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28 Dead in Connecticut School Shooting

Newtown, Conn., officials say they're trying to reunite parents with children who remain under lockdown at Sandy Hook Elementary School following confirmed shootings Friday morning.

NEWTOWN, CONNECTICUT - Officials in Newtown say they're trying to reunite parents with their children in the wake of a shocking multiple shooting at a K-4 elementary school in the town’s Sandy Hook neighborhood.

  • Twenty-eight people are dead, including 20 children and 6 adults, according to multiple reports.
  • The gunman is dead and the school has been secured.
  • NBC identified the gunman as Ryan Lanza, 24, but reports now say the gunman may have been carrying his brother's ID and that the gunman may be Adam Lanza.
  • A family member of the gunman has also been found dead.

Newtown (Conn.) Patch is covering this unfolding news story.

First Selectman Pat Llodra told Newtown Patch that there is no information being released about the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting — only confirming that there was a shooting.

"I'm horrified, saddened and shocked that this happened in Newtown," Llodra said.

"Our priorities right now are making sure everyone safe and reuniting parents with their children."

A reverse 911 call went out to all Newtown public school parents, NBC is reporting. Parents are converging all around the school seeking information about their children.

One mother of an 8-year-old girl at the school, Brenda Lebinski, told Patch that her daughter is safe thanks to one teacher's decision to move all kids into a closet when a gunman had entered the building.

Lebinski said that she had spoken to her daughter's teacher as well as a volunteer who was in the school at the time of the shooting, and that a masked gunman had shot adults in the school.

"My daughter's teacher is my hero," Lebinski said. "She locked all the kids in a closet and that saved their lives."

According to Lebinski, the school had been on lockdown but police started leading out children and faculty members by class, and several children had blood on their clothing as they were led out.

It isn't clear how many children were still inside the school. Parents continue to surround the area, seeking news of their children.

Christine Wilford, a parent of a 7-year-old boy at the school, told Patch that her son was out of the school and safe with her husband. A woman standing next to Wilford burst into tears, saying her own son was still inside.

Danbury Hospital has confirmed to TV reporters that three patients have been transported by ambulance.

The Hartford Courant is reporting multiple injured parties, saying a shooter had been in the building’s main office and an individual in one area had “numerous gunshot wounds,” police said.

State police reported shortly after 12 p.m. that officials from the state Medical Examiner's Office were en route to the scene.

At a fire station near the school that's serving as a staging area, a woman was being wheeled on a gurney as a helicopter circled overhead and armed officials from multiple state and federal agencies moved beyond a cordoned-off area swarmed by parents. Dozens of parents could be seen walking to the school as motor vehicle traffic snarled the area of Dickinson Drive.

Marilyn Gudsnuk, 52, of nearby Southbury said she heard 10 to 12 gunshots around 9:40 a.m. Gudsnuk, who attended the elementary school herself as a childhood, said she is taking care of a 91-year-old resident who lives across the street from the school.

"I took off running into the house," she said. "I didn't know what was happening. It was scary."

Asked whether she imagined a shooting could happen at her former school, Gudsnuk said, "Never in a million years."

"I just pray for these people," she said. "The anguish they are going through. And all because someone's not right in the head."

One man who identified himself as a cable worker and declined to give his name told Patch that he was up on a utility pole at the time of the shooting. When he heard shots, the man said he thought it was hunters, but then in a few minutes emergency response vehicles sped beneath his ladder.

Susan Koomar December 15, 2012 at 12:23 AM
KidsPeace offers help for families on how to cope with the Connecticut tragedy: http://bethlehem.patch.com/blog_posts/kidspeace-can-help-families-process-school-shooting

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