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Dark Night: Gunman kills 12 at US Batman premiere

A heavily armed masked gunman opened fire at an early Friday showing of the new Batman movie in Aurora, Colorado, on Friday, killing 12 people and injuring 38. Yashwant Raj reports. US shooting timeline | Shootout at The Dark Knight Rises screeningvideo

world Updated: Jul 21, 2012 02:43 IST
Yashwant Raj

A heavily armed masked gunman opened fire at an early Friday showing of the new Batman movie in Aurora, Colorado, on Friday, killing 12 people and injuring 38.

The gunman was arrested later from the theatre's parking lot. He was identified as James Holmes, a 24-year-old neuroscience PhD student at the University of Colorado. His motives were not clear.

"We do not believe there was an apparent nexus to terrorism," said White House press secretary Jay Carney.

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney both cancelled part of their campaign events for the day, saying there will be other days for politics.

"We are committed to bringing the culprit to justice, ensuring the safety of our people, and caring for those who have been wounded," said Obama.



Police officers take witness statements outside a move theatre in Aurora after an unidentified gunman opened fire at a crowded premiere of The Dark Knight Rises.



The police have said the Aurora gunman "appeared" in the front of the theatre screening The Dark Knight Rises just past midnight and threw a smoke bomb before opening fire.

A federal law enforcement official told a local TV channel the smoke bomb described by witnesses was tear gas.

The gunman is reported to have used four kinds of guns: an AK-47 type rifle, a shotgun and two handguns. This raised once again questions about easy availability of guns in the US.

New York mayor Michael Bloomberg asked Obama and Romney to clarify their stand on gun control, a divisive issue with most Republicans avowedly opposed to it.

When asked about President Obama's views, Carney said,: "The President believes we need to take common sense measures that protect the Second Amendment rights of Americans while ensuring that those who should not have guns under existing laws do not get them."

Colorado shooting suspect: A doctoral student with few signs of violent edge | Parallels between the film and the shooting | Family of suspected Colorado gunman releases statement | Shooting casualties include US troops: Pentagon | Blogger, sportswriter among Batman shooting victims | US shooting timeline | Shootout at The Dark Knight Rises screeningvideo