Breaking News: Gunman Kills 12 At Colorado Dark Knight Rises Premiere [UPDATED]: A lone masked gunman who has been identified as 24-year-old James Holmes, armed with a rifle, a shotgun, and two handguns, entered a movie theater outside Denver, CO, this morning just minutes after the 12:05 a.m. premiere of The Dark Knight Rises began, killing at least 12 people and wounding at least 38.
A witness said Holmes entered the Aurora theater through the emergency exit door, “threw a canister across the theater,” unleashing gas, “then started shooting.” Another witness said movie-goers were confused when the shooting started because they thought the sound of gunfire was coming from the movie.
“We were maybe 20 or 30 minutes into the movie and all you hear, first you smell smoke, everybody thought it was fireworks or something like that, and then you just see people dropping and the gunshots are constant,” said witness Christ Jones, speaking to Denver ABC affiliate KMGH. “I heard at least 20 to 30 rounds within that minute or two.”
Another witness said, “He looked so calm when he did it.”
Holmes, was arrested outside the theater.
A search of Holmes’ apartment is under way; officials say it is “booby-trapped” with “very sophisticated” explosives and they could be there “for hours or days.” Five nearby buildings have been evacuated.
Holmes had no history with police other than a speeding ticket. He went to high school in San Diego, where his family still lives; he was studying for a Ph.D. in neuroscience at the University of Colorado Denver but withdrew last month.
Here’s what we know:
- Warner Bros. has canceled the Paris premiere of The Dark Knight Rises: The company “is deeply saddened to learn about this shocking incident.”
- Holmes’ mother told ABC News: ”You have the right person. I need to call the police… I need to fly out to Colorado.”
- President Obama has called for a national day of reflection: ”Such violence, such evil is senseless. It is beyond reason… There are going to be other days for politics. This is a day for prayer and reflection.”
- Obama and Romney have pulled their negative ads from Colorado airwaves.
- The Denver Post has video from the aftermath of the shooting.
- Fox News has released 911 calls from inside the movie theater during the shooting.
- Among those killed was Jessica Redfield, an aspiring sportscaster who had blogged recently about her narrow escape from a shooting at a shopping mall in Toronto.
- A man who claims to have been injured in the shooting has posted pics of his injuries online.
- ABC is apologizing after correspondent Brian Ross incorrectly linked the shooter to the Tea Party.
[lat / gawker / dailyintel]
This entire thing is SO HORRIBLE. And like I know everyone is making it about them and HOW DOES THIS RELATE TO ME, but it’s true. It could’ve been any of us. We all go buck at midnight premieres all the time, right? I absolutely live for midnight premieres because they’re full of such camaraderie and love and you really feel like you’re experiencing something. I’ve never once in my life thought of that environment as being unsafe. I literally feel like this guy did this in a church, like that’s how sacred a movie theatre during a midnight premiere is. It’s devastating.