“The Dark Knight Rises”, which opened last night, has been on the minds of millions over the past few months as it’s been one of the most highly anticipated films in years. But today, it is on our minds for a very different reason; at a screening of the movie at Century 16 Movie Theaters in Colorado, tragedy occurred when a 24-year old man–dressed in a bullet-proof vest and a gas mask–entered a theater and opened fire with various weapons, killing at least 12 people and injuring as many as 50 more, including children.
Reportedly, James Holmes threw tear gas into the theater to create confusion before shooting. Police later found him outside at his car, where he told them he had explosives stored somewhere. A thorough search has been conducted at his apartment complex, where residents were evacuated. Officials have confirmed that explosives were found, but have not elaborated on what kind as their investigation continues.
Witness Lamar Lane was at the midnight screening of the film with his brother.
“The suspect throws tear gas in the air, and as the tear gas appears he started shooting. It was very hard to breathe. I told my brother to take cover. It took awhile. I started seeing flashes and screaming, I just saw blood and people yelling and a quick glimpse of the guy who had a gas mask on. I was pushed out. There was chaos, we started running,” he said.
President Obama has issued a statement regarding Holmes and the horrific shootings, saying he will do whatever he can to help law enforcement.
“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.”