The Free Press, Mankato, MN

State, national news

December 16, 2012

Evidence shows deadlier plan in Connecticut school shooting

(Continued)

NEWTOWN, Conn. —

"I can't imagine how hard this experience must be for you," he said.

The gunman's father, Peter Lanza, issued a statement relating his own family's anguish in the aftermath.

"Our family is grieving along with all those who have been affected by this enormous tragedy. No words can truly express how heartbroken we are," he said. "We are in a state of disbelief and trying to find whatever answers we can. We too are asking why. ... Like so many of you, we are saddened, but struggling to make sense of what has transpired."

The rifle used was a Bushmaster .223-caliber, according to an official with knowledge of the investigation who was not authorized to speak about it and talked on condition of anonymity. The gun is commonly seen at competitions and was the type used in the 2002 sniper killings in the Washington, D.C., area. Also found in the school were two handguns, a Glock 10 mm and a Sig Sauer 9 mm.

A law enforcement official said Saturday that authorities were investigating fresh leads that could reveal more about the lead-up to the shooting. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

Ginger Colbrun, spokeswoman for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, said earlier there was no evidence Lanza was involved in gun clubs or had trained for the shooting. When reached later in the day and asked whether that was still true, she said, "We're following any and all leads related to this individual and firearms."

Law enforcement officials have said they have found no note or manifesto from Lanza of the sort they have come to expect after murderous rampages such as the Virginia Tech bloodbath in 2007 that left 33 people dead.

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