Connecticut Town Mourns After School Shooting - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Connecticut Town Mourns After School Shooting

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NEWTOWN, CT (NBC)-- The 20 children and six adults killed in the Connecticut school massacre were all shot multiple times, many with a rifle, Connecticut's chief medical examiner said Saturday.

The children, 12 girls and eight boys, were all 6 or 7 years old, Dr. H. Wayne Carver said at an afternoon news briefing. "This is a very devastating set of injuries," Carver said. "I believe everyone was hit more than once."

He said all the victims at Sandy Hook Elementary died of gunshot wounds and all the deaths have been classified as homicides. Carver said he personally performed seven autopsies and those children had between three and 11 wounds each. Two were shot at close range, the others at a distance. Asked whether they suffered, he grimly replied, "Not for very long."

He said he will perform an autopsy Sunday on the suspected gunman, Adam Lanza, 20, who is believed to have killed himself. He will also do an autopsy on Lanza's mother, Nancy Lanza, 52, who was found dead in her Newtown home.

President Barack Obama will travel to Newtown on Sunday to meet with the victims' families and thank first responders, the White House announced Saturday night. The president will also speak at an interfaith vigil for families of the victims as well as families from Sandy Hook Elementary School.

The motive for the mass killing, the second-deadliest school shooting in U.S. history, was unknown. "We've been doing everything we need to do to peel back the onion, layer by layer, and get more information," Connecticut State Police Lt. Paul Vance said earlier.

"Our investigators at the crime scene ... did produce some very good evidence in this investigation that our investigators will be able to use in, hopefully, painting the complete picture as to how - and more importantly why - this occurred."

Four doctors and 10 technicians, plus a college student working her first day with the medical examiner's office, toiled into Friday night to identify the victims.

They took photos of their faces and then showed the pictures to families of the 12 girls and eight boys, all first graders. "It's easier on the families when you do this," Carver said.

He said that he managed to maintain professional composure during the work, but it was a challenge. "I've been at this for a third of a century and my sensibility may not be the average man's, but this is probably the worst I've seen," Carver said.

At the end of the briefing, authorities handed out a list of the victims, who included the school principal and school psychologist.

Newtown's first selectman, Patricia Llodra, pleaded for privacy for the grieving families, each assigned their own trooper. "We are a strong and caring place. We will find a way to heal so that all of our residents young and old find peace," Llodra said. Please know that we have suffered a terrible loss and we need your respect on this terrible journey."

Although the bodies were removed from the suburban hilltop school, authorities said it would take at least two more days for investigators to finish combing over the crime scene.

Police have determined that the gunman was not buzzed into Sandy Hook, where he was once a student. "He forced his way into the school," Vance said. He did not provide specifics and said that broken windows at the school may have been shattered by police who responded to the emergency.

Below is the list of the victims' names released by the chief medical examiner's office.

Children:

Charlotte Bacon, 6

Daniel Barden, 7

Olivia Engel, 6

Josephine Gay, 7

Ana M. Marquez-Greene, 6

Dylan Hockley, 6

Madeleine F. Hsu, 6

Catherine V. Hubbard, 6

Chase Kowalski, 7

Jesse Lewis, 6

James Mattioli, 6

Grace McDonnell, 7

Emilie Parker, 6

Jack Pinto, 6

Noah Pozner, 6

Caroline Previdi, 6

Jessica Rekos, 6

Aviele Richman, 6

Benjamin Wheeler, 6

Allison N. Wyatt, 6

Adults:

Dawn Hochsprung, 47

Rachel Davino, 29

Anne Marie Murphy, 52

Lauren Rousseau, 30

Mary Sherlach, 56

Victoria Soto, 27