Connecticut shooter wanted to top Norway death toll: CBS

Tue Feb 19, 2013 11:17am EST

People react as they sit and watch families of Sandy Hook shooting victims testify at a public hearing on gun control at Newtown High School in Newtown, Connecticut January 30, 2013. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

People react as they sit and watch families of Sandy Hook shooting victims testify at a public hearing on gun control at Newtown High School in Newtown, Connecticut January 30, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Carlo Allegri

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(Reuters) - The man who shot dead 20 children and six adults at a Connecticut elementary school wanted to kill more people than the 77 slain by a Norwegian man in a 2011 rampage, CBS News reported on Monday, citing unnamed law enforcement sources.

A Connecticut state police spokesman dismissed the report as inaccurate speculation.

Adam Lanza, 20, who killed himself as police closed in on him at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, on December 14, saw himself in direct competition with Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people in a bombing and shooting attack in Norway on July 22, 2011, CBS said. Breivik surrendered to police.

Citing two officials briefed on the Newtown investigation, CBS said Lanza targeted the elementary school because he saw it as the "easiest target" with the "largest cluster of people."

The report did not say how the investigators learned of Lanza's desire to compete with Breivik.

Lanza was also motivated by violent videogames and had spent numerous hours playing games and working on his computer shooting skills in a private gaming room in his basement with blacked out windows, CBS said. Investigators recovered a large number of games from the basement, the report said.

Evidence shows that in his mind, Lanza was likely acting out the fantasies of a videogame during his shooting spree with each death amounting to some kind of "score," CBS said.

Lanza killed 20 schoolchildren aged 6 and 7 plus six adults who worked at the school, shocking the United States and leading President Barack Obama to propose new gun-control legislation.

Authorities have not publicly spoken of his motive.

"This is not official Connecticut State Police information and is someone's speculation regarding the case," Connecticut State Police Lieutenant Paul Vance told Reuters in an email statement.

When asked if the CBS report was in any way accurate, Vance responded, "No."

Breivik, a self-styled warrior against Muslim immigration, killed eight people by bombing the Oslo government headquarters and then shot dead 69 people at the ruling party's summer youth camp.

A Norwegian judge last year sentenced Breivik to the maximum 21 years in prison, though his release can be put off indefinitely should he be deemed a threat to society.

(Reporting by Daniel Trotta in New York; Editing by Mohammad Zargham and Eric Beech)

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Comments (4)
ballsy wrote:
Mental issues are what the problem is, not guns. He chose an area that had a maximum number of people that were not armed. Nor did they have armed guards. Taking guns away from law abiding citizens will not stop this from happening. If anything it will embolden them to kill more. All the talk about gun control, how do they plan on confisgating guns from criminals??

Feb 19, 2013 9:30am EST  --  Report as abuse
BlueOkie wrote:
So I say guns are not the problem, the news media is! If they hadn’t reported this 77 killings, then maybe Newtown wouldn’t have happened.

Feb 19, 2013 10:37am EST  --  Report as abuse
MetalHead8 wrote:
@BlueOkie, Your right. The less we Idolize Heros and Glamorize Villians this is gunna keep up.

Besides, the Media’s inaccruate and biased potrayal of guns is pathetic.

Facts over Emotions

Feb 19, 2013 11:23am EST  --  Report as abuse
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