Daily Israel Report

Adam Lanza Formally Identified as Newtown Shooter

Adam Lanza shot his mother "multiple times" before setting out on his rampage at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, police say.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 12/17/2012, 2:15 AM

 The families of victims grieve near Sandy Hook Elementary School
The families of victims grieve near Sandy Hook Elementary School
Reuters

Police in Connecticut formally identified on Sunday the shooter who gunned down 20 young children and six adults at a primary school as Adam Lanza, 20, and ruled his death a suicide, AFP reported.

Lieutenant Paul Vance also confirmed that Lanza first shot his mother Nancy dead at their home before setting out on his rampage. She died of "multiple gunshot wounds," Vance said.

He said Lanza shot himself with a handgun and that his primary weapon in the "horrific crime" gripping the town of Newtown was a Bushmaster AR-15 .223 caliber assault rifle with multiple high-capacity magazines. He could not, however, confirm what weapon Lanza used to kill his mother.

Two handguns used in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, a Glock 10 mm and a Sig Sauer 9 mm, were also loaded with high-capacity magazines, said Vance. He added that a fourth weapon, a shotgun, was recovered from Lanza's vehicle parked outside the school.

Police declined to hint at any possible motive they may have uncovered so far in their investigation.

"We don't have a specific reason we can stand here and say this occurred," Vance told reporters.

Police found "hundreds" of bullets at the school, Vance said, noting that "numerous" 30-round magazines were emptied. Police have yet to determine exactly how many shots were fired.

Connecticut's Chief Medical Examiner Wayne Carver said on Saturday that the bodies of the child victims -- all aged just six or seven -- were riddled with as many as 11 bullets. He said that in his more than 30 years on the job "this probably is the worst I have seen or the worst that I know of any of my colleagues having seen.”

President Barack Obama was set to visit Newtown to meet with families of the victims and the community at large, as well as to attend an interfaith vigil on Sunday evening.

Earlier on Sunday, six-year-old Noah Posner, the only Jewish victim in the massacre, was brought to rest.

Rabbi Shaul Praver of Edath Israel told his congregation that the massacre is "proof that there is much evil in the world."

On Saturday, Rabbi Praver had told the assembled worshipers: "Don’t think that life is somewhere over the rainbow. What you’ve got right now, with your family, your friends, your house: This might be as good as life is ever going to be."

The congregation also bade farewell to Ben Weiler, another boy murdered in the massacre. Although he was not Jewish, his parents used to volunteer at Edath Israel.