Officials Piece Together Shooting in Newtown, Connecticut

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NBC Nightly News
Lester Holt/Pete Williams
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Video News Report
NBCUniversal Media, LLC.
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Investigators are piecing together a timeline of the shooting at Newtown Elementary School in Sandy Hook, Connecticut. Officials say the event began with the shooter allegedly killing his mother while she slept before driving to the school.



"Officials Piece Together Shooting in Newtown, Connecticut." Pete Williams, correspondent. NBC Nightly News. NBCUniversal Media. 16 Dec. 2012. NBC Learn. Web. 8 September 2018.


Williams, P. (Reporter), & Holt, L. (Anchor). (2012, December 16). Officials Piece Together Shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. [Television series episode]. NBC Nightly News. Retrieved from


"Officials Piece Together Shooting in Newtown, Connecticut" NBC Nightly News, New York, NY: NBC Universal, 12/16/2012. Accessed Sat Sep 8 2018 from NBC Learn:


Officials Piece Together Shooting in Newton, Connecticut

LESTER HOLT, anchor:

We want to turn now to late developments in the investigation, as a clearer timeline of what happened during the rampage is beginning to emerge. Our Justice Correspondent Pete Williams is in our Washington newsroom tonight. Pete, good evening.

PETE WILLIAMS, reporting:

Lester, there has been lots of conflicting information in official channels about exactly what happened and so much remains unknown, but tonight, we believe we have a good idea of how these events unfolded. The horrifying sequence, officials say begins Friday morning, they don’t know what time, when Adam Lanza takes hundreds of rounds of ammunition and four firearms from his gun enthusiast mother, and uses one of them to kill her, Nancy Lanza, shooting her several times, perhaps as she lay sleeping. Before leaving they say, he damages his computer. Investigators are now trying to retrieve what was stored. Just before 9:30, he loads the guns and ammunition into his mother's car and drives the roughly five miles to Sandy Hook Elementary. It's a place he knows, officials say, from his childhood, though why he goes there to kill remains unanswered.

GOVERNOR DANNEL MALLOY (D-Connecticut, file): He had a relationship to the school, had attended there. At least that’s what I’m led to believe. And-- but-- but beyond that no, we-- we really don’t know a whole lot.

WILLIAMS: Relatives say his mother once volunteered there, though there’s apparently no record of that. He’s carrying two handguns and a Bushmaster AR-15-style rifle with several high-capacity magazines, each able to hold 30 rounds. The school door is locked, state officials say, so Adam Lanza blasts his way in with the rifle, shattering a window. The sound of the shots alarms Principal Dawn Hochsprung and school psychologist, Mary Sherlach, who come running. They are immediately killed. Lanza, investigators say, turns left, away from the school auditorium, toward the kindergarten and first-grade classrooms. He passes one room and heads to the classroom of substitute teacher, Lauren Rousseau. She and the 14 children inside are shot and killed. From there he heads to Victoria Soto’s classroom. She and six children inside are shot and killed, but 7 others, hidden by their teacher in a closet, are spared. Two other teachers, Rachel Davino and Anne Marie Murphy are also killed. The horror is over in 10 minutes, officials believe. Lanza shoots himself in the head as police storm in.

LIEUTENANT PAUL VANCE (Connecticut State Police): The Bushmaster was used, as it was explained yesterday and in the school, in its entirety and the handgun was used to take his own life.

WILLIAMS: Authorities say although Adam Lanza fired his rifle hundreds of times, he had more ammunition to keep going, stopping only when he heard and saw the police coming for him. Lester.

HOLT: Pete, thanks.