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Sandy Hook Report Released, But Still No Motive for Shooting

Many details are released, but the explanation for the shooting remains as elusive as it has been for the past year.

In the state's final report on the Dec. 14 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, released Monday, State's Attorney Stephen Sedensky says no motive may ever be found for what led to the deaths of 20 children and six educators.

Titled "Report of the State’s Attorney for the Judicial District of Danbury on the Shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School and 36 Yogananda Street, Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, 2012," the 44-page document covers police response for both sites, autopsy results, a timeline and information on the shooter, gleaned from scores of interviews.

Investigators note that a computer hard drive recovered from Lanza's home has yet proven unreadable.

"He had a familiarity with and access to firearms and ammunition and an obsession with mass murders, in particular the April 1999 shootings at Columbine High School in Colorado," the report said. 

The report also states that Lanza acted alone, and no evidence exists that Lanza had taken behavior-altering medications that would explain his actions.

An attached appendix includes ballistics descriptions, photographs and floor plans of Sandy Hook Elementary School and 36 Yogananda. 

But the report does not contain "thousands" of pages of police documents concerning the shooting. The full report is being redacted and will be available "before the anniversary of this tragedy," according to the Connecticut Department of Criminal Justice.

"It is not the intent of this report to convey every piece of information contained in the voluminous investigation materials developed by the Connecticut State Police and other law enforcement agencies, but to provide information relevant to the purposes of this report," Sedensky writes in the introduction.

With the issuance of the report, Sedensky concludes, the investigation into the shooting is now closed. But the question of why Lanza committed the acts may never be answered, he says.

"The obvious question that remains is: 'Why did the shooter murder twenty-seven people, including twenty children?'" Sedensky writes. "Unfortunately, that question may never be answered conclusively, despite the collection of extensive background information on the shooter through a multitude of interviews and other sources. The evidence clearly shows that the shooter planned his actions, including the taking of his own life, but there is no clear indication why he did so, or why he targeted Sandy Hook Elementary School."

The shooting took place over less than 11 minutes, the report shows.

"We Cannot Make Sense of Why It Happened"

Sedensky and state police reportedly met with victims' families last week to provide them with details from the report. First Selectman Pat Llodra told Patch she had not seen the report prior to its release, nor did she want to.

"Yes, we have read the report," wrote Donna Soto, mother of victim Victoria Soto, on her Facebook page Monday. "No, we cannot make sense of why it happened, we don't know if anyone ever will. We don't know if we will ever be whole again, we don't know if we will go a day without pain, we don't know if anything will ever make sense again."

Soto described the report as another blow to the family, one that did not answer any of their questions.

"While others search for the answer as to why this happened, we search for the how," she wrote. "How can we live without Vicki? How do we celebrate Christmas without Vicki? How do we go on every day missing a piece of our family? Those are the questions we seek the answers for. There is nothing in the report that will answer those for us."

"Longer Than Any Of Us Would Have Liked"

Many elected Connecticut officials, including Gov. Dannel Malloy, had questioned the slow response time of the report, coming nearly a year after the shooting. Sedensky was silent on the delay even as some details from the report began leaking to the press.

In May, Malloy originally called for patience as some legislators began demanding the report. But by November, he said his "statements have changed," telling reporters the report could help to bolster school security statewide.

"This has gone on longer than any of us would have liked and certainly is not representative of how I would have handled the timing of this report," Malloy told reporters in Farmington earlier this week. "It needs to get out. It needs to get out this week, next week. It needs to get out."

As state officials were crafting the report, details leaked to some outlets, including the Hartford Courant and The New York Post. In March, the Post ran details from a speech by Col. Danny Stebbins detailing a "sickeningly thorough … spreadsheet" made by the shooter prior to the shooting, along with other information about the shooter's home life and history.

Information obtained by the Hartford Courant in October apparently revealed details about what happened in Sandy Hook Elementary School during and after the shooting, including the fact that first-grader Jesse Lewis apparently yelled for other students to run for safety during the shooting.

In the report itself, Sendesky repeatedly notes the time required for accurate information-gathering during the investigation, saying police followed 40 unsubstantiated "leads" that came from the public.

COSMO P November 26, 2013 at 09:54 PM
@ Jeanan Gerber . Ok tell me what sensible gun laws are??? The laws that CT just bestowed on honest gun owners is far from sensible. It is OPPRESSIVE lets use the correct terminology. By the way there has never been a gun law to date that stopped crime with a firearm. So explain your theory what is sensible gun laws. By the way semi auto guns would include 95% of every gun made. So you are not talking sensible laws you are talking confiscation and a total ban. Lets be honest you gun haters do not have a clue and want every gun banned case closed. You shroud you hatred for guns by cloaking it with sensible gun law garbage when deep down you want every gun pounded in to anvils. You progressives beat all you know that!!
COSMO P November 26, 2013 at 09:59 PM
HELLOW !!!!! Adam lances mother was a NUT JOB plain and simple she allowed he crazy son access to guns and she paid the price . She was the one responsible for the innocent children that were victoms of her kid. Plain and simple ADAM should have been institutionalized years ago and locked up and the key thrown away. But some do not like that that is why they walk the streets and sometimes they snap. Adam was clearly nuts and the signs were all over the place. So anyone that turned there shoulders on this kid and his mother were equally involved. STOP BLAMING GUNS!!!
JED November 26, 2013 at 10:00 PM
You are so entertaining, Cosmo, and narrowly focused. Show me where the Constitution says "any" gun manufactured in man's wildest dream of destruction over centuries is sanctioned and approved.
LittleTalks November 27, 2013 at 03:42 AM
So Judy, you would have felt better if Adam used a different gun?
COSMO P November 27, 2013 at 04:28 AM
The NFA act limits calibers of 50 and under . OR DIDN'T YOU KNOW THAT??? I love the progressive know nothings when they talk gun NONSENSE. Do you make this stuff up as you go. Keep it coming i am having a good laugh over you blatant lack of gun laws and knowledge!!
COSMO P November 27, 2013 at 04:30 AM
The Supreme court ruled in your wildest dreams JUDY that ownership of guns is an individual right. Guess you did not know that either???
Evan Frye November 27, 2013 at 11:53 AM
HEY JUDY, where does it say that they aren't approved?
Alex S November 27, 2013 at 12:58 PM
@Judy, so if someone uses a deer rifle, designed for hunting deer, to kill a human, should deer rifles then be banned? Are deer rifles in The Constitution, or is it only guns designed for killing humans in The Constitution? (Yes, this is a loaded question, so think about your answer before you blindly reply.)
COSMO P November 27, 2013 at 03:10 PM
Alex she is a GUN GRABBER every GUN is EVIL TO HER and should be banned according to the progressives . .
COSMO P November 27, 2013 at 03:38 PM
Here you go Donna D a cheap 50 for sale . Now it is an NFA gun. So once again your post is factually incorrect. Now this gun is a cheap one the good ones cost app 30-50K.............................. Barrett M107A1 20" CQ 50 BMG Guncrafter 50GI Nightforce ATACR 5-25x56 ZeroStop .25MOA. MOAR $16,799.98
COSMO P November 27, 2013 at 03:44 PM
Here you go a GOOD ONE DONNA care to buy a pair just for kicks....................... This is made by Winchester, it is a 1918 A2 overstamp and in more than excellent condition, caliber 30-06, very impressive specimen, from private Estate collection on Form #4. Price : $ 35,000.00
ROYSTOLL2 November 27, 2013 at 04:25 PM
It is frustrating when people refuse to realize how much these ultra-violent video games and movies play in peoples actions when they commit these violent crimes. It is a fact that about 2% of any given population group in the United States demonstrates psychotic tendencies enough to cause harm to themselves or others. These two factors alone can create a dangerous situation. It is easy to blame it on the availability of guns but that is really not the problem. I would really like to see all schools especially elementary have some kind of an armed guard presence to deter even thoughts of this. This is the saddest thing that has ever happened and it is beyond comprehension. The Russians had this happen when terrorist attacked one of their schools. Please accept my condolences.
Thomas Paine November 27, 2013 at 05:37 PM
Here's my opinion on why the instinctive reaction of so many to such tragedies is to call for gun bans - they believe that removing the implement removes the potential for such carnage in the future, because there are too many similarities between the Lanza's of the world and other kids. I have said before and say it again, violent video games can be found in more Fairfield County households than most care to think. Violent movies are in our cineplexes year-round, but especially in summer. Misogynist and gangsta music is consumed across the traditional socio-economic-race spectrum. Youtube, Vine and other sharing media bring to any capable device all of the "knockout game" and similar idiotic acts of violence for anyone to consume, and laugh at. Our kids, especially our young boys and men, are no longer repulsed from senseless violence and, in the case of "body count equals status" games, makes seeking maximum mayhem a goal. Then we have ADHD, ADD and the easy application of psychotropic drugs as a panacea to "problem boys" in a society that sees boys as defective girls more than their being different. Now add to this dysfunctional families, divorce, absentee fathers, placating mothers and some being outcasts and we can see that Lanza is not isolated because such things are all around us. IMO, this is WHY the good folks at CAGV, March for Change, et. al. regularly ignore the mental health and societal aspects of rampage violence - because the "causes" or at least the factors common to all such killers, are pervasive and all around us. So since there is no "easy fix" for the factors in our society that create such killers, they go after the implements, irrespective of the history on such efforts being of little to no preventative value.
JED November 27, 2013 at 06:05 PM
Holy Cow, Thomas - I totally agree with you and you expressed it beautifully!
L.A. November 27, 2013 at 06:05 PM
LittleTalks.....you shouldn't talk at all.
Thomas Paine November 27, 2013 at 10:22 PM
Judy - Now sure about the beauty but we are living in a society that wants to control everything, both those who govern and the governed. We want to take the risks out of living which explains the increasing levels of regulation, litigation and the general removal of "risks" from our everyday existences. However, taking away the implements seems easy but, as I have argued on these pages for nearly a year, when there is a will, there is a way. The one thing about the summary report is that it showed Lanza to be calculating and disciplined, even if psychopathic. This attack was a long time in planning and was not a matter of a mentally unstable person "snapping" with no signs of danger. Unlike many, I hold no charity for Mrs. Lanza who ignored all of the building signs that something was very wrong with her kid. As for those who would focus on the firearms and not the killers, they are AFRAID that similar influences could be creating the next killer in their town, in their neighborhood, on their street, possible, even, in their own homes. What these people are doing in trying to disarm the legal and law-abiding gun owners is do through projection what they can not do in real-life, prevent the next senseless attack. To these gun takers, they have to convince themselves that every gun owner is a "gun death event" waiting to happen because, if they do not, then they have to face that rampage killers are very unique, very disturbed, made-not-born, and could be near by. The use of derogatory comments (gun goon, gun fetishists, NRA minions) are ways to both throw every gun owners into the same pool as well as dehumanize gun owners. Very similar tactics were used against the Jews in the 1930s - demonize, dehumanize, disarm, attack and, eliminate. This projection of their own fears also helps explain the ridiculous "zero tolerance" policies in our schools because the gun takers actually believe that chewing a poptart into a pistol shape or pointing a finger and saying "bang" are somehow precursors to development of future rampage killers. Neither is true because 5, 6, and 7 year olds are too young to be walking toward the dark side, that does not occur until the early teens and the onset of puberty. Yet these same people probably ignore the fact that their kids and kids they know are racking up massive body counts in CoD and other shooting games every evening. Seems a poptart gun is evil but Junior shooting a pixelated man's head off with a Barrett 50 cal is "just a game". >>>> And Judy, I am not alone in making these observations. Consider that at the CAGV Conference in September, members of Sandy Hook Promise took CAGV and March for Change to task for focusing too much on the guns and not enough on mental health issues in rampage shootings. Those comments, as well as those reminding the assembled CAGV supporters that inner city black males die every week with little outrage from the burbs, were met with enthusiastic applause form the attendees. Sometimes the obvious is obvious to all, expect those who choose not to see it. Happy Thanksgiving!
Thomas Paine November 28, 2013 at 11:30 AM
Judy - Note that the two comments I posted above have been deleted, either by Davis as the author or as a consequence of two or three readers (or a single person with multiple log-in names) flagging my comments as "Inappropriate". I do NOT think it was Davis as he has been a stand-up guy in my prior dealings with him. Instead, my words were likely too much for some to consider as it runs against the narrative of some of the "gun takers". Thus, since they prefer to avoid debate, they seek to silence voices that they do not want to hear in this type of forum. Davis, if you feel so inclined, I believe you can reinstate the comments if they were automatically removed by "Flag as Inappropriate".
JED November 28, 2013 at 12:01 PM
Not ME! While I may disagree with someone's opinion, I do agree with their right to voice their opinion.
JED November 28, 2013 at 12:05 PM
Via Thomas Paine and I think this is a very thoughtful post and fortunately I did not delete it. "Here's my opinion on why the instinctive reaction of so many to such tragedies is to call for gun bans - they believe that removing the implement removes the potential for such carnage in the future, because there are too many similarities between the Lanza's of the world and other kids. I have said before and say it again, violent video games can be found in more Fairfield County households than most care to think. Violent movies are in our cineplexes year-round, but especially in summer. Misogynist and gangsta music is consumed across the traditional socio-economic-race spectrum. Youtube, Vine and other sharing media bring to any capable device all of the "knockout game" and similar idiotic acts of violence for anyone to consume, and laugh at. Our kids, especially our young boys and men, are no longer repulsed from senseless violence and, in the case of "body count equals status" games, makes seeking maximum mayhem a goal. Then we have ADHD, ADD and the easy application of psychotropic drugs as a panacea to "problem boys" in a society that sees boys as defective girls more than their being different. Now add to this dysfunctional families, divorce, absentee fathers, placating mothers and some being outcasts and we can see that Lanza is not isolated because such things are all around us. IMO, this is WHY the good folks at CAGV, March for Change, et. al. regularly ignore the mental health and societal aspects of rampage violence - because the "causes" or at least the factors common to all such killers, are pervasive and all around us. So since there is no "easy fix" for the factors in our society that create such killers, they go after the implements, irrespective of the history on such efforts being of little to no preventative value. "
Alex S November 28, 2013 at 01:15 PM
Also here: ................ Here's my opinion on why the instinctive reaction of so many to such tragedies is to call for gun bans - they believe that removing the implement removes the potential for such carnage in the future, because there are too many similarities between the Lanza's of the world and other kids. I have said before and say it again, violent video games can be found in more Fairfield County households than most care to think. Violent movies are in our cineplexes year-round, but especially in summer. Misogynist and gangsta music is consumed across the traditional socio-economic-race spectrum. Youtube, Vine and other sharing media bring to any capable device all of the "knockout game" and similar idiotic acts of violence for anyone to consume, and laugh at. Our kids, especially our young boys and men, are no longer repulsed from senseless violence and, in the case of "body count equals status" games, makes seeking maximum mayhem a goal. Then we have ADHD, ADD and the easy application of psychotropic drugs as a panacea to "problem boys" in a society that sees boys as defective girls more than their being different. Now add to this dysfunctional families, divorce, absentee fathers, placating mothers and some being outcasts and we can see that Lanza is not isolated because such things are all around us. IMO, this is WHY the good folks at CAGV, March for Change, et. al. regularly ignore the mental health and societal aspects of rampage violence - because the "causes" or at least the factors common to all such killers, are pervasive and all around us. So since there is no "easy fix" for the factors in our society that create such killers, they go after the implements, irrespective of the history on such efforts being of little to no preventative value.
JED November 28, 2013 at 01:32 PM
And why would I delete a comment that I AGREE WITH, Alex? And the name calling? Gimme a break!!!
Thomas Paine November 28, 2013 at 05:50 PM
Judy - I am not accusing you of deleting my comment nor do I think Alex is doing so. This is either the work of an editor (I doubt) or the work of one or more people using the "Flag" button to silence a voice with which they disagree. I have turned off email notifications of comments so I did not have a record of my own comments to repost so I thank you both for returning them to this page. Judy, without knowing your views toward guns, I also thank you for your concurrence that these are complex challenges that many would prefer we leave unexamined. Sadly, there are those who are so ideologically constipated that they can not accept even seeing an opposing view in print/pixels, especially when they do not have the rhetorical strength to argue their own views. Then they either succumb to using ad hominem attacks or, as in this case, silencing the voice through brute force of the flagging process.
JED November 29, 2013 at 06:55 PM
Thank you, Thomas, for giving me the benefit of doubt - Alex is pushing it big time and I feel personally attacked unjustifiably., I am going to switch gears,Thomas, because I think we have much in common. I do not speak/ write as eloquently as you but I am passionate in my views and beliefs - as others who oppose my view. That's ok because we are not programed robots. I grew up with guns in the house. It was no big deal - it was just accepted and I never gave it a thought. But now, You are against or for with no gray area to discuss - Recommend
James November 30, 2013 at 09:43 AM
I would like to thank Barbara for calling out the one person who was as culpable as the very trouble and in need of institutionalization AL. It's was his mother, who allowed such lack of parental guidance, a disgrace. To placate a seriously trouble boy, with multiple guns, violent video games, seclusion from the world and the encouragement of isolationism in her home. Again I hold her in contempt as well. I ask where was the father figure in all of this ? abandoning a potential time bomb in the making or just paid his way to not have to care. From the facts in this case both of these persons needed mental help and are both to blame!
Dart November 30, 2013 at 10:04 AM
According to the summary report and other media reports, he cut off contact with his father and brother in 2010. It doesn't sound like the father abandoned him. How do you institutionalize an adult who refuses treatment? I think it is very difficult to do that unless there is some kind of imminent threat. There is a serious problem with mental health care in this country.
COSMO P November 30, 2013 at 10:26 AM
Lets cut to the chase the report is nothing but SMOKE & MIRRORS. Put out to cover up whatever really happened that day and the people involved in the cover up do not give a dam about releasing it. The 911 tapes were ordered released and everyone is screaming about the families involved. That is a load of garbage because they suffered the ultimate pain. Why would not the family's involved not want the truth weather good or bad. I personally would demand the release of all info if it involved my family Are the authorities afraid of what the report will say and prove. Or is the 911 Tapes so bad that the authorities do not want them released??? Something is very wrong here and someone is hell bent on covering it up WHY!!!!!!!!!!!!!
MoonBeamWatcher November 30, 2013 at 02:44 PM
Let's see NoW, this History major, or English major elected to write a story - and got it published - about the NEVER ending search to find SANITY in INSANITY! GD kid was sick. Only communicated with mommy dearest via TEXT or eMail. Lived in isolation in his room and was seriously involved with VIOLENT, murderous and school specific murder and meyhem and mother attempts to bond by involving her son is SOMETHING, unfortunately is was GUNS which get her killed along with so many other innocents! God bless us ALL. Amen.
rob stanwich December 01, 2013 at 01:44 PM
I dont think anyone is afraid of releasing tapes etc. At some point you have to ask yourself WHY? Those of you who want to relive those horrific moments...I cant figure that out. People need to respect that families and the community need time to heal and get past this. Due to many factors and circumstances a sick individual committed this terrible tragedy when all these dark factors all came together on that fateful day. Gun laws past or present were not and will not unfortunately stop this from happening again somewhere. The agendas by some are sickening to pass legislation. Do you really think that if these laws were passed a month before the shooting occurred that adam lanza would of only showed up with 10 rd magazines. At some point people you need to exercise some common sense. Seems to be a tall task for some with these wild conspiracies and theories.
rob stanwich December 01, 2013 at 05:36 PM
Im pretty sure they were there In a respective response time. As far as entering the school I would imagine the same.
sassy January 04, 2014 at 05:45 PM
Judy you grew up with guns in your house? Wasn't your dad a psychophrenic?

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