EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Boston and Beyond

October 21, 2013

Details emerge on Conn. school shootings

HARTFORD, Conn. — Investigators who entered Adam Lanza’s home after he shot and killed 20 first-graders and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., on Dec. 14 found his bed neatly made. An armoire held five matching tan-colored shirts with five pairs of khaki pants. Black garbage bags sealed with duct tape covered the bedroom windows.

An empty bowl rested on the desktop near damaged computer parts in the adjacent second-floor room in the home he shared with his mother, Nancy. Lanza had removed the hard drives from his computers, and then opened the metal containers to get at the discs which store data. He scratched a W through the discs, before trying to smash them with a barbell.

Lanza’s online activity, including his interaction with online users about guns, video games and computers, has become a topic of investigation for authorities attempting to determine why he shot his mother to death before shooting his way through the school.

A state police report is due soon, but law enforcement sources provided details that provide a clearer picture of what happened at Lanza’s home and in Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Police investigators concluded that Nancy Lanza had been shot four times in the same spot. The .22-caliber rifle that Adam Lanza used was pressed directly against her forehead and found at her bedside. The shades were still drawn in her bedroom, leading police to believe she was killed sometime before dawn.

Lanza drove to the school, where he killed 20 first-graders and six adults. The lone survivor from teacher Lauren Rousseau’s class was shielded from the gunman because she hid in one of the corners of the classroom’s tiny bathroom.

Among the other revelations, sources said, is that a school secretary and nurse remained hidden in a closet in Principal Dawn Hochsprung’s office for several hours even while state police officials used the office as a command center. The room had not been cleared by SWAT teams. Hochsprung was one of the adults killed.

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