Newtown School Shootings: Two Adult Survivors Considered Key Witnesses, Police Say

on December 17 2012 1:12 PM
Newtown Mourners
Mourners embrace Monday as they leave the Honan Funeral Home in Newtown, Conn. Reuters

Two adults who were wounded in the deadly mass shooting in Connecticut on Friday, when 20-year-old gunman Adam Lanza opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School, are recovering in the hospital, state police said during a news briefing on Monday, reported Reuters.

The update came after media outlets initially reported that only one wounded victim had survived the brutal massacre in Newtown, which claimed the lives of 20 children, all between the ages of 6 and 7, and six adults.

It was the only piece of new information released by State Police spokesman Lt. J. Paul Vance; the other elements of the case, that the single shooter was found dead inside the school from a self-inflicted gunshot, and his mother, Nancy, was found dead inside her home, remained unchanged.

Vance said that police are treating the two survivors as key eyewitnesses in the case, as investigators work to reconstruct a detailed timeline of Lanza’s steps leading up to the shooting. Vance was careful to add that the interviews with the two survivors will be conducted pending their improved medical condition, and that police would handle any interviews with children “extremely delicately.”

“There are many, many witnesses,” Vance said, cautioning that the investigation would likely take a long time and was "too difficult to discuss." He also requested that the media give family members space during the ongoing investigation.

“We’ve been asked by the family members to ask the members of the press to respect their privacy and to please leave them alone at this time,” said Vance. “I’m pleading with you, as you know this is an extremely heartbreaking, difficult thing for these folks to endure. Please abide by their request.”

In the meantime, Vance said that a computer crimes unit along with a computer forensics team was examining all the evidence that had been seized at multiple locations.