Previous Post
Next Post

 Newtown police who responded to the Sandy Hook spree killing (courtesy Karsten Moran for The New York Times)

The mainstream media unleashed a maelstrom of misinformation in the immediate aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School spree killing. Early reports said Adam Lanza used two handguns; he’d left a Bushmaster AR in his Honda’s trunk. There was talk of a second gunman who’d escaped into the nearby woods. Neither report was correct. Fog of war and all that. But after a high-profile news event unfolds the public needs journalism that separates truth from fiction. Especially if the story has a huge impact on public policy. It’s been over a month since the Newtown massacre. It’s time we heard details of exactly what happened. The New York Times (also available here) provides a glimpse into the details of this heinous crime from five responding officers. The account answers some questions and raises others . . .

Officer William Chapman was in the Newtown police station along with Officer McGowan and others when the first reports of shots and breaking glass came in early on the day of the massacre. The school was more than two miles away. They traveled up Route 25, then right onto Church Hill Road. “We drove as fast as we’ve ever driven,” Officer McGowan said.

They made it in under three minutes, arriving in the parking lot while gunfire could still be heard.

“I got out of the car and grabbed my rifle and it stopped for second,” Officer Chapman said. “But then we heard more popping. You could tell it was rifle fire. And it was up so close, it sounded like it was coming from outside. So we were all looking around for someone to shoot back at.”

So, contrary to speculation, the Newtown police didn’t take 20 minutes to get to the scene. It was a three-minute drive.

As the officers converged on the building, the gunfire stopped again. Officers Chapman and Scott Smith made their way to the front entrance. It was here, only minutes earlier, that a rail-thin 20-year-old named Adam Lanza, armed with a .223 Bushmaster semiautomatic carbine, two semiautomatic pistols and hundreds of rounds of ammunition, had blasted his way through the glass.

“Hundreds” is not what I’d call a precise term. My sources tell me Lanza shot a little more than 70 rounds from the Bushmaster during his homicidal rampage. Given that ammunition magazine capacity is under legislative scrutiny, it would be useful to know exactly how many rounds Lanza carried in how many magazines. Soon.

Leonard Penna, a school resource officer who had raced to the scene from his office at the Newtown Middle School, entered the school with Sgt. Aaron Bahamonde and Lt. Christopher Vanghele, through a side door that leads to the boiler room, he said. Officer McGowan and two other officers entered through a locked rear door. One of them knocked out the glass with his rifle butt so the rest of the officers could get in.

What’s the precise timeline here? When did the other two officers arrive? Did Sgt. Bagamonde and Lt. Vanghele wait for those officers? If so, how long did they wait? Were they in communication with Officers Chapman and Smith?

Was the School Resource Officer armed? With what? When did Sgt. Bagamonde and Lt. Vanghele arrive on scene relative to Officers Chapman and Smith? What weapons were the police carrying?

None of that information is forthcoming. The rest of the article chronicles some of the horrific sights and sounds the police encountered on that terrible day. And concludes with a cynical appeal for cash which, I suspect, motivated the Times’ get-together in the first place.

The officers and their union are reaching out to state lawmakers, hoping to expand workers’ compensation benefits to include those who witness horrific violence

“Our concern from the beginning has been the effects of PTSD,” said Eric Brown, a lawyer for the union that represents the Newtown police. “We estimate it is probably going to be 12 to 15 Newtown officers who are going to be dealing with that, for the remainder of their careers, we imagine, from what we’ve been told by professionals who deal with PTSD.”

Our hearts go out to everyone involved in this senseless tragedy. However, if we are to learn from the Sandy Hook massacre, we must know all the details surrounding the police response. We also need to know the school’s lockdown procedures and how, when, what and where they were implemented.

The failure of the media, politicians and police to provide those details in the face of the enormous storm of controversy the killings have created dishonors the memory of the killer’s victims.

Previous Post
Next Post


  1. Has anyone ever noticed the more contentious the political theater perpetrated by politicians and the media, the greater the uptick in unstable people going nuts and dealing damage to society? Begetting more contentious theater?

    And every time damage is dealt, we are all hurt, we all lose something, except for the politicians and media who have new fodder to fuel their theatrics, ratings, fundraising, and advertising revenues. Except also for the selfishly self-righteous waiting for an opportunity to publicly indignant to show us all their virtue. People eagerly jump on any new place to point their fingers, each time forestalling the need to maybe point them back at themselves. This is self-reinforcing and escalating.

    We exchange the hard-won satisfaction of wielding our individual powers for creation for the ease of flexing the same muscles for destruction, persecution. We are animals surrounded by the fruits of what can be, eagerly consuming our own bodies. Because to stretch a little bit and reach around for something outside of our current self-destructive habits… well that’s just too much work. Too much personal responsibility.

    • I don’t know if it is more, or that the media latches on to something and tries to squeeze it for as much as they can. Note that when there is aircraft accident that all of sudden we here about 3 or 4 or more at the same time? These thing probably go on all the time, it is just a matter of what they choose to report and the ratings they will get.

      If the tree falls in the forest and you don’t hear it, did the tree really fall?

      Many people believe if they did not hear it or read it, then it probably did not happen.

      The thing I hate the most is the knee-jerk reactions and poor follow ups. In the Newtown case in particular, the details of the case are lacking and I hope it is because they are doing work but I cannot but help believe it is because they want some legislation passed first.

      • I agree. We don’t even know the details of the Aurora shooting. We know his drum jammed and he switched weapons, but I haven’t been able to find how many deaths or injuries were caused by the rifle or the shotgun. We don’t even know why he did it, or why he says he did it. Kind of important information to have to reinforce or debunk an argument over how best to prevent similar occurrences, especially when using this tragedy to further an agenda.

        • Regarding some of these crazy mass shootings and why they did it. I don’t think getting their reasons will bw a problem, I think it is that the reasons they have will be uninformative. Like if the reason is “my dog told me to do it” or that “money is language” or some kind of crap like that, we won’t be fulfilled by the “answer” and seek others where they may not exist. We can’t close a narrative with such answers, so we need to finish the story by waging war on something like gun rights.

  2. I’d hardly call this a detailed account, the more I hear about it, the more confused the story gets

    • Exactly. So, they were on the scene in 3 minutes. That’s good, perhaps even excellent response time. But what else happened? How long was Lanza shooting for? How long did it take to make entry into the school? How long did it take them to get to the scene of the final action?

      I am honestly wondering if there wasn’t some sort of communications screw-up here. I’m not blaming the cops, either… fog of war.

      My prediction is that we’ll find out that the teacher in question screwed up and didn’t lock the door.

      • They were on the scene 3 minutes from when they got the report that sent them to the scene. It is not at all clear how long the scenario was unfolding prior to that–Lanza’s break-in, his first shots, and so on.

        Once in a “feminist self-defense” class I was told that firearms were not an option for self-defense because had I “ever read even one news story about a gun saving a person’s life”?

  3. …I don’t believe any of this crap either….for example..where is the video footage of the shooting? Where is…and what was… the video footage of the guys being chased into the woods and at least one being retrieved…and paraded by witnesses as he exclaimed his innocence? Did those things not happen? How did the rifle supposedly used by the shooter end up in the trunk of the car? It all sounds like BS to me…..


    RJ O’Guillory
    Webster Groves-The Life of an Insane Family

    • You’re confused by the early reports mentioned in the post.

      No one was chased into the woods. The police found a Remington 870 shotgun in the trunk of his car. Lanza used a Bushmaster AR to shoot his victims and a Glock to kill himself.

      I’ve not heard of any school video.

      • You’re wrong – someone WAS chased into the woods. And he was apprehended. There is footage of this on the internet. The explanation is that he was the father of a child in the school or some such nonsense.

      • There is an eye witness on camera relating a story of a handcuffed man (not Lanza) being walked away and being put into the front of a squad car. The witness reports the hand-cuffed man professing his innocence as he was walked by the witness. Who the hell was that guy? Why have we heard no follow up? If that wasn’t a chase through the woods, then what was it? Why have so few survivors been heard from?

        Tinfoil-hat aside – there is way more going on here. My desire for information is nowhere near placated here.

        • I saw the same report. I also picked up on the person being interviewed stating that the individual was placed in the front of the car, as you mentioned. Note; the front of the squad car. All tin-foil aside, that is not SOP for any department…anywhere…

          The take away from this, in my opinion, is that we will never get the full story, because, as another poster mentioned, the facts are being swept aside in favor of an agenda. Crying shame, if you ask me.

        • Badger – your statement leads me to believe you’re more interested in indulging in conspiracy fantasy than seeing the truth. A quick Google search, or simply clicking the link directly above your comment would have given you answers.

        • Your link leads me to believe that you are more interested in being a sarcastic ass than anything else. Also, let me add that none of those websites come close to accredited news sources. BeforeItsNews? Really? Nice try.

          It’s not fantasy that a suspect at the scene of any crime is not placed in the FRONT of a squad car. Small town cops or not…it just ISN’T done.

      • The video I saw of a long gun being removed from the trunk of a car showed an officer working the action with a charging/bolt handle on the right side of the receiver. Last time I checked, neither an AR nor a Remington 870 had a charging/bolt handle on the right side of the receiver. I have heard some reports that it was a Saiga 12. The weapon is all black in the video and does appear to have a pistol grip. The shell that is ejected appears to be very large, almost like a shotgun shell. To me, it does appear to be an semi-auto shotgun of some kind.

        However, this video does not prove that the weapon being removed from the car in the video was the only weapon recovered from the car.

        • This exchange is an example of how little is known about what really happened. I guarantee most of the facts and a pretty close time line are known by government officials but aren’t being released. And why? There’s no prosecution waiting to be held. There’s nothing to “taint” by releasing the information. It all stinks to high heaven.

        • I agree. It appears to be Saiga 12 (because of the action and the size of the magazine) with a dragunov style grip/stock.

          We know the info of everything is being withheld to assist in the Dem. political agenda. No conspiracy theory, just witholding info that the public deserves since it is being used to guide the future.

        • I mistrust everything I read in the newsmedia until I can fact check it myself, and have felt this way since the first wrenching reports from Newtown.

          However let’s not also forget that a lot of people are staying mum about a lot of facts till the lawyer sharks finish circling. Which will probably be for years now. In my experience in public service, when big things happen, even public servants are required to keep their mouths shut while these private sector litigation/investigation matters get sorted out. In some cases the penalties for speaking out are even worse than the ones levied on the malefactors.

  4. I like articles on TTAG but could you please stop mentioning the killers name(not only this one but all of them) Since that is what the killer wants: infamy/fame.

    • I have to agree, please no pictures or names of the shooters, no need to give them what they are seeking.

    • The Greeks tried that with Herostratus, and they knew for sure he wanted infamy. It doesn’t work and it’s detrimental to the truth.

    • Discussing the wants of a dead person is senseless. Though I agree giving him notoriety only fuels the next person to fill his shoes, I disagree with the sentiment of not doing it because it is giving him gratification as he is no longer able to feel gratification…

  5. I have been disturbed, for some time, about the lack of information on this investigation. As a retired LEO, who was both trained in crime scene investigation and served as a detective, the notion that many of the facts of this crime have not yet been released is unacceptable. While it still may be taking some time to finish digging into the shooter’s background, the actual crime scene facts – how many rounds, what guns, etc. – which are being used to push new restrictive laws, are all know to law enforcement. There is no one to prosecute, as both the shooter and his mother, who is the only other person directly to blame, are dead. Why the news lock-down ? We don’t need the photographs of the scene, but some real facts would be nice.

  6. All politics aside, I can’t imagine what must be going through a man’s head as he arrives at a grade school full of children from which there is the sound of gunfire. I get a knot in my gut just imagining it

    • I would like to imagine that he thought he should get in there, even without backup, and take care of business.

      • Ever since Columbine LE are trained nationwide on how to deal with active shooters. Without going into details I’ll just say that waiting around isn’t part of that training…

  7. Given that ammunition magazine capacity is under legislative scrutiny, it would be useful to know exactly how many rounds Lanza carried in how many magazines. Soon.

    Bullshyt. No, it will NOT be relevant to “the debate” because I refuse to have magazine capacity limits foisted upon me because of the actions of a madman.

    I’m disappointed, RF. You know better than this. Tying the future of our 2A rights to the size of the magazines used by Lanza is EXACTLY what the confiscators would love.

    This is wrong and I hope you will consider revising the article.

    • I understand your frustration with that comment. Please don’t take it to mean that I believe your gun rights depend on someone else’s behavior. BUT . . .

      Lanza’s rate of fire or number of reloads could provide a counter to some of the propaganda used against gun rights. We need to use whatever ammunition we can. So to speak.

      • Relying on the details of a single incident like this is to succumb to the anecdote-driven emotionalism used by the confiscators to whip people into hysterics.

        If you were making the argument based on information from multiple incidents, including average rounds fired per magazine, capacity, etc, you’d be closer — but we do not have a statistically meaningful number of incidents compared to lawful gun use.

        Better to decouple the debate from anecdotal analysis and focus on the big picture. Any argument based on Lanza’s actions is inherently flawed, whether it looks to help us or hurt us.

        • I agree. I also feel demanding inside information on the investigation, or debating what type of firearm was used, is not only fruitless to our goals but makes us look like fruitcakes in the process.

      • I agree, we need the facts, with as little clouding the truth as possible to have an honest discussion with the anti’s.

        Columbine happened during the first AWB, did they use “legal capacity” mags during that shooting? Kind of along the same lines.

        MAC (and others I’m sure) has a video up showing how little difference mag capacity will make, the real problem as I know everyone reading this will prob agree, is the kill zone created by legislation in the first place.

      • RF, please check the spam filter for my reply.

        Not arguing we don’t need the truth: I assert that the truth of one incident should not be used to make laws.

      • Yeah, at least knowing what happened can give a base of arguments or counter arguments. Some say the (unreleased) police report shows mags left over with 15 or more rounds left in them, meaning only 10-15 rounds were used per magazine. No mystery why that information has not been made public or resurfaced.

        I want the official report. That will have all the details, including timings, round counts, communications, individuals present, their gear, their movements, all of which are useful. Unfortunately, useful information isn’t the goal, as we can clearly see by the title “Horrors of Newtown Shooting Scene”, this is another fear mongering piece.

    • So, what if the truth is he had 10 round mags? That information is being held back as they argue in CT to limit mags. I want to know the truth and that is what RF is saying. The whole 30 round mag thing goes out the door if the shooter used 10 round mags. The fear by many is that will be the case and gun owners rail roaded on BS info. While our right should not be restricted, the info should be clear. What was the round count? How many did he really have? If it is much less than what is being reported, laws are being passed without the correct information.

      • If he had used 10 round mags, that would be used to leverage us down to 3 round mags. I’m sure there’s some antis somewhere desperately hoping he did.

      • It wasn’t even his right, he applied for a handgun and was denied, and as pointed out there should have been an investigation after that application was denied but it never happened. The incident was illegal at every level. The location was even an option because it had no active defenses, which contrasts with Utah’s policy on school defense where there has not been a single shooting.

        Now why should my rights be diminished because someone else is a psychopath that will stop at nothing to reach their goal? Moreover, why should my ability to defend my family and property from criminals and those psychopaths be diminished? Some don’t want to take any active measures to defend themselves or their children why do we all have to be forced into the same situation?

        • The reports I remember from the gun store was he was in and wanted to buy a handgun but left when he found out he’d have to go through the waiting period.

          So my guess is:
          He couldn’t wait, school was going to be out for winter break and if the other reports are true, his mother was going to have him committed. If he was going to buy a gun then it appears he didn’t plan originally killing his mom or couldn’t get easy access to her fire arms. My bet he was going to kill the kids and himself as a big FU to mom.

    • I agree, on a philosophical level, AG. I think, however, that one must wonder why we haven’t heard many details about the event, beyond an AR being used. Are there facts that would prove inconvenient to a capacity-limit argument?
      The whole argument is predicated on mag-changes limiting carnage. How many mag changes did Lanza do?

      • If you accept the premise of the disarmament advocates that the capacity of magazines used in the incident has ANYTHING to do with your rights, you’re halfway to losing the debate already.

        It’s the exact same logic used to argue against pistol grips, barrel lengths, rail-mounted forward grips, etc. Once you stipulate that magazine capacity is up for debate, you have agreed that your rights should be limited based on the actions of a madman.

        I know I’m coming off as much more absolutist than usual on this one, but that’s because I’m approaching this in terms of what wins debates, not purely my positions on 2A matters. He who defines the terms defines the debate, and the field tilts in his favor. I do NOT like letting the other side define the terms of our debate.

        On a total tangent, is it just me or is the cop on the far right of the picture one seriously big motherfscker?

        • AG, he’s the guy that gets cats out of trees. It ain’t PC to use a shotgun to remove them from the limbs and people get tired of looking for ladders.

    • Not willing to speak for RF, who has personally responded, but I think the point is that if he managed to fire 70 or so rounds while reloading 10 or 20 round magazines it becomes foolish to argue that the round capacity of magazines has any impact whatsoever on the activities of a spree killer.

      As has been discussed many times, a shooter restricted to low capacity magazines will simply carry more magazines. An AR-15 is specifically designed to facilitate quick and easy magazine changes under stressful conditions. Even a relatively incompetent (or mentally deranged) shooter can drop the mag and insert a new one in a matter of seconds. Seventy rounds from 10-round magazines? add about one minute for the 7 magazine swaps, tops. Our argument is and must be that the capacity of the magazines is entirely irrelevant to the discussion. Does anyone really think the carnage would have been less severe had he carried the shotgun instead? Probably five rounds on board, maybe seven. More damage per shot fired, even though reload time is longer. Still no one willing or able to confront the active shooter while he is reloading. Magazine size does not matter when their is no one who can fight back anyway.

      Anyone posting or requiring a “Gun Free Zone” should be prosecuted as an accessory in the event of a shooting within that zone.

  8. The frustrating thing is all the details of the event were known and documented by the police pretty quickly after, let alone almost two months later. It’s irresponsible to allow the MSM and politicians to continue on with false information that they are basing policy on when they have all the facts at their disposal.

  9. I’m not 9/11 or JFK dogmatic yet, but I’m scared of the possibility I’m going to have to label Sandy Hook staged. If it was we have more coming. What will the media do if the next op is at a maternity ward or PICU?

    • Tin foil? Check. Flame-retardant suit? Check. Okay…

      I agree with you. The preceding shootings were, in my opinion, a gradual increase to bring the topic of “gun control” to the table. A mall is a popular destination for holiday shopping, but the increase in online sales this year made that less traumatic. A movie theater is frequented by many, but with the proliferation of Redbox and Netflix, paying $10 a ticket times two (who really goes to the theater alone?) plus food and drink and gas makes the movie theater almost…passe… Sheik Temple? Who has one of those in their town? But everyone can relate to a first-grade classroom. Everyone. Following the attack, I myself said to a close friend that the only target more emotionally charged would be a maternity ward.

      Do I think that this a great big conspiracy? Nope. As another poster pointed out, conspiracies are performed in secret, and this has been very in-your-face; I don’t subscribe to the Bilderberg Cabal concept. Do I think that this is the dirty side of a long running agenda? I am not 100% committed to that, but having seen the use of private contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan to perform politically unpopular actions and cross-border raids, I would not be shocked. The fact that a good majority of people will turn a blind eye to terrible events because they don’t want to believe that such things are possible only cements this idea in my mind (see; Holocaust deniers circa 1945-present).

      Per JFK: that was going to be my thesis before the big sandbox called…ballistics alone tells me it wasn’t Oswald. Just sayin’…

    • Anyone that believes Sandy Hook, or 9/11 for that matter, is the result of a conspiracy by the government is seriously out of touch with reality and lacking in emotional maturity and intelligence. That is all.

      • Blinkypete….

        …you are either an uninformed soul…or a shill, placed on this site to guide away legitimate inquiry and downplay the anger that has finally begun to show in America….but if this is what you actually believe…

        ……”Anyone that believes Sandy Hook, or 9/11 for that matter, is the result of a conspiracy by the government is seriously out of touch with reality and lacking in emotional maturity and intelligence. That is all.”

        …then, at a minimum, you are clueless…for if you think those three steel-framed buildings collapsed into their own footprint, at free-fall-speed… due to airplane fuel explosions…and the “terrorist’s” passport just happened to survive all that and be found conveniently on top of the rubble the next day…if you buy all the crap they have sold…including JFK, 911, RFK, MLK…you really do not know what you are talking about with regard to the degree of corruption present in the US Government.

        How do I know? Well, I spent over two decades as a “federally protected whistle-blower” working for US DoD all over the world…and I witnessed and reported corruption that you would not believe…so you really have no idea of what you speak…and are simply blowing smoke out your ass…trying to sound intelligent…

        …when it seems you have no real world experience what-so-ever? Try working in the corruption up to your eyeballs for almost 25 years…try doing the “right thing” and see how fast you get chewed up…you do not have a clue, and should stop making statements that your ass cannot back up…either from a knowledge perspective, or an experience perspective…


        RJ O’Guillory
        Webster Groves-The Life of an Insane Family

      • For what it’s worth, as of 1978 (House Select Committee on Assassinations) it is the official position of the United States government that President Kennedy was most likely killed as the result of a conspiracy rather than a lone gunman.

  10. The whole truth and nothing but the truth.
    Someone is covering something up.
    The actions of the police, the media and the politicians do not pass the smell test.
    But we live in Obamaville now and nothing passes the smell test!!!!!

  11. The article never stated that the shooter fired hundreds of rounds. It said the guy was armed with hundreds of rounds. Please try to notice actual words before you raise questions.
    How many times have you, personally, been shot at? The confusion and adrenaline I’ve experienced has never allowed me to notice how many rounds were fired by anybody. I also didn’t look at my watch to see precisely what time it was. You are basically questioning their honesty and honor without any basis. If you started this line of crap with me, I’d punch you in the head. Please show a little bit of honor yourself.

    • Robin, at all shootings, the officers put out those little cones for each spent casing, which tells them how many rounds fired. But, in the what six weeks since the shooting, there has been no mention of how many rounds were fired or how many mags he had and did he empty each one before reloading. Where I’m from and probably like everyone on here, when there is a local shooting and the news media does a segment on the local news, they always mention how many rounds were fired, why not here!

      And it was the officers that came forward with the timeline not someone trying to discredit their story. So for you to get all “Oh No You Didn’t” on those that question their story, is a little over the top!

      • The number of rounds fired, as reported, is generally an estimate. In this case we do have that number- 79. If you can’t find the information you’re looking for it’s generally because you aren’t looking hard enough, not because it’s being hidden from you.

    • If you started this line of crap with me, I’d punch you in the head.

      If you punch someone in the head, he might have to shoot you. But don’t let that stop you, tough guy.

    • “How many times have you, personally, been shot at?”

      Personally, enough times to stop counting.
      CSI SOP is to count the number of rounds fired. Yet, that information has not been publicly released. EMS weren’t allowed on seen (“The scene is too graphic”), Police first responders ID’d the weapons as two handguns, but the ME ID’d it as an AR…who would know better (Not to mention the ballistics argument, I.E. a high-velocity round like the 5.56×45 would be more likely to give a through-and-through wound and not fragment)? And with the media meme of “what bleeds, leads” how did they miss the political and emotional coup of filming a line of body bags being carried out of the school? I’m not suggesting that I wanted to see that, I just find it odd that they will show graphic footage of Gaddafi being beaten and shot, but black bags are too much for our viewers? Yeah…okay…

      The highest form of patriotism is reasoned skepticism. Maybe you just have a hard time grasping that your government is possible of such deeds. If so, you are in good company, but that doesn’t make you right.

      • You don’t have “reasoned skepticism”, you have a conspiracy theory based on a preexisting political belief. That’s a text book pre determined conclusion right there.

        Oh, and most of the supporting evidence you prattled off right there was pure bullshyte, by the way. Just sayin.

        • Text book pre-determined conclusion? Hardly. Enough knowledge to know what is or is not the fact? Yes.

          Pure crap? Hardly. Having fired enough rounds of 5.56×45 into a living medium to know what the results should be? Yep.

          You haven’t refuted any of what I said. Simply declared it all invalid. Currently, you have less credibility in this argument than I. Have I spent a majority of my time researching this? No, as of late I have had more pressing responsibilities. But, I still know how to look at something and decide if it is or isn’t what it appears to be.

        • You use quotes as if they’re direct but provide no sources, you confuse the police with the media (they’re the ones who reported the two handgun thing, not the police), you rehash roundly debunked gibberish and claim that your generic knowledge of firepower somehow gives you insight into this situation (while also whining that you don’t have enough info).

          Text book conspiracy theorists think. You don’t have to spend the majority of your time researching it, you just have to do actual research and then come to logical conclusions rather than seeking out material that supports your predetermined conclusion.

        • Sigh. You need help with reading comprehension and critical thinking. But go ahead, keep slinging insults; that makes your position totally unassailable.

          You know, before I stop replying to your posts, both now and in the future, here is a bit of advice that I doubt you’ll take. Introspection. It’s a wonderful way to address the deep seated whatever it is that you have goin’ on. Good luck out there; it’s a scary place.

  12. I have a problem with the “under three minutes” statement. If the school was over two miles away (let’s say 2.5) and let’s also say that the officers were sitting in their patrol cars with the engines running, and they supposedly got there in less than three minutes, would they not have had to travel at over seventy (70) mph through rural roads and streets to get there in less than three (3) minutes?

    Plus, as someone else has stated, they originally thought someone was outside shooting, and were looking OUTSIDE for a shooter. Where is their timeframe for when they finally entered the building?

    • They never needed to hit 70mph. They just needed to average higher than 50mph.

      At an average of 50mph, they would’ve traveled 2.5 miles in exactly 3 minutes.

      • DonS, I’m not a math major, far from it, but just a simple equation of going 60 mph for 2.5 miles would be 2.5 minutes. So if they traveled 2.5 miles in less than three minutes they would have had to maintain a speed of well over 70 mph on city and side streets along with any intersections that would require them to slow down to accomplish that.

        Math majors or anyone who wants to jump in and do the math for us!

        • Don’t need to be a math major (though, as it happens, I was a math major). My son’s 5th grade arithmetic works:

          3 minutes = 1/20th of an hour = .05 hours.

          2.5 miles divided by .05 hours = 50 miles per hour.

          Averaging a speed *faster* than 50mph, however slightly, yields an arrival in less than 3 minutes.

        • “60 mph for 2.5 miles would be 2.5 minutes. So if they traveled 2.5 miles in less than three minutes they would have had to maintain a speed of well over 70 mph ”

          Yes, at 60mph, traveling 2.5 miles = 2.5 minutes. If you INCREASE the available time (say, to 3 minutes), you DECREASE the required average speed.

          If you have to go 60 miles in one hour, you need to average 60mph. If you increase the available time to 2 hours, your average speed requirement decreases to 30mph.

          D = S x T
          D: distance
          S: average speed
          T: time
          For a given distance, speed is inversely related to time.

        • DonS, I think we’re kind of on the same page here. I guess my calculations and theory are based on “over two miles away and arriving in under three minutes” And having to maintain whatever speed is needed to accomplish that would be difficult to do, and adds skepticism to my believing their timeline! That’s all I meant….

        • “‘over two miles away and arriving in under three minutes’ And having to maintain whatever speed is needed to accomplish that would be difficult to do, and adds skepticism to my believing their timeline! That’s all I meant….”

          I’m not at all skeptical about their travel time. If the destination was “over two miles away” and they arrived “in under three minutes”, they only needed to *average* some small amount higher than 40mph. As D decreases toward 2 miles and T increases toward 3 minutes, S decreases toward 40 miles per hour.

          The question is actual “response time”. That is, from first call to 911 until LEOs were on-scene and ready to confront the attacker. Actual travel time is only a small part of that.

        • Dude what on earth are you (Taurus) talking about? You’re confusing yourself. You said it correctly in the first place:

          “60 mph for 2.5 miles would be 2.5 minutes. ”

          So it DOES take less than 3 minutes to go that distance at 60 mph. Like you said correctly, if you go 60 you will go 2.5 miles in 2.5 minutes. If the goal is to make it that distance in less than 3 minutes, then goal accomplished WITH an extra 30 seconds to spare. That means you could go even SLOWER and still make it there in 3 minutes or less. What are you not getting here? If you go faster, it takes less time. If you go slower, it takes more time. Since 60 mph gets them there SOONER than 3 minutes, they could SLOW DOWN and still make it.

          How can you say that 60 mph gets you there in 2.5 minutes so in order to make it in less than 3 you need to go at least 70? Makes no sense. Clearly 60 does the trick, and is already faster than needed.

        • I still can’t believe you, um, special persons spawned two full pages of posts on how to calculate speed vs. distance. {shakes head}

        • Which part is hard to believe? That someone didn’t understand grade-school math, or that others took the time to try to explain it?

        • That it took you guys this many lines of text in this many posts to get it sorted out. 🙂

          For the avoidance of doubt, it’s not like I pay a tax on every use of the page-down key. I just found it amusing how long the thread dragged on.

        • Personally, I don’t really care how much time, effort, or lines of text it takes. I’ll expend as much of those as is necessary to explain the truth.

          Kind of like I like to do with information regarding firearms.

          I don’t find it amusing that it took so long to explain that as time increases, average speed decreases. To me, that’s sad, not funny.

        • And not to beat a dead horse. But the point I was trying to make was, that yes from point A to point B could be made if there were no intersections, and other traffic to slow down their travel time. But I just don’t believe their timeframe of under three minutes.

          Sorry if I got all of your panties in a bunch over simple math!

  13. This isn’t meant to be a slight to the police, but the “3 minute response time” stat seams like fuzzy math to me. It’s sort of implying that they got there 180 seconds after the perp was either first spotted, or fired the first shot… which is obviously not true, since it takes time for someone to find a phone, dial 911, relay the info, dispatch to relay it to the officers, officers to get to their cars, and finally arrive on the scene.

    I’m sure to some this may sound tediously detailed, but the whole point is it, the perp had much more than 3 minutes to do what he did. By my reading the drive from the station to the school is what took 3 minutes, which is NOT the response time.

    • This. It is asserted that it took them roughly 3 minutes to travel to the school, which is plausible.

      That’s not the overall response time, much less the time from “first shot fired” to “armed cop approaches school buildings”.

      • This will probably get hit by the filter, but response time to a location and an effective response are two different things, especially given a large location. The police may have arrived on the school grounds within 3 minutes, but they were not able to effectively engage the shooter within the classroom during that time frame.

        Also, police will be doing 110-140 mph on a response like this on a freeway, and 100 plus on rural roads, depending on prevailing traffic conditions, roadway configuration, and vehicle limitations. Police are very familiar with the roads that they travel on, and how fast they can take their vehicles on them.

        • “Police are very familiar with the roads that they travel on, and how fast they can take their vehicles on them.”


          I live 12 miles from the Sheriff’s office. To get to my house from there, a deputy would travel 2.5 miles through “town”, then 10 miles on “rural” roads. There’s no way he’s doing 100mph on those rural roads – at best, he’ll do 80 (and even then, he runs a substantial risk of T-boning someone pulling out of a blind driveway, taking out kids waiting for a school bus, going head-on with someone legally passing, juicing a deer, etc.).

        • A81, considering all of those factors, even including rapid travel to site once dispatched, I’m increasingly willing to believe that it may have been 20 minutes from Lanza appearing at the office window to the first officer entering the building where he had already shot himself.

          With a small number of initial responders, and particularly with confusion regarding whether the active shooter was outdoors or indoors, I can definitely find it reasonable that several minutes would elapse between the first patrol car screeching to a halt and an armed officer entering the school building.

          In any case, isn’t it generally believed that Lanza suicided before the first officer entered the building?

        • @ Accur81

          Danbury is about 40 minutes from where I live. NOBODY is doing 100 mph on the roads around there. The limits are 25 to 35 mph. Balls to the wall you could be going 50-60 mph.

          Driving time is just one element – how long did it take for the cops to get the call? I am pretty sure the 911 system in Fairfield County is a county or regional system, so there may be a lag as they contact the appropriate PD.

    • As a general rule, “response time” is the time between being someone calling 911 and officer arrival on scene.

      If it takes 20 minutes for someone to notify the police, that’s not the fault of the police.

  14. This a news article, not an after action report or analysis. You’re looking at the wrong place for a full timeline, Officer weapons, crime scene details, etc. A final report by the Police Department or state will likely detail all that information but don’t expect a newspaper to provide tactical analysis that most readers will glaze over.

    Certainly don’t expect that the reporter was given all that information.

  15. Sooo… where, exactly, did the 20 minutes number come from? I’ve used that in arguments several times and now I stand corrected.

    Still though, when someone’s bearing down on you with a gun or knife with intent to do you harm and you’re unarmed… 3 minutes might as well be 3 days.

    • These were 1st graders. 3 minutes is an eternity. Do we really expect them to bum rush the shooter while he reloads a 10 round mag? The gun grabbers are ignorant and/or mentally ill themselves. Or just evil.

    • I saw the ‘about 20 minutes’ number on the CNN report on the incident. If it’s wrong, someone needs to tell CNN- I had been assuming that an error that significant would be corrected pronto.

  16. Fire/Police responders check in with dispatch ON ARRIVAL at the scene. And when they ENTER the building. Those times ought to be public information. Why aren’t they available?

    The human memory is very UNRELIABLE in high stress situations. In particular the participants sense of time goes all to Hell. That’s why the dispatch tapes are the only source of objectively verifiable data.

    • He did. Before he didn’t, after he did, before he first didn’t…you get the drift.

      I’m amazed that we are arguing what boils down to semantics. Damn, if ya’ll were in a gas chamber and being poisoned, you wouldn’t be trying to find a way out but arguing about what gas it was and the velocity it was being pumped into the room…

  17. Regardless of when someone drove into the parking lot, it’s the time to engage the shooter that matters to the victims.

    It was still upwards of 15 minutes by any account, which is sufficiently long for weapon type or magazine size to stop mattering.

  18. Just by reading Wikipedia there are lots of details of timeline of what went on during the shooting. For example

    Lanza stopped shooting between 9:46 a.m. and 9:49 a.m., after firing 50 to 100 rounds.[49] He reloaded frequently during the shooting, sometimes firing only fifteen rounds from a thirty round magazine.[25

    49) “Newtown school shooting: Transcript of police, fire radio dispatch”. New Haven Register (New Haven, Connecticut). December 14, 2012. Retrieved December 17, 2012.

    25) Altimari, Dave; Lender, Jon (January 6, 2013). “Sandy Hook Shooter Adam Lanza Wore Earplugs”. Hartford Courant. Retrieved January 7, 2013.

    Newtown police dispatch first requested officers on the scene at 9:35 a.m.[49] Connecticut State Police received the first call at 9:41 a.m.,[41] and with Newtown police, quickly mobilized local police dog and police tactical units, a bomb squad, and a state police helicopter.[58]

    58)”28 Dead, Including 20 Children, After Sandy Hook School Shooting In Newtown”. Hartford Courant.

  19. Beyond the events at the school, I’m interested in what happened at the home. How were the guns secured on a daily basis at the Lanza home.

    As mentioned, number and type of magazines used would be good to know and learn from.

    • Neighbors stated that Lanza’s mother had a gun safe. However, to the uneducated, a security cabinet looks like a gun safe, except a cabinet can be popped with a pry bar in short order.

  20. This makes the argument for disarming even worse. Even if the cops can get to you in three minutes they still won’t engage the shooter. So I am expected to be fine with someone who has already broken into my home shooting at me while the cops are discussing what to do outside?

    • Well, when considering response time for a dangerous situation you have to think of the initial responders, their backup, and then SWAT showing up. SOMEONE will be there in 3 minutes, in 20 minutes someone that is willing to engage will be there.

      Quick story; my pastor’s home was broken into and he called the police as soon as he saw the suspect outside looking suspicious, some time before the actual break in, and updated as the suspect was in the backyard, and during the actual break in. It took the police 25 minutes to reach his home. Luckily the burglar wasn’t armed and even luckier he dropped his Iphone outside and could not find it, spending his time trying to locate it instead of entering the home until the police arrived and made the arrest. During that 25 minutes my pastor retreated his kids and wife into the safest room in the house and grabbed his shotgun. 25 minutes seems like pretty average response time until you consider you can see the police station from my pastor’s house, 500 yards away. Even close proximity to police doesn’t make you safe.

      • Even close proximity to police doesn’t make you safe.

        Sometimes it makes you unsafe. Just ask nine bystanders in New York City.

  21. The three minute claim, if true, is even more of an argument for having armed personnel in schools. How many 911 calls get response times faster than that? My guess is almost none unless a cop happens to be driving past at the time.

    As Lanza showed, three minutes (again, if true) is an eternity, during which a horrific amount of damage can be done. If the Sandy Hook response time had been a more typical five, ten or fifteen minutes, the death toll would have been even more mind boggling.

  22. I guess everyone gets PTSD nowadays. We’re all so fragile. It used to be that you might get shell shock or combat fatigue after months or maybe weeks of shelling and sustained combat. Nowadays the unions say you get it after just a few hours of seeing dead people after all threats have been eliminated. How pathetic.

  23. Beyond the political agenda which would be pursued independent of tbe facts, I think confirmed details are sparse because of the exposure of the school or town to litigation. At some point we will hear that a tip went un-investigated, a direct threat ignored, a door was open, a 911 call left unanswered, or other some other lapse occurred that would be very damaging to the current story. Someday, down the line after settlements are reached with the families this tidbit will be leaked on a Friday night and will never make the news cycle in prime time. No tin foil hat conspiracy, just the business of managing risk and monetary exposure.

    • Sorry, this was a reply to all of the “his AR was found in the trunk” and “the guy in the woods” comments.

      • Like Glenn Beck and The Blaze have any credibility, you might as well have posted a link to HuffPo. There WAS a guy in the woods, I saw the live video that day. It turns out he was just a guy hiking in the woods with his dog and had nothing to do with the murders. In the right place at the wrong time.

  24. My guess is that the cops were on scene in a matter of minutes. When a cop hears “shots fired at the elementary school”, he gets there quickly. The most telling part of the article was the officer who said he thought the shooting was coming from outside the school because it was so loud and close. This may have accounted for further delay by the cops in entering the school, while they searched outside.

  25. “…after a high-profile news event unfolds the public needs journalism that separates truth from fiction.”

    THIS. +100

    The news media in this country is all about sensational entertainment. News, not truth; rumor, not fact. If it’s new, it runs nonstop until it’s not new, at which point it’s dumped for the next 24/7 sensation.

    They’re giving the public what it wants, but nothing that it needs.

  26. I don’t understand why the whole thing has been sealed, like we are a bunch of fragile children that need to be protected from evil, we MUST see the evidence, I can handle it, I’m a big boy and if someone can’t, well they can not evaluate it then. No biggie but for us to learn from this event, must see the evidence.

        • Ralph, you and Tama are both right.

          Lawyers advocating for transparency and disclosure will absolutely perform a public service by keeping the authorities honest.

          Lawyers looking to represent plaintiffs in lawsuits are a strong disincentive for those same authorities to move quickly to disclosure of the facts. These potential litigants ensure that the government goes too far the other direction because they have a track record of exploiting any mistakes.

      • Wrong. Money then lawyers. Huge $ will be paid here. No criminal case to sort out. It is all about the $ that will be settled due to civil cases. Mark my words.

      • Wrong. Money then lawyers. Huge money will be paid here. No criminal case to sort out. It is all about the money that will be settled due to civil cases. Mark my words.

      • Wrong, first money, then lawyers who are chasing it. Huge money will be paid to these families No criminal case to sort out. It is all about the money that will be settled due to civil cases.

  27. The few times in my life I’ve had to dial 911, even in small towns, I’ve never gone from perception of a problem to going to the phone to dialling to getting connected with an operator to explaining the situation to them asking me for information and triaging their response in under ten minutes.

    What evidence do we have that it was any different for those who phoned the Newtown responders, who then dispatched LE who claim to have been present within three minutes. (And then what?) Do we have logs of the event? Are those public record? Have they been locked down by lawyers? Those are the questions the NYT reporters should be asking.

    In my estimation the NYT is trying to trump up a sense of victimization and urgency to justify its propagandizing against RKBA/2A. “See? Assault Cannons are SO DEADLY that nobody can respond in time to save lives!”

    • Ummm well something tells me your average call for service is much less important then shooting at an elementary schools. 3 minutes is a believable response time.

  28. I don’t trust the NY Times, I believe gun control has taken a back seat to the economy and immigration, which is probably the reason for this article a month and a half later.

    If these officers are diagnosed with PTSD would that also mean they are unfit to own/carry a firearm? Or would something like that only apply to us peons?

  29. PTSD…..
    Yes, it’s real.
    And, yes, Sandy Hook was a horrific tragedy and the scene no doubt gruesome.
    But honestly…..
    Have we become so soft of a nation that cops and other first responders are not expected to steel themselves against such things?
    We want them to be human, but for sh!t’s sake, you don’t become a zoo worker if you can’t handle animal crap…..

    • You walk into a room full of freshly dead 6-year-olds and their teacher, believing in your heart that it was your job to protect them, and try not to have nightmares for the next 5 years.

      This isn’t about being tough. This is about being human, and recognizing that virtually nobody is psychologically equipped to deal with the bloody aftermath of a terrorist incident, especially those involving children.

    • The problem is that there’s no training for dealing with this. There should be for first responders, but there isn’t.

      Still, I know a lot of firefighters who have had to view and work amidst horrifying scenes of dead bodies and charred remains. Not too much PTSD there, though. So, I wonder why cops get PTSD and firefighters seem to get it less frequently, or not at all.

      • There is a different ethos among the FF/EMT type folks.

        They see enough stuff that is really, umm, messy, to learn rather quickly to compartmentalize or they get out of the job in a hurry. The humor is beyond macabre – there is a term for everything from charred corpse (crispy critter), to crash victims (FIRT failed impact resistance test), to going through the windshield (pre-extricated for your convienence). There’s a hundred more…

        They’re not monsters, it’s just a coping mechanism, and the rest of the house is there to generally help you along.

        • Yep. You either laugh, or walk to the other side of the roof (in my case) and blow your head off. So…you laugh.

          Outsiders looking in can not, and never will, understand it.

    • Different people are different. As a veteran, I’ve known many people who’ve had to deal with PTSD. The only thing they shared in common was exposure to, or involvement in traumatic events. Putting on a uniform doesn’t desensitize a person to violence, nor does it signal that the individual will not have a negative psychological reaction to it after the fact.

      Training can help a person function effectively during a traumatic event, but no amount of training or preparation can prevent someone from being mentally effected by the event once it is over. Repeated exposure can lead to desensitization and detachment… this was often referred to as the “thousand yard stare” in WWII, and is a byproduct of PTSD.

      The cops mentioned above are unlikely to have ever been exposed to the level of destructive violence exhibited that day. The problem is magnified by the age of the victims, as violence against children is particularly abhorrent in our society. as such, the claims of PTSD among the responding officers is understandable.

      Finally, the “man-up an deal with it” attitude is inappropriate, and is a contributing factor to the rising rate of suicides amongst veterans. It may work for a few, but again, different people are different. There is no one-size fits all, or even most, solution for problems stemming from the human psyche.

    • I saw someone die at work recently. I wouldn’t necessarily say that I have PTSD, but it was definitely a terrible experience. That person was an adult, the memory of his death and others are still with me, and not in a peaceful way. I’ve never seen a child die, or recently dead in front of me, and I pray that I never do. This is not an “animal crap” experience. It is a glimpse of the darkest form of form of the human condition.

      Here also is a dark thought: the possibility exists that lives could have been saved if the officers had immediately entered the school instead of searching outside. We’re tactical errors made? Did searching in the wrong location cost lives? We are looking for these answers, but such things are not easily found when lives are at stake. Honestly I wish that they were, because we deserve to know the truth. As Ralph and Alpha have said, it will take lawyers to expose the truth.

  30. WHEN WILL THE FACTS COME OUT? Next month? Next year? 5 years from now? EVER?? What happened at the Lanza home? What weapons were at the crime scene? What was the police response timeline? I want to know exactly how many shots were fired, where they were fired within in the building, the magazine/reload facts, what Lanza was wearing, EVERYTHING.

    • Yes, because what Adam was wearing will blow this case wide open for keyboard detectives the world around, and only then will we crack this mystery.


  31. Maybe this is not exactly on topic but hopefully close enough. I was thinking today about the Amish school shooting, we knew exactly what happened and who the players where very quickly as I recall. At the minimum there were many more details available soon after it started.

    The other thing that occurred to me is that I don’t remember much gun grabbing talk after that incident. Why not?

  32. First reports were they took 20 minutes to get there. Now, they are saying only 3 minutes. This would remove some liability. What is the truth and why has it taken so long to get it?

    • Welcome to the 21st century. We have a seriously unreliable media engine that puts speed and sensationalism far before fact. It sucks, but you might as well get used to it.

  33. So now we are suppose to believe the new version police give this long after the incident. I hope nobody honestly believes we have the correct info now, or that the previous info was correct either. To actually say and pass on the “we were there in 2 minutes” claim as fact is just as bad as any speculation or assumptions made by media.
    Hate the new spam captcha btw. Kinda reminds me of the laws the gungrabbers are trying to push through. Much like if someone really wishes to get a gun to murder, if someone wants to leave spam they will take the time to fill out the captcha just as all of us regular folks who comment on here now have to do. Thanks

Comments are closed.