotion, a lot of angst, a lot of anger, a lot of misinformation. I have found that gun supporters still insist on fighting a hypothetical argument in favor of assault weapons, and insist on mischaracterizing the argument in favor of stricter enforcement of existing or new legislation,as some imagined assault on 2nd amend. rights. As the father (David Wheeler) of one of the slain boy's eloquently said yesterday: "my 6 years old right to life supercedes your right to own an assault weapon". The gun lobby cynically waits until the fervor dies down and people return to the norm. We MUST stay motivated. In my mind the argument is over. The debate is over. No more discussion.We must simply move on past the gun lobby's unconscionable obstructionism. We must support President Obama and VP Biden's checklist, which WILL NOT eliminate mass killings, but surely will save some lives. And then, we must keep our efforts local. We need not look any further than our own embarrassing House member, Dana Rohrbacher, who is a longterm member of the ultra-right Gun Owners of America (GOA), which condemns the NRA for being too soft on gun laws. We need to organize and start the process of change AT HOME. Get Rohrbacher OUT. Orange County is no longer the repository of hard-core Right thinking. It's time we flex our electoral muscle and move on. Rohrbacher GOES next time.

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