Thursday, March 28, 2013

Thursday, March 28

Authorities today released details of Adam Lanza’s troubled life and his assault on Sandy Hook Elementary School, on December 14.
Lanza killed 26 children and educators in less than five minutes, firing 154 rounds from a Bushmaster XM15 military-style rifle. He was prepared to kill far more: Police found three more 30-round magazines on him, with another 15 rounds in his rifle.
The first new on-the-record details from law enforcement came in search-warrant documents unsealed by the Superior Court and in a written statement from Danbury State’s Attorney Stephen J. Sendensky III, who is overseeing the investigation.
Lanza killed himself in one of two classrooms he attacked, clad in military gear.
His mother, Nancy Lanza, was discovered at their home, dead in bed, shot once in the forehead. A rifle was on the floor. There were no signs of a struggle, and a gun safe was unlocked.
The state police affidavits and inventories of the items seized at two crime scenes, the Lanza home and Sandy Hook Elementary, described a home chock full of guns and ammo, including four weapons in a safe kept in Adam’s bedroom, near a gaming console and clippings of other mass killings.
Three books were seized. Two were about autism: “Look me in the eye, my life with Aspergers,” and “Born on a blue day – Inside the mind of an autistic savant.”
Neighbors and classmates of Mr. Lanza have said he had an autism variant known as Asperger syndrome, though investigators have never confirmed this.
The third book was the “NRA guide to the basics of pistol shooting.”
Governor Dannel Malloy, referring to the Bushmaster rifle and magazines containing 30 rounds, said “This is exactly why we need to ban high capacity magazines and why we need to tighten our assault weapons ban. The time to act is now.”
Anticipating today’s release, legislators gave up on an effort to bring a gun-control bill to a vote this week. Debate is expected next Wednesday in the Connecticut General Assembly on a bill that would ban the sale of military-style rifles such as the AR-15, as well as magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds. The XM15 is Bushmaster’s version of the AR-15. 

Senator Dick Blumenthal joined three Yale experts on climate science and communication for a panel discussion at the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies Wednesday night. WPKN’s Melinda Tuhus was there:

Blumenthal said the country lacks but needs an energy policy. He pointed out that Connecticut leads the nation in fuel cell production, and more jobs could be created to produce renewable energy of all kinds if they are not undercut by the boom in fracking for natural gas.

One expert on the panel said the jury’s still out on fracking’s impact, while another panelist, Nadine Unger, said its impact is overall negative.
The forum was co-sponsored by the Sierra Club, which is calling for shutting down Connecticut’s last coal-fired power plant, in Bridgeport.


A provision of New York’s new gun control law that would prohibit the sale of 10-bullet magazines was suspended.

The New York Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act, which Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed into law on January 15 of this year banned the sale of magazines holding more than seven bullets.

The law was set to go into effect on April 15.
However, according to the new amendment, eight-, nine- or 10-bullet capacity magazines will still be available for purchase after that date. Gun manufacturers do not yet make seven-round magazines. Still, gun owners will be able to load no more than seven bullets into the 10-round magazines.

Gun-rights supporters point to the many minor changes as proof the law is riddled with problems because it was passed in haste, and some are still calling for a full repeal.

Governor Cuomo has indicated he remains open to tweaking the existing law, but has no plans for a full repeal.

He said “You need a system and government regulation to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill.”

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