A Connecticut Fairfield County elementary school is bracing for impact following an open fire shooting on Friday that has left the gunman and a confirmed 20 others dead on the scene. Numerous students were also shot and survivors are currently being reunited with their parents and caregivers.
Witnesses at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown say the incident began at approximately 9:40am.
According to the Hartford Courant:
ABC News reported through federal, local officials that more than a dozen people, including children, were shot and killed.
Police were still searching the school at 11 a.m., and police dogs had been brought in. Around noon, the triage area was broken down, stretchers were taken away and the SWAT team left the building.
Shortly after 9:40 a.m., police reported that a shooter was in the main office of the school. A person in one room had “numerous gunshot wounds,” police said.
Groups of students — some crying, some holding hands — were being escorted away from the school by their teachers. Some students were still in the school at 10:30 a.m., parents said.
School and local emergency officials are accounting for the children, who will be released to their parents to get them home. A staging area has been set up at the Sandy Hook fire department, directly in front of the school.
Frustrated parents are trying to get information from officials, who are still actively searching the school.
Eight-year-old Alexis Wasik, a third-grader at the school, said police were checking everybody inside the school before they were escorted to the firehouse.
"We had to walk with a partner," she said.
Newtown Patch is reporting:
Officials in Newtown say they're trying to reunite parents with their children in the wake of a shocking multiple shooting at an elementary school in the town’s Sandy Hook neighborhood.
First Selectman Pat Llodra told 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.
Sandy Hook Elementary School has canceled all afternoon kindergarten classes for the remainder of the day. The school holds close to 700 students.
Reports of a second shooter are still unconfirmed.
UPDATE: The brother of the shooter was found dead in Hoboken, New Jersey.
UPDATE: Ryan Lanza's mother was a teacher at the school. She was killed.
UPDATE: President Obama will address the nation at 3:15pm ET.
UPDATE: According to MyLife, Ryan Lanza was born in 1988 and lived in Sandy Hook, Connecticut.
UPDATE: The shooter's name was Ryan Lanza. CORRECTION: Media reports have Ryan as the brother of the shooter. Shooter is reported to be Adam Lanza.
UPDATE: Fatalities close to 30. 18-20 deaths were children. Exact death toll not yet released.
UPDATE: The entire school was searched. The shooter was in his 20's and was deceased inside the building. He did have connections to the school. All parents have been notified. The scene is secure, according to local police.
A shooting at a Connecticut elementary school Friday left 27 people dead, including 18 children, an official said.The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation was still under way. Another official, speaking on condition of anonymity for the same reason, said the gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown was killed and apparently had two guns.
A law enforcement official in Washington said the attacker was a 20-year-old man with ties to the school and that one of the guns was a .223-caliber rifle. The official also said that New Jersey State Police were searching a location in that state in connection with the shootings. That official spoke on the condition of anonymity because the source was not authorized to speak on the record about the developing criminal investigation. (AP)
UPDATE: CNN has reported at least 10 children are dead.
UPDATE: Numbers tally close to 20 dead, many of them are reportedly children.