It’s the stuff of nightmares; a masked gunman killed 12 people and injured 50 at a midnight showing of Warner Bros. Pictures‘ The Dark Knight Rises in a suburb of Denver, Colorado, early on Friday. The young man (now in custody) allegedly hurled a gas canister into the auditorium before opening fire on moviegoers.
The incident has led to the Paris premiere of the film being cancelled, and statements from Warner Bros. and President Obama have followed.
Here’s what Reuters had to say about what happened:
“About fifty others including children were wounded in the attack on the showing of The Dark Knight Rises in a mall in the Aurora suburb, some of whom were treated for the effects of tear gas, hospital officials said.
“This is a horrific event,” Aurora Police Chief Dan Oates told a news conference, adding that a suspect was taken into custody in the parking lot behind the theater. He had initially put the death toll at 14, but a spokesman later told NBC the toll had been revised to 12.
Police said the Aurora gunman had appeared at the front of the theater during the movie and released a canister which let out a hissing sound before gunfire erupted.
Dozens of police were at the scene, and the authorities evacuated the area while they checked for any explosive devices. They said there was no evidence of a second gunman.”
This is from ABC News’s report of the incident:
The young man who is in custody after allegedly gunning down 12 people in a mass shooting spree overnight in Aurora, Colorado has been identified as local resident James Holmes, according to federal authorities.
Law enforcement officials and witnesses told ABC News Holmes, 24, wore what appeared to be a bullet-proof vest and riot-type mask as he opened fire in a movie theater with three weapons at a midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises. In addition to the 12 deaths, at least 50 people were injured, according to police.
Here’s the statement from Warner Bros. Pictures:
“Warner Bros. is deeply saddened to learn about this shocking incident. We extend our sincere sympathies to the families and loved ones of the victims at this tragic time.”
President Obama also released the following statement:
“Michelle and I are shocked and saddened by the horrific and tragic shooting in Colorado. Federal and local law enforcement are still responding, and my Administration will do everything that we can to support the people of Aurora in this extraordinarily difficult time. We are committed to bringing whoever was responsible to justice, ensuring the safety of our people, and caring for those who have been wounded. As we do when confronted by moments of darkness and challenge, we must now come together as one American family. All of us must have the people of Aurora in our thoughts and prayers as they confront the loss of family, friends, and neighbors, and we must stand together with them in the challenging hours and days to come.”
It’s a tragedy, but one that could have happened at any film, or at any time. At least, so far, there doesn’t seem to be any reason for why Holmes chose the film to do what he did.
Our thoughts are with the victims.