Adam Lanza’s Hard Drive Yields No Answers

By: Amanda Crum - December 18, 2012

Adam Lanza, the 20-year old who tore through Sandy Hook Elementary School on a violent, murderous rampage last Friday in Newtown, Connecticut, destroyed his computer’s hard drive before the shootings, and police have been valiantly trying to recover anything from the damaged files that might give them a clue as to why he committed such a heinous act. However, it looks like we may never find out what he was doing or who he was communicating with that morning, and hope of discovering even the tiniest bit of motive is rapidly disappearing.

It appears Lanza destroyed the hard drive with a hammer or screwdriver, and the lengths he went to in order to protect his computer history have led investigators to believe there must be something worth trying to recover.

Lanza shot his mother, Nancy, to death as she lay in bed before leaving for the elementary school. With his father and brother both living out of state and even the closest friends of the family saying they rarely saw Adam, it will be difficult for law enforcement officials to glean much about his recent behavior. It’s now being reported that he suffered from a learning disability–Asperger’s Syndrome–and was isolated much of the time in the home he shared with his mother. Friends and family say he was a highly intelligent boy who spent hours on the computer and loved video games, something which is stirring the debate about violent imagery in games and the effect it has on young people.

For now, police say they won’t give up trying to extract data from the hard drive, but it’s looking like they won’t be able to come up with much. As for the survivors of the shooting, today marks the first day their peers return to school, but it hasn’t been decided yet when the Sandy Hook children will return. Their own school is still a crime scene.

Amanda Crum

About the Author

Amanda CrumAmanda Crum is a writer and artist from Kentucky. She's a fan of Edward Gorey, Hunter S. Thompson, and horror movies. You can follow her on Google:+Amanda Crum

View all posts by Amanda Crum
  • http://WebProNews Tamara

    I guess I am a bit confused as to why the father doesn’t have a lot to say about his son or ex wife? did he ever see his son? also as to why his brother hadn’t seen his brother since 2010? Maybe he felt forgotten for some reason living such a sheltered life and I have two friends with kids with Aspergers and I have seen both of them go into uncontrollable rages and at that point they do not even know what they are doing and no feeling in the moment of those rages, the difference between right or wrong until after and seem to be very apologetic…

    • randy

      I agree w/ you – Protecting the family honor is out the window right now. It looks like they’re being instructed by a lawyer to not say anything.

  • Rob

    Im sure they already thought of this, but they could subpoena Facebook, Google, yahoo, and bing (if he had accounts with them)and put together a pretty accurate search history.

  • strigoi

    “a highly intelligent boy who spent hours on the computer and loved video games, something which is stirring the debate about violent imagery in games and the effect it has on young people-” ON ASPERGERS! Don’t penalize the rest of us because ONE emotionally and mentally person couldn’t handle it. Some of us have the mental self discipline to distinguish reality from fantasy, fact from fiction, fake violence from true violence.

  • dude

    if my grandad can recover data from the wtc rubble for ibm.. im sure they can recover data from a hammered hd..personaly though im growing tired of the debate on guns on this one.. guy was oviously and CLENICLY proven to be mentaly handycapped.. this isnt a debate on how he got guns. (he STOLE them from his mother after he murdered her) *maybe over no crust on a pb&j* so the idea that he aquired these guns himself is out the window. the real deal is MENTAL HEALTH IN AMERICA. if you cant see that, then maybe you yourself should be examened by a mental health professional.

    • Kenneth

      obviously not oviously
      clinically not clenicly
      handicapped not handycapped
      had guns not got guns
      examined not examened

      Work on some of these so people will take you seriously.
      I agree with you but I wouldn’t be telling other people that they should be examined.

      • Jay

        Kenneth be nice, Dude you are right when you say its the Mental health in America, but its more of a overall lack of Health care at all in America. Its time for a change. Every person should have free basic health care. Its sad that we kick to the streets mental patients who need treatment. Even with treatment there is no way you can stop all evil. The Mother from what I have read was a very giving person who tried to help other people all the time. What I need to do is stop trying to lay blame and get involved.

    • sherry

      I’m mentally disabled and im capable of making pretty good decisions myself.Thats the problem when something horrorable goes wrong everyone wants to blame it on mental health that’s not always the case.You could be very healthy and still SNAP. He clearly knew what he was doing!!!!!

    • CT Grandma

      Hey Dude!
      Why would a mother in her right mind keep guns and, specifically, assault weapons, around when she has a child with major mental issues? Would you not take extraordinary measures to keep any sort of dangerous objects away from a troubled child? Gun control is the first
      issue here and the second issue is the proper care of those among us with personality/mental disorders.

  • deb

    I am also surprised about his father and brother keeping silent….they have not interviewed them or even mentioned them at all and i think tht could stem alot of the issues Adam had also…i do not feel sorry for him at all cause what he did was terrible i have children and i am feeling so sorry for all the parents and sisters and brothers for all the angles lost on 12-14-12 it should have not ever happened…in Milwaukee schools are locked just as Sandy Hook was and it proves tht no one is safe at all not even heart goes out to all who lost the children and friends and all the teachers and principle they all lost may god be with u all. :'(

  • sissy

    In the first place, children/young adults/or older, with mental issues, has no business being taught to shoot guns, or be around weapons period. Or should they be able to view/purchase games/movies etc pertaining to violence. I’d also like to know how he got his brothers ID when his brother stated he hadnt seen his since 2010. If it was a fake ID I’m sure that would of been told. The brother said he hadnt seen adam but never stated he hadnt talked to him or corresponded with him in any other way. Very curious also as to why the dad hasnt comitted either.

    • http://yahoo dee

      I totally agree and interested to know more about what the brother and father knows. There should have been WAY more talk regarding the brother and father since those are the closest relatives to that crazy a___boy!

  • killa rabbit

    it seems that a certain race of people are just as demonic as history says they are, were and will always be. yeah…guess who. i wonder is the devil the same race??

    • http://yahoo Spencer

      What does race have to do with it idiot!

      • Keith Longey

        What is the difference between this rural-surburban violent video game mentally ill white youth from a wealthy broken family and the black and hispanic inner city youths involved in the drug and “gangsta” culture shooting up each other and innoncent bystanders daily on city streets? Seems there is the same lack of moral compass, same lack of behavioral model of an upstanding male figure in their lives. And surely the same lack of societal relationship and contribution goals!

      • Jay

        The only “Race” that are just as demonic as history says they are. is the human race. Since you do know that history covers more than just current times and place look into the past heck even current history of Africa. Try here

  • http://yahoo Spencer

    To killa rabbit, what does race have to do with it you moronic idiot!

  • Makr

    Back in the day, kids like Adam were locked away in “homes” and institutions away from society. Time to re-think the policy of integrating these types in to society.

    • Mary

      Totally agree. This scumbag was no ‘victim’. He knew exactly what he was doing and made a conscious CHOICE. Sociopath!

    • Amy Smith

      Real words of wisdom there. Lock ’em away. Well, with proper medication and therapy, people with mental illnesses can function very well in society. I don’t think anyone really knows the full extent of what really was going on. Yet, we all tend to speculate on the matter. Personally, the idiots of world should be locked up, but that’s a matter of perception.

  • randy

    For me it’s really clear he was completely inept – I think about this: He smashed his hard drive for what? If he thought he was going to die, why care about your pc? Why care about your traces? It wouldn’t suprise me to find out that there was really nothing of substance on it. An FBI expert said he used the gun w/ the largest caliber on himself to ensure he was not alive. In his deranged mind, he knew this was it. I believe if he was “evil” he would have left some “words” of wisdom for people to know – it doesn’t look like he did, so maybe he was flat out crazy & tried to work his plan to the best of his mental capacity. I have a fear if we ever do find out what set him off it will be something very trvial to the general population. I pray for all the victims

  • Paul Harmon


  • Miss M

    Killarabbit- Means that the race who most likely commits these crimes are white! Sorry, thus far statistics do seem to support his comment.

    However, we need to start to stop the violence with all violent games, and movies for kids under the age of 18. This law should be something similar to the drinking alcohol law for kids under age. People should be prosecuted/fined for allowing it! Parents kids who use guns in their house,(purchased by their parents), should have some type of punishment as well. Those guns must be locked and secured at all times, otherwise the owners should be held responsible!

    ***We could pay for it through our real estate taxes, and in the future in our state taxes. Or give the companies who manufacture such security products a big tax write off to offset the cost of purchasing their security machines!

    Now, is the time to start installing security devices/procedures that greater protect our kids from violent unbalanced predators. The devices could be the same types of procedures,(on a much smaller scale), that are currently in place at our airports. Children are our greatest treasure and it is time we protect them as such!

  • http://webpronews Eva

    My son has Asperger’s and I resent Makr stating maybe they should be put away! You cannot blame Asperger’s just like you can’t blame guns. Do we know he even had Asperger’s? Was he on medication? My son takes medication and we see a psychologist and a psychiatrist often to keep tabs on his mental status. His mother should have been doing this if he really had any kind of issues.

    • Elliott

      Don’t get upset: But I am assuming that Nancy Lanza was “checked out” on the motherhood front.

    • Miss M

      True enough! too bad she paid for her mistake with her life!

  • Elliott

    Talk about violence in video games all you want, but I’ve never seen one where you massacre twenty 6 and 7 year olds.

    humans are born with this kind of evil, plain and simple… it’s whether or not this evil harvests in that person. Many things can factor into it.

    It looks like their was a ultra-paranoid about the end-of-the-world divorced mother, who seemed to be pretty open about something being wrong with her son (and it was a “thing” around their small town,) and for some reason she thought it was a good idea to have automatic weapons where he could use them. The mental illness of the child was proof he would always be detached from most human emotions and feelings. Therefore, killing his mother and those children had no effect on him. He was probably surprised when he was gunned down.

    very basic formula for something like this to happen

  • angel

    this sadistic idiot did the us government and fbi a favor by shooting himself..may all the children and adults that were killed that day REST IN PEACE…AND TO THE SADISTIC IDIOTS FAMILY…MAY HE ROT IN HELL FOR HIS ACTIONS..

  • kevin

    Guns, we have always been a nation of guns, nothing has changed there. What has drasticly changed recently is how children are raised in this country. Gone are the days of discipline and structure that helped form decent God fearing citizens. Notice how all this crap started when you took God out of the schools? Now people are raising self centered entitled brats with no thought of anyone or anything but themself. No discipline equals no respect no empathy for others. Blaming it on anything else is blindness. Listening to some people talk of resons for these things makes me think of cartoons they are so far from reality. Looking at this generation of kids, forty years old and younger I am not suprised at these shooting or any of the other horrors we see, it`s the natural outcome of such a corrupt society. Want to change it? Spank your children make them do chores, make them help others, do this when they are small, enforce that good behavor as they are growing up so the end result will mostly be decent human beings not animals. There will always be crazys, just not so many. Also stop letting them out, no one is afraid of the justice system as it`s a joke with revolving doors.

    • JJames

      Not everyone is raising entitled self centered brats. I hate that generalization but I do agree God should be put back in schools. It was never taken out of ours and we are public. Discipline is a good thing to a point, some parents take it to the extreme. Everyone talks of gun control. What’s that going to do? If someone wants to get a hold of guns they will find a way. How did this sick evil twisted person do it? I don’t think his mental health should even be considered in this matter. He knew exactly what he was doing. Now I hope he rots in the deepest pits of hell.

      • K

        GOD in schools has nothing to do with anything. I don’t even kill bugs, and I do not believe in god. Religion has been the instigator for all of the world’s wars and mass death. Bringing it back into schools will solve NOTHING.

        • corey

          let me ask this. as far as taking God out of schools…..How’s it working for ya so far???? We need Him back in schools and back in this Nation! you say you don’t believe, well trust me, the day will come when you do, i just pray it’s not too late! Every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess!!!

        • Mgarza

          What God do you follow? The reason for all this corruption is becuase Jesus Christ has been taken out of everthing in this world. It is not about religion it is about a reletahionship with Jesus Christ. If you do not know the Lord you act on fleshly thoughts and crazy ones that Satan places on people who are in bondage of sin. People perish for lack of knowlege.

  • yourdarntootin

    Maybe, the mother set him off by destroying his computer. He seemed to spend alot of time on it. People with autism are sometimes able to communicate more effectively indirectly such as through email, “chatting”, etc., easier than direct contact. Maybe she thought she’d force him into reality and he went into a rage. Who knows, my heart breaks for all those babies!!

    • michael

      exactly what i was thinking.

      i know this will sound silly, but drink a lot of water, people. with all the chemical and hormones in our foods, especially out meat, we accumulate so much in our system that the only way to flush it out is with water. and since many kids nowadays spend so much time indoors and not exercising, these chemicals are not properly pushed out of the body by sweat. to make matters worse, if they spend so much time at a time at a computer, tablet, phones, most likely they don’t drink enough water and these chemicals stay in the body more and accumulate.

      drink lots of water so pee a lot. flush out your body. force your kids to drink drink 6-8 glasses or more of water a day. that will force them to pee a lot, allowing the kidneys to do its job. peeing is the natural way the body reacts to cleanse the body.

      • paul

        Michael you are an asshole

  • karen

    it’s got a lot to do w/the way these children are being raised – my dad was hunter who was in law enforcement – we ALWAYS had guns around the house – he cleaned his guns at the kitchen table – my brothers and I never once thought of picking one up to use, show or play with…

  • Mac

    This woman regularly (and cryptically) complained about her son and how increasingly difficult it was to deal with him. Meanwhile, she set up an arsenal of guns, including those made for mass killing, in her house and took this same “problematic son” target practicing! This does not make sense, to say the least.

    He did not smash the hard drive for items connected to this shooting, it is now all public knowledge. He must have tried to hide other things. There is much that we do not know where this household was concerned, and we may never know!



    • JASON


    • Lisa

      From what I gather, almost 9000 people were killed by guns in the United States of America last year. Even with a higher population, this number is extreme.

      • Tony

        An average of 40,000 people died each year from car accidents. Should we ban cars and trucks too?

        • Lisa

          I didn’t say we should ban guns. Maybe a little control would save lives.

  • even steven

    @killa rabbit.its true that statistics show that these type of crimes r done by white ppl.if u go by the #’s blk ppl generally murder over money,drugs,etc,all stemming from poverty n not much as I disagree with how killa rabbit stated it his statement does hold sum validity.instead of profiling the trayvon martins how about profiling sum of these white kids ages 16-mid 20s.if that was a blk kid in Conn riding around with an assault rifle & 2pistols I GUARANTEE he wouldnt have evn made it to Sandy Hook bcuz he wouldve been pulld over without a doubt!but bcuz this kid was white he drove pass 4-5 cops on the way to commit this devilish act n the cops didn’t evn look his way bcuz he was a young white American which that statement n itself made him NOT SUSPICIOUS….young blk men will b profiles till the end of time but now there’s a new threat that every officer,school teacher,& movie theater popcorn girl needs to b suspicious of n its YOUNG WHITE MALES AGES 16-30.BE AWARE!PAT THEM DOWN!MAKE SUM ARREST BEFORE ANOTHER RICH,DEPRESSED,GODLESS,DUMMY KILLS ANOTHER HUMAN BEING

  • Donald Green

    I think they should take the rest of this scumbags family and put them in front of a firing squad so that they cannot contaminate the rest of the world with sick ass people…….

    • K

      Why do you think the brother and father (who divorced the mom awhile ago) should be held responsible for the relative’s actions? You sir, are an idiot. Hope no one in your family ever does anything wrong, or YOU will be blamed for it. Douchbag.

    • corey

      donald green, u can’t be serious! so if someone in YOUR family does something wrong, then we should hold u responsible for it as well????? you really need to think before you type!! what he did is horrific but you can not hold his whole family responsilbe for it! that’s just wrong!

  • Haylee

    its not an issue of white or black, its an issue of mental illness. i work with mentally ill of all colors trust me, it matters NOT the race….they are very sick people and the color of the skin makes no difference in the depth of the disease that twists inside the mind of a murderer!!!! keep the race card out of this please!!!

  • http://WPN DL

    Enough negative comments and judgments people!! ENOUGH! The 20 children and 6 adults are DEAD so IS the killer. Your opinions mean nothing but to serve to frustrate people further. Let’s focus on more constructive things, like maybe our OWN children, families and relationships and work to prevent things like this from happening within our own families. Gun control will do nothing to prevent the mental instability that these people go through to get to this point. Guns don’t kill, people do. There are MANY other Countries where people are allowed to own and carry guns around; and it is considered normal even kids! and we don’t hear of them killing innocent children for no apparent reason. Let’s just focus on the “hero’s” in this situation and the surviving children and see if we can’t show them the more positive sides of tragedy by focusing on them ourselves. Christmas is coming…let’s give them a break and let them heal.
    May peace be with us all…

  • frances brown

    Let us remember that Adam is a child of God even though he is responsible for so many deaths. Parents, learn from this horrible crime and be very careful how you behave around children who have mental problems. Also, quit relying so much on doctors to cure your problem children, start praying for God to heal your children; He is the Almighty Healer and make sure your children attend church on a regular basis. If the country would start taking or sending their children to church just like they send them to school, our children will be good, productive citizens.

    • gloria slater

      Hmm where was this God of yours when the innocent babies were being shot and needed protection?

  • Heidi Russell


    You people are doing IRREPARABLE HARM by reporting this story incorrectly.


    • Lisa

      I read it as he had Asperger’s and a learning disability but I see what you mean. It’s worded incorrectly. Asperger’s is not a learning disability.

  • http://yahoo Alvaro

    This country is very immature when it comes down to owning guns, driving while drinking alcohol etc. the court system is broken and what they should do is have much harsher punishments on criminals. behead them or cut off other limbs if they commit a crime. thats what this country needs and see how many idiots out there would dare to commit a crime. this country’s citizens cannot be trusted with any weapons licensed or not. They are not responsible and smart enough to carry guns anywhere!

    • gloria slater

      Really??? Did you not read he killed himself? You going to be head him after he is dead? And before you say it would stop others, look back, Columbine and on and on, they killed themselfs or let the police kill them or planned on going up with bombs. These people do not go out and kill and plan to be taken into custody to face the court system.

  • Jackie

    I wish people would quit blaming everything else but the actual person. It wasn’t guns, it wasn’t video games. So what, if you control the amount of silverware people have in their household the less Obesity we will have in this world………..get real people!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Quit looking to put the blame on the only thing “Society” can control…….since they cannot control the minds and thoughts of human beings!!!!!!!!! It’s all about Taking Control of “Something”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Ron

    Mission Hills, California: a guy in his 20’s has now stabbed his Grandmother to death with a BBQ fork. My gut guess is that violent Computer/video games has created a generation of mentally ill people.

  • Olivia

    Yea lets blame it on video games.. right .. How about we blame it on society and how people raise their own children instead, c’mon take some responsibility..

  • Charly smarjesse

    We are in the same trouble our forefathers found themselves in , will we have their courage of conviction. The corporations that profit from the perverted goods that influence and corrupt fragile eggshell minds now want to have their cake and eat it too . State sponsored actors and entertainers have replaced real journalIsts for so long there is a generation of people who believe that fact is fiction-and tv reality. The real tragedy is what weak kneed pussies we apparently have become. the fear driven sensationalized media and it’s opportunistic carpetbagger shareholders may now have us in THEIR crosshairs where , without a shot being fired , will claim their victory.While emotions dictate behavior the media blitz is on.if Adam Lanza used a ford pick up and ran over 26 kids at the bus stop we wouldn’t be tallking about gun control as much as self control. Travel well and peace be with us, charly

  • Charly smarjesse

    One more comment.”prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable , than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. “The Constitution …… And here we stand , kneel or fall …. It’s up to we the people as it should be , let’s not let the media be our conscience on this one … no matter which side of the debate you may be on, we owe the families of servicemen and women who have died for our rights as much as the children who gave theirs when those rights where grossly perverted by a true MAD MAN .I love my country and I believe in it’s people .

  • Charly smarjesse

    Tyranny can be defined by what is legal for the government is illegal for it’s citizenry. …… what we accept we teach , we teach best what we most need to learn and in between what you most want and what what you most need … is what you probably deserve. All things do …. Come to pass.any man who gives up liberty for happiness , deserves neither .without peaceful resolution , there will surely be violent revolution.words from our past that seem relevant lately.peace and dignity

  • Pamela Valemont

    Time for the USA to face up to the horrible mess they have allowed their country to get into. Their President is valiantly leading the way with the international arms
    treaty, and it is up to the people to put pressure on the Senate to make sure
    it passes through. Simultaneously, they need to start on cleaning up their own
    back yard. This is not a case of their right to bear arms under the 2nd
    amendment at all, but a case of basic human rights and children’s rights as
    outlined in international charters on human rights, to which the US is a
    signatory. The human rights issue overrides the 2nd amendment issue, no question about it. People, particularly children, have a right to feel safe in their place of work, schooling, when walking the streets, in public buildings or in their homes. In the case of Newtown, there can be do doubt that the mental health authorities and current system plus Nancy Lanza’s ridiculous and irresponsible attitude to letting Adam carry 3 of her guns at the time she was extremely worried about his mental health, were the primary causes for these fatalities. However, his father is not exempt from blame. I have seen a picture on the Internet of Adam Lanza at one year of age or possibly younger, playing with a real gun, surrounded by an arsenal of weapons. His Dad now says he wishes he had never been born. I am sure Adam also wishes this now, in retrospect, that he had never been born, certainly not into that family. They, the crazy gun culture of America to which they ascribed and contributed, combined with the absence of tight gun laws in the USA are entirely responsible for this incredibly cruel tragedy. There is no psychological test that can adequately safeguard the community against such a crazed gunman, and no way of knowing when they will strike, where, or at whom. The only answer is to ban the guns out of the hands of the general populace, especially heavyweight military hardware, for whom such guns were not designed in the first place. An ultra right wing agenda, the Doomsday Preppers movement, idolization of neo-Nazi Anders Breivik and extreme right winger economist Ron Paul were among the key elements that also need to be addressed in relation to the the Newtown shootings. Time for a serious re-education program in the schools and universities. Ethics, morals and community responsibility need to be addressed in a big way in regard to combating the damage being done in the homes by some parents. A time for a national symposium too on mental health, particularly as regards gene mutation for Fragile X Syndrome accompanied by Autism, and the current treatments being metred out to patients. There may be a need for a closer look at how administration of drugs is monitored and by whom. Gun advocates, please do not reply to my post; I will not reply to you. There is nothing you can say to me in the face of this kind or horror that can possibly justify your stance. Thank you.

    Adam Lanza and the Newtown Massacre