Skip to main content

tv   Weekend Early Start  CNN  December 15, 2012 3:00am-4:00am PST

3:00 am
america. >> it has got to be tackled, and all areas. a proper debate. my argument is, politicians here don't want to have this debate. >> well, they have to. they have to. you have to have a congressman like jerry nadler on today, you have to have a republican congressman step up, get together. this has to be taken care of, we can't talk about it anymore, we have to start doing things in america. >> listen, thank you all for joining me. all in your own way have been through horror stories of your own. it is time. president obama talked in a moving and emotional way. it's time for action. time that america's politicians just did something. stop worrying about the gun lobby who make millions, billions out of this trade in what often leads to appalling death it is time for some moral . well, i'd like to say it's a good morning, but it is a very sad morning here in newtown, pennsylvania. it's saturday, december 15th, i'm ali velshi and you are watching cnn special coverage of
3:01 am
the connecticut school shooting live as i say from pennsylvania. it is one of the deadliest shooting rampages in u.s. history. all morning, we'll bring you updates on the victims and the investigation. we now know the name of the newtown shooter. we'll dig in on what was behind his monstrous act and a second crime scene tied to the first. what investigators found when they went to the suspected gunman's house. i'm here in newtown, pennsylvania. behind me some distance is the school at which this tragic shooting took place. we have this story covered from all angles. i want to bring in my colleague john berman in newtown, in the town square. john, bring us up to speed on what we've seen since yesterday evening. >> hey, ali, i'm standing in
3:02 am
front of the st. rose of lima church where last night there was an emotional vigil with about 1,000 people here. residents poured in for the 26 victims of this tragic attack. of course, 20 children were killed, six adults, all at the elementary school. and we're learning more about the shooter, which we're going to get into in a moment. but first, let's focus right now on the victims and what happened at that school, and here in this community. the community gathered to say their prayers and give thanks for the survivors. they also said good-bye to the victims. all of them trying to come to grips with this horrible, horrible tragedy. >> people's children and brothers and sisters were taken from them. people's spouses, those teachers and administrators were taken from us. yet, we stand in a church, and
3:03 am
many of us today in the coming days will rely upon that which we have been taught and that which we inherently believe that there is faith for a reason. and that faith itself is god's gift. in these times of troubles when the unthinkable happens in our very midst, our faith is tested. not just in the religious sense, not just necessarily our faith in god, but our faith in community, and who we are and what we collectively are. >> reporter: officials here in newtown are expected to begin releasing the names of the victims about two hours from now. there's that news conference scheduled for 8:00 a.m. eastern time. then we will have the names, really, to put in our prayers.
3:04 am
we want to think, though, for a moment about the parents of the victims and what they're going through this morning. it is almost unimaginable. the bodies of those children remain inside the school this morning still in place where they were shot. police say, of course, it's still an active crime scene, so the bodies of the children, the adults, and the shooter, they're not being moved at all right now. we p want to go back for a few minutes to see how this tragedy unfolded. to piece together how it went down. here's a small part of the radio transmissions between the police as they got word of this shooting. >> caller is indicating she thinks someone's shooting in the building. the front glass has been broken out, they're unsure why. all units, the individual i have on the phone is continuing to hear what he believes to be gunfire. units responding to sandy hook at this time, the shooting appears to have shot -- the school is in lockdown.
3:05 am
>> reporter: what they found at the school was a horrifying scene. there have been grief counselors on-site, not just for the families, but also to speak to the first responders who say it's some of the worst visions, worst sights they've seen in their long, long careers. anderson cooper right now takes us through this tragedy. >> all units, the individual i have on the phone is continuing to hear what he believes to be gunfire. >> reporter: the first word was chilling, it only got worse. >> they're reporting multiple fatalities involved in this shooting at the elementary school. >> reporter: with each new report, the horror deepened. >> reports say the number of dead closer to 30 than to 20 and sadly most of them are children. >> reporter: every detail, every fact brought more sadness. each fresh piece of information, a part of the picture, a school, kindergarten through fourth grade, a sanctuary that was supposed to be a place of safety
3:06 am
torn apart. >> she heard the intercom came on to the school and she heard a scream and a gun shot, two gun shots. and then the school went into lockdown. >> a student's teenage big brother describing the sounds of a gunman on the loose at sandy hook elementary. >> offduty troopers responded to the school and police upon arrival entered the school and began a complete active shooter search of the building. >> they arrived to carnage. the killer says a law enforcement source with detailed knowledge was dressed for battle in black fatigues and armed for mass murder with two pistols and a military-style rifle. students were told to hide in corners, teachers risked their own lives to pull boys and girls to safety. >> i'm so grateful to the teacher who saved them. >> you think the teacher saved his life? >> he did. he had bullets going by him and she grabbed him and another child and pulled him into a classroom.
3:07 am
>> reporter: eventually the kids were evacuated to a nearby fire house where frantic parents descended. >> it was terrifying. i'm still terrified. i still don't know what happened. i know there are some people missing that have been taken to the hospital. >> his son was okay, his son's teacher was alive, as well. 20 other children and six adults were killed. the dead believe to include sandy hook school psychologist and the principal. police discovered another adult victim, the gunman's mother reportedly at home in newtown. the gunman too is dead. police say they fired no shots. a tight knit community, including a nurse who lived nearby and rushed to help distraught. >> i see you've been crying. >> yes. >> is it because what you saw? >> one of the cops -- the worst thing he'd ever seen in his entire career, but it was when they told the parents. all of these parents were waiting for their children to come out. they thought they were, you know, still alive. there's 20 parents that were
3:08 am
just told that their children are dead. it was awful. >> reporter: awful. and late today speaking for the nation but also as a father, an emotional president obama fought back tears. >> this evening, michelle and i will do what every parent in america will do, which is hug our children a little tighter. and we'll tell them that we love them. and we'll remind each other how deeply we love one another. but there are families in connecticut who cannot do that tonight. and they need all of us right now. >> reporter: you saw it in the president's face, you heard it in his voice. i simply can't think of an event in recent memory that touched so many people, seemed to affect them so directly right in their hearts, right in their souls. for more information about how you can help those people directly affected here by the shooting in newtown, go to i want to go back to ali velshi just down the street here in
3:09 am
newtown. ali? >> you know, john, you see those parents so emotionally distraught and so much of the community like that and elsewhere in the community, there's this feeling about how stunned everybody is. when you travel around this town as i did last night, john, as you saw, it's a bit of a sleepy place, it's a quiet place. in the last ten years, i understand there's been one homicide here. we are now learning a little bit more about the man who police say was the shooter. he is 20-year-old adam lanza. last night, our piers morgan got insight on lanza from a former classmate. >> he was really quiet, he kept to himself. he was a little fidgety, a little uneasy sometimes if you were to look at him. i think he was just socially not really into going out there and making as many friends as everyone else was doing in elementary school and middle school. preferred to stay to himself. >> reporter: adam lanza's body
3:10 am
was found in the school. his mother's body was found at the home they shared about 2 1/2 miles from here. that is where our mary snow is standing by this morning. mary, the area that you are in, big houses, it's a prosperous area, a quiet area. there aren't even street lights around you. the only lights you've got are the ones provided by our lights. this is not something that area's used to. what do we know now about the area and adam lanza? >> yeah, ali, we -- it's believed he did live with his mother and that house is behind me on this quiet road which is now closed off by police, and, of course, as you said, people are absolutely stunned by this. in terms of what we know about him, disturbed is one word a neighbor used to describe him. others described him as different, socially awkward, and quiet. but one woman who came by yesterday, she's a former school
3:11 am
bus driver and he was on her route, she said, you know, he was a quiet kid but she never saw anything dangerous, you know, about him. and a number of people we talked to in this area, even though it is a very closed tight-knit community, it's physically very large. and houses are pretty separate from each other at a good distance. and many people really were not familiar with the family. but it's really kind of a mixed picture. but one word we did here often was very quiet and different. >> mary, let's understand about the handguns. there were two handguns used in the attack. a semiautomatic weapon found in a car nearby. what do we know about how he got his hands on those guns? >> reporter: well, our own susan candiotti has been reporting
3:12 am
that those handguns were legally purchased and they were purchased and registered to lanza's mother nancy, and that's what we know about those guns. >> it's a strict gun laws in connecticut. they have to be registered. they've got a gun registry in the state, which is why the authorities, i think, were able to trace that back so quickly to being guns sold to his mother. thank you. mary snow is outside the location where nancy lanza lived with her son adam lanza. over the next days and weeks we're going to hear a lot about the gunman and theorys and explanations about how something this horrible could've happened. until then, now is the time to remember the victims and the survivors of the day that stole the innocence from hundreds and hundreds of people. >> this is a very, very tragic, tragic scene for everybody. certainly our hearts are broken for the families here.
3:13 am
>> well, you know, about 9:30, 9:40, we heard noises, and the announcement system was still n on, so it didn't go off so you could hear what sounded like pops, gun shots. >> her teacher managed to take two children out of the hallway, pull them in the classroom, lock the door, and move everybody over to the other side of the room. >> we just told a little boy about his sister now. and who am i going to play with, he said? i have nobody to play with now. excuse me. >> when your first grader goes to bed and says, mommy, is anyone from my class last year, are they all okay? are they all okay? and you look at them and say i'm not really sure. >> you can never be prepared for
3:14 am
this kind of incident. what has happened, what has transpired at that school building will leave a mark on this community and every family impacted. this holiday, share everything.
3:15 am
share "not even close." share "you owe me..." share "just right." the share everything plan. sharable data across 10 devices with unlimited talk and text. get a droid razr m by motorola for $49.99.
3:16 am
3:17 am
may god bless the memory of the victims. and in the words scripture, heal the broken hearted and bind up their wounds. >> reporter: bind up their wounds. welcome back to newtown, connecticut, everyone. good morning. we would like to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. you're watching cnn's special coverage of the connecticut school shooting. i'm john berman standing in front of the st. rose of lima catholic church where last night there was a large ceremony to mourn the victims lost. we're awaiting a news conference here at 8:00 a.m. eastern time in connecticut where authorities
3:18 am
are expected to release the names of the children and adults killed at the sandy hook elementary school. 26 people killed there, 20 children, 6 adults, the mother of the victim also found dead at a separate location. i want to check in now with nick valencia in the cnn newsroom. one of them, the school principal. nick, what do we know about her? >> good morning, john. as you mentioned, i'm here at the cnn center in atlanta where we're working on gathering the latest information on the victims of this horrible tragedy, the connecticut school shooting. as you mentioned, 47-year-old principal dawn hochsprung, described as the kind of person you would want educating your kids, john. she was a very involved educator with memorable enthusiasm according to those that knew her. she spent her entire career rising through the ranks of the connecticut school system,
3:19 am
teaching in small communities where she was a fixture in schools before coming to sandy hook. she taught in local elementary schools, middle schools, and high schools. those who remember her say she created an environment, john, that made people feel accepted and important. not only was she an educator, john, she was also a mother and leaves behind two daughters and three stepdaughters, and as we mentioned, she was just 47 years old. john? >> we heard so many of the parents in this community, so many of the surviving children talk about what an amazing leader she was inside this school community. and one of the most interesting things, she'd been dealing with the issue of school security lately, taking some new measures at the sandy hook elementary school. what were they? >> earlier this year, john, she oversaw the installation of a new security project there at sandy hook school. they took security very seriously there, and this new program they installed, it made visitors that showed up at the
3:20 am
front entrance have to ring the bell, ring the buzzer in order to get in the school. the school doors locked at about 9:30 in the morning. we're still trying to piece together the details of how this suspected shooter got into sandy hook elementary school. those details are still very vague. but as you mentioned, john, in just a couple of hours at about 8:00 a.m. eastern, local authorities will be holding a press conference to give us more information on the victims. the story really is about the victims of this senseless tragedy in connecticut. we'll bring you more details about the victims and hopefully more information as it unfolds there out of connecticut in newtown, connecticut. john? >> thank you so much, nick valencia. as you said, it is about the victims. 26 people killed in all at the school, 20 kids ages 5 to 10, six grown-ups, so many futures ahead of them that will never be realized. i want to go now back to ali velshi near the sandy hook elementary school here in
3:21 am
newtown. hey, ali. >> reporter: john, you know, as i said we are at a field, a football field, which authorities set up around here so that the media could gather. obviously there's media here from all over the northeast, all over the united states, and, in fact, from other countries. last night i saw some people here from a russian television station. we've got some canadians near us. the school is -- this is a tight little town, john. as you know, it doesn't have space for everybody converging on it. the school is behind us some distance where adam lanza lived was about 2 1/2 miles away. and this is a little town that could not have imagined the horror that unfolded at sandy hook elementary school here in newtown, connecticut. what can you do to keep your children safe if you're ever, ever in this kind of situation? cnn's brian todd talked to a school security chief. >> reporter: a nightmare scenario for any school security official, but michael blow has some ideas on how to avoid mass casualties if a gunman's inside
3:22 am
your school. >> how do you respond if there are kids all around? >> well, i think that's where the training comes in. >> reporter: he's head of security for prince georges county public schools in maryland. a former deputy police chief who once had to lock down a school. he took us through an elementary school that officials didn't want us to name. showed us what to do if that nightmare unfolds. >> exits are obviously key, right? >> yes. >> find the nearest one. >> absolutely, absolutely. and it's important to be familiar with the building. that's why, again, we encourage just little things. a building familiarization, just walking the outside of the building so you know if you believe this particular door if it comes to a creek or a parking lot or a busy intersection. >> reporter: adults and students, he says, have to have that exit awareness. but if you're stuck inside, michael blow says while bathrooms may be a tempting place to hide at first, not a good idea. as you can see, a very confined space and usually no way out. courtyards, he says, are equally tempting but also not the best
3:23 am
places because they're often enclosed. >> michael, if there's a classroom, there's a gunman out there, we've heard shots, don't know where he is. what do we do? we lock, turn lights off, close windows? >> well, certainly there are a host of things we would do in an emergency that would include locking doors to make sure that we are able to fortify that entrance way as best as we can. again, if there are no safe alternatives for evacuating the building and that way if someone was to walk by the room that they wouldn't have an easy sight picture of anyone in the room. >> adults in the room, he says, should talk the kids through it as calmly as possible. >> what about large rooms like gyms? >> again -- >> would you go in, avoid it? >> well, again, there's not a lot of places to conceal yourselves as you see there, but there's a way to get to the other side of the building. >> blow didn't want to give away too many preemptive school measures, but says they sometimes use wanding devices to
3:24 am
screen students. but he says some of the best screening is awareness of who's troubled, who's being bullied, having that radar up for potential assailants. >> of course, we know that despite any school's best efforts, if someone is determined to cause harm, they will find a way and sadly that's exactly what happened at sandy hook elementary school. john, a couple of interesting things. david was here yesterday afternoon and went to the fire house, it was a rendezvous point to meet up with their kids. and he saw them going in and in many cases parents came out with their kids and he said the reaction on their faces was of such relief but strain and stress and then there were those parents who went there expecting to find their kids and left without them. they still haven't seen their kids. the bodies were still being processed last night. police wanted to get tentative identifications on all of the bodies before they were able to release that information to
3:25 am
their parents. and of course, we will hear about that this morning probably within the next couple of hours. police are expecting to update us at about 8:00 eastern time. john, the other thing let's talk about. you were in hoboken, new jersey, last night, which for a while was treated as the scene of a crime. tell us what was going on in hoboken. >> reporter: you know, ali, it was so interesting, for much of yesterday, hoboken, the street was abuzz with activity. hoboken city police, jersey city police, bomb squad representatives and the fbi. the reason was they were going into the apartment of ryan lanza who is the brother of the shooter, the suspected shooter adam lanza. apparently adam had his brother's i.d. on him when he went into the school and conducted the shooting. so authorities went right to ryan's apartment in hoboken, took him into custody briefly for questioning also questioned some friends who may have lived with him there. it was just a confusing situation. they removed some materials from
3:26 am
that apartment trying to piece together exactly what happened. as the night wore on, the police presence became less and less, i think as they gathered more information and realized that may not have been the center of their interests, shall we say going forward. i'm standing in front of ali, also i should mention the st. rose church of lima where last night there was that candle light vigil. you walk inside the church here and there are two poster boards where people have already posted dozens and dozens of notes of grief and solidarity with the people in this community. many people have come from out of town to post notes there. and we spoke to the police briefly and they're planning, obviously, days and days of assistance so that everyone in this community can come together after these just -- this awful, awful day. and after such a tragic and emotional nightmare for this community, you know, you can understand that they have a lot
3:27 am
to discuss and a lot to grieve and probably want to do it together. ali? >> well, one parent we spoke to was just thankful, john, for what those teachers who were able to able to offer those kids comfort and offer them some protection, one parent was really, really grateful about what a teacher had done for her son. >> i'm just so grateful to the teacher who saved him. >> you think the teacher saved his life? >> she definitely did. he had bullets going by him and grabbed him and another child and pulled him into a classroom. [ female announcer ] imagine skin so healthy, it never gets dry again.
3:28 am
can your moisturizer do that? [ female announcer ] dermatologist recommended aveeno has an oat formula, now proven to build a moisture reserve, so skin can replenish itself. that's healthy skin for life. only from aveeno. is the same frequent heartburn treatment as prilosec otc. now with a fancy coating that gives you a burst of wildberry flavor. now why make a flavored heartburn pill? because this is america. and we don't just make things you want, we make things you didn't even know you wanted. like a spoon fork. spray cheese. and jeans made out of sweatpants. so grab yourself some new prilosec otc wildberry. [ male announcer ] one pill each morning. 24 hours. zero heartburn. satisfaction guaranteed or your money back.
3:29 am
you know, one job or the other. the moment i could access the retirement plan, i just became firm about it -- you know, it's like it just hits you fast. you know, you start thinking about what's really important here. ♪
3:30 am
3:31 am
half past the hour now. welcome back, everyone. i'm john berman in newtown, connecticut. you're watching cnn's special coverage of the connecticut school shooting. we are live this morning in newtown where yesterday there was so much tragedy. in just about 60 minutes, we expect to start learning the identities of many of the victims here in newtown. meanwhile, the community still searching for answers just like the police. just like all of us. they're all looking for answers to the question why. why did this happen? why did someone attack an elementary school killing 26 people, 20 of them children ages 5 to 10 years old? last night the community gathered to pay their respects. many of them behind me at this church and to console one another. they also said good-bye to the victims killed at the shooting, at the sandy hook elementary school. here's just a small piece of the radio traffic between first responders as the details of the shooting really started to come in.
3:32 am
>> medics, you're requested to stage -- i will need two ambulances at this time. >> just received a call. we have one female in room one who has received a gun shot wound to the foot. >> i need units in the pool. i've got bodies here. be advised, we do have multiple weapons, including rifle and shotguns. >> -- require backup and they said call for everything. >> what is the number of ambulances you'll require. >> they don't know. they are not giving us a number. >> fire rescue 444 respond, 12 dickinson drive sandy hook school. respond, sandy hook school. medical emergencies. >> i have multiple ambulance personnel coming inbound. can we stage the area command
3:33 am
area in the school parking area? >> they found a chilling scene, a horrific scene, the scene which all the first responders say they have never seen before. it's a safe community. before this, they only had one reported homicide in the past ten years. but now, newtown will be synonymous with towns like columbine, blacksburg, like towns where we've seen so many of these tragedies. i want to bring in mary snow right now. and right now law enforcement sources say the shooter was 20-year-old adam lanza and say they found his mother's body at the home they shared together. you are outside that home right now. what more can you tell us about this investigation? >> reporter: well, john, i can tell you that the police still have blocked off the road leading to the lanza home. and yesterday s.w.a.t. teams had descended on this area for several hours.
3:34 am
and as you mentioned, adam lanza's mother's body was found at the home. and investigators had been asking neighbors, trying to piece together as much information as they could about this family. and what we have been hearing from former classmates is that adam lanza was described as a student who was very bright, very quiet, some of the descriptions about him were socially awkward. yesterday, there was a woman who said she was a former bus driver and knew him when he was younger and she said that there was nothing about him that really stood out. take a listen. >> he was a nice kid. very polite. she raised very nice boys, to me. that's why i think it's a shock. to even know them and realize who they are and what he did. you can't understand what happened that he -- that he snapped what have you and took such innocent lives.
3:35 am
>> and some of the neighbors who knew him in recent years, some described him as being different. one neighbor used the word troubled to describe him, but wouldn't really elaborate on that. john? >> mary, three guns, we understand, at the scene. two handguns, a cig sieor, a glock. do we have a sense of where the shooter got these weapons? >> yeah, and very strict laws here in connecticut. and what we have learned from our own susan candiotti's reporting is that these guns were legally purchased and purchased in the name of nancy lanza, the suspect's mother. >> reporter: nancy lanza for much of the day yesterday, people have been reporting she worked at the school. there appear to be questions
3:36 am
about that. what more have you learned about her lifestyle, anything from the neighbors who may know her? >> yeah, and you know, john, as you said, this is a tight-knit community and so many of the people here have sent their children to sandy hook elementary school. and we could find no one who could place her at the school or say that there was a definitive link. we did meet one neighbor who had known her in the past, describing her as a good mother. she was -- her belief that she was a stay-at-home mom and was unaware of any jobs that she held. so it's really unclear about, you know, her profession or if there was any link to the school. >> mary snow, thank you so much. you've been here since early yesterday working on this story. it's hard for everyone involved. thanks, mary. ali? >> john, mary was at that church you're at now. one of the several vigils that took place around here. it's such a small town.
3:37 am
and yet there are so many points of concentration around here. in fact, as you played that tape of the communication between first responders yesterday, you talked about them, they talked about a staging area. one of the things they did early because this is a small town with small streets, narrow streets that can accommodate the influx of media that have come in to cover it. they put us all at a park, tread well park, it's football field -- soccer field in front of me right now. the school is behind us and this is a space where everybody's converged. just beside me in about an hour, they'll hold the news conferences. they were holding them elsewhere today and they decided this is where everybody is and this is where they're going to start letting everybody know what's going on. what we are expecting at 8:00 eastern is the release of some names. we have been reporting it's adam lanza, the shooter, but police have not offered that identification as of yet. they want positive identifications on the shooter and the victims.
3:38 am
so they'll be bringing that to us. we expect at 8:00 or some time thereafter. remember, there were 18 children shot in the school, six adults, two of the children died at the hospital. one person remains wounded and in the hospital. now it's been over 21 hours since this unimaginable nightmare happened here in newtown. all started when a gunman entered through the doors of sandy hook elementary school. tom foreman walks us through what happened minute by minute. >> this is what we know at this point about the time line of the shooting as reported by law enforcement officials and witnesses. and the layout of the school as best we can piece it all together. 9:30 in the morning, classes underway for half an hour. more than 600 students and about 50 faculty members are inside the building. in addition to that, a meeting convened by some school officials, including the principal -- about seven of them gathered in one room. about 9:40, ten minutes later as
3:39 am
best we can make it out again, that's when the gunman appears to have entered the building. how? we don't know, they had a new security system that might have kept him out. not sure what happened with that. police spent a lot of time looking at a car parked right out here in the fire lane suggesting that if that were his car that, in fact, he may have indeed come right through the front door here into the school. people throughout the building at that point start saying that they're hearing shots. 9:41, the calls start going in to 911 at that point. and the principal, the vice principal, and the school psychologist all go toward the gunfire out in the hallway according to a witness. only the vice principal returns, and the vice principal is wounded. there are many, many shots out there. everyone says they hear it. authorities say the shooting itself happened in a relatively short period of time, and they
3:40 am
say the gunman generally stays in this area. in fact, they say all the shooting happens in two rooms. 9:45, teachers throughout this building are trying to protect students, in some cases the students say they helped them hide, in others there seems to be some indication that teachers may have tried to get them out of the building. the bottom line is, though, you see the pictures of the newtown bee, there was an effort to get the students out to safety. and it was a difficult stunt to pull off because you have hundreds of kids here and they're obviously traumatized and very, very upset. 9:50. by this time for sure, and again, we're not sure of the time line, it's murky, but the gunman somewhere in this process has died. police officers say no officer fired a shot. so it's believed he shot himself, but this we do know. as officers arrive on the scene from state and local police, they secure the entire building and they spread out through it trying to make sure there are no other gunmen and trying to find
3:41 am
all these pockets of children hiding within this building. and at that point, they start escorting them out of the building as well. a difficult, difficult time, and this time line is what the investigators are going to have to build upon in the coming weeks to clarify, to make sure we know exactly when things happened and how. >> reporter: and that is tom foreman reporting for cnn. in the aftermath of friday's tragedy, questions are being formed around the guns that were used. three weapons were recovered from the scene. similar to the ones we're about to show you. they include two pistols, a glock and a sig sieor. a bush master rifle. all three guns were legally purchased by the shooter's mother. let's discuss this a little more. we're joined by tom fuentes.
3:42 am
tom, let's start with you. the bush master was registered to the suspect's mother, nancy lanz, a semiautomatic weapon in a state that is called a may issue state. it's not the easiest place to get a gun. particularly a semiautomatic gun. explain why we think nancy lanza had a bush master and was able to get one. >> good morning, ali. i think right now there's no clue why she would've gotten those weapons. she may have been in fear of being burglarized or robbed or somebody else happening. maybe she had been threatened, you know, once before in her life and felt like she wanted weapons in the house to protect herself. but, there's not going to be an easy answer to that question unless she told a friend or relative why she wanted to have those three weapons. >> you know, let me follow up, tom. how hard is it to get a bush master rifle?
3:43 am
and if i can ask about the pistols for a second, what are the issues surrounding them? are they possible to load with these high number of round magazines with a lot of bullets? >> yes, they're possible to do that. the standard magazine would generally enable that gun to have about 15 bullets in it. each of the two guns, about 15 bullets a piece, but you can buy extended magazines that carry 30 rounds like we saw in the tucson shooting a couple years ago. that would be available. we don't know if he had that in this case or if he just reloaded and had multiple magazines and reloaded as he ran out. because we think he shot more than 30 rounds from the two pistols. >> tom, these pistols are common. they are actually commonly used by police, particularly that glock. bush master bit more of an unusual weapon. but if civilians are going to get pistols, these are the two more common ones around.
3:44 am
>> well, in sense, they're not as common because of the fact they're high-quality guns that are more expensive than the average pistole. obviously professional law enforcement officers would want to have a quality pistol such as a glock or sig sauer. these are quality weapons, you know, as we've seen, unfortunately, when brought to a bad purpose. as far as the bush master, again, these guns are legal. any restrictions on assault rifles that had been in place have expired or not renewed by the congress. so pretty much anybody can go if they meet the gun checks can go ahead and purchase this. and in this situation, no matter how mentally ill the shooter may have been, there's no indication that his mother was or that she had any trouble purchasing the weapons, registering the weapons, or having them. you still have the issue of a
3:45 am
mentally disturbed person in a home where the homeowner in this case the mother legally owns weapons. >> and we're still waiting to find out if, in fact, there's -- sorry, john, go ahead. >> no, i was just going to say you mentioned before the number of shots fired. we believe we hear from witnesses they heard at least 100 rounds go off in the hallway. you talked about the number of bullets these could hold the 30 magazines if they had extended clips. how hard would it be to get off 100 rounds in this type of event? >> as quickly as you can pull the trigger and reload magazines. when somebody runs out of ammunition, which doesn't often happen in the movies, but when that happens and they reload the magazine, one of the victims may pounce on the shooter and attack him at that point when he's vulnerable. but here we're talking 5 and 6-year-olds. so even if he stops for two seconds to switch magazines and put a fresh magazine in the gun to keep going, the little kids aren't going to be able to stop
3:46 am
him. so this is a whole different situation than we have if it occurred on a city street corner or even with adults. >> tom, in connecticut, as we said, this is a -- it's called a may issue state. which means if you fulfill the requirements required to get a gun, they have other things they can do to determine whether someone should or should not have access to a gun. how does that work? >> well, you know, in this case, if the mother has never been arrested or judged mentally ill and she wants to purchase a weapon, she goes through the procedures in place in the state of connecticut, which are reportedly more stringent than many of the other states where these type of shootings have occurred. but if she's in a position to go ahead and buy that weapon or three weapons legally, you know, it doesn't -- that doesn't solve the problem. she's got the guns that are in the house, you know, it just
3:47 am
took her son to steal them from her and turn them on her and go forward. >> tom, thanks for your input into this, former assistant fbi director joining us now. in washington, a visibly emotional and tearful president obama addressed the nation yesterday afternoon. he offered prayers, solace and support for the victims in this tragedy. >> we've endured too many of these tragedies in the past few years. i know there's not a parent in america who doesn't feel the same overwhelming grief that i do. the majority of those who died today were children. beautiful little kids between the ages of 5 and 10 years old. they had their entire lives ahead of them. birthdays, graduations, weddings, kids of their own.
3:48 am
among the fallen were also teachers, men and women who devoted their lives to helping our children fulfill their dreams. our hearts are broken for the parents of the survivors, as well. for 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 and there are no words that will ease their pain. this evening, michelle and i will do i know what every parent in america will do which is hug our children a little tighter and tell them we love them. and we'll remind each other how deeply we love one another. but there are families in connecticut who cannot do that tonight. may god bless the memory of the victims. and in the words of scripture, heal the broken hearted and bind up their wounds. [ sniffs ] i have a cold. [ sniffs ] i took dayquil but my nose is still runny. [ male announcer ] truth is, dayquil doesn't treat that.
3:49 am
really? [ male announcer ] alka-seltzer plus fights your worst cold symptoms, plus it relieves your runny nose. [ breathes deeply ] awesome. [ male announcer ] yes, it is. that's the cold truth! i heard you guys can ship ground for less than the ups store. that's right. i've learned the only way to get a holiday deal is to camp out. you know we've been open all night. is this a trick to get my spot? [ male announcer ] break from the holiday stress. save on ground shipping at fedex office.
3:50 am
3:51 am
i would like to share a letter from his holiness, pope benedict xvi who sent his condolences from the vatican.
3:52 am
>> i was promptly informed of the shooting at sandy hook elementary school in newtown, connecticut. i convey my heart felt grief and the assurance of my personal prayers to the victims and their families, to all those of the community of newtown and especially the parish of st. rose of lima. in the aftermath of the senseless tragedy, i ask god our father to console all those who mourn and to sustain the entire community with the spiritual strength which triumphs over violence by the power forgiveness, hope, and reconciling love. with gratitude, for your prayers, and your presence, i remain yours in christ, benedict xvi. welcome back, everyone, to our special coverage of the connecticut school shooting. i'm john berman. this morning at 8:00 eastern time, we're anticipating a live news conference here in newtown, connecticut, where authorities
3:53 am
are expected to release the names of the children and the adults killed at the sandy hook elementary school. i want to bring in right now declan, a parent in this community. his 8-year-old daughter survived the shooting at the elementary school yesterday. and let me start off by saying, first of all, our thoughts are with you and this entire town, what you're all going through right now. let me ask you, how are you? and how's your daughter? >> my daughter is doing surprisingly well. she's doing surprisingly well after what she saw. >> how did this go down for you yesterday? when did you first get word that something horrible was happening at the school? what did they tell you? and what did they ask you to do? >> i worked about an hour plus away and my wife called me and said there'd been a shooting. she had already rushed to the school to get my daughter who
3:54 am
had made their way to the fire house. i was able to get to the fire house eventually and at that time, it was just too early. we had no idea about all the children and the faculty who had died. >> you knew your daughter was okay, though, correct? >> thank god. we knew she was okay and, you know, just gave her a big hug. you know, and just got her out of there. >> and so many parents across the country including me, frankly, want to know how to talk to our kids about this. our kids, of course, didn't go through this. has your daughter asked you any questions about what happened? >> well, that's a very difficult question. and, you know, very -- this is all new. so all we really can do, i think, is the best thing is to
3:55 am
be honest and let her know what we know. try to talk to them and try to reinforce the bad guy that did this is gone forever. because, of course, all they're talking about is not wanting to go to school again. both my children. i have a 10-year-old who was in another school on lockdown, as well. and they're just really, really freaked out. as you can imagine. >> absolutely. they're talking to you, they don't want to go back to school again. did your daughter tell you anything about what it was like to be in the school as this was happening? >> she was in a reading class, and it was a separated class with just -- usually there's just a few kids in there. and she heard a bunch of banging, sounded like hammering she said. and her teacher, her reading
3:56 am
teacher grabbed my daught as well as a fellow teacher that was in the reading room and actually locked them in the bathroom and they just heard lots of shots and i think my daughter said she heard screaming. and eventually the police were banging on the door and were able to escort them into the hallway, get them out towards, unfortunately, where from what i understand where most of the shootings happened, which was a pretty rough scene from what i understand from what my daughter told me. and then they were able to whisk them away to the fire house. and i believe my daughter, from what she tells me was the fir first -- the first kid to get to the fire house. >> this is something no kid should ever have to go through, declan, i think that goes without saying. what kind of communication are you getting from the town, from the authorities? >> you know, i've got to be frank with you, since this
3:57 am
happened, you know, the phone's been ringing off the hook. you know, people are wanting to know what's going on. so there's just been -- we actually turned our phones off yesterday. last night, and we've been just getting our sources from the news. we haven't let our kids watch the news yet. i don't know if that's the right or wrong decision, but i think it's best that we talk with them first and they're going to get plenty of that stuff later. and so, you know, news sources like yours is where we're getting our updates. >> declan, we sincerely appreciate you talking to us this morning. what are your plans for the weekend at this point? how do you -- how do you spend the next two days? >> i honestly haven't even thought about it. this is so new. most of my day yesterday was just spent -- you know, we got -- it wasn't that easy to
3:58 am
get out of the area. there were lots of emergency vehicles, police vehicles, you know, as you can imagine. so a lot of the day was spent getting out of there. and then i got my wife and my daughter home and had to go to the other school to get my son out of lockdown and we had to wait for that. and then we finally got home. and i just said, look, we need a quiet night together as a family and pray for those poor kids and those poor faculty members who we know so many of them. and i have no idea when the names come out, but it's just something that right now i can't even fathom when they release the names of those children who i'm sure we all -- we know and we know their families and the faculty members and, so, i really don't have a plan is to answer your question. >> please know that all of our
3:59 am
thoughts are with you. the entire country's thoughts are with you and your community this morning. thank you so much for being with us. thank you so much for being so strong. >> i really appreciate it. thank you. >> ali? >> john, tough conversation to listen to. and what he said, what declan said, it's going to be so hard when the names come out because people did try and have a quiet night last night. they don't know the names. the parents who didn't get their kids back know who they are, know who their kids are. everybody else doesn't. this morning at 8:00 a.m. eastern, we are anticipating a live news conference here in newtown, connecticut, where authorities are expected to release the names of the children and the adults, the six adults killed at sandy hook elementary school. let's check in now with nick valencia in atlanta. we know the school principal was one of the adults killed along with the school psychologist. i understand that a parent was with them in an office when the gunman opened fire inside the


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on