USA history reached a turning point on December 14, 2012. Adam Lanza committed the second deadliest school shooting in the country’s history, killing 26 people, including 20 children and six adults. In terms of child casualties, the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting is the deadliest on record.
The Sandy Hook shootings
Adam Lanza, born on April 22, 1992, in New Hampshire, was described as a young man “with deteriorating mental health” and someone who was “fascinated with mass shootings”, two years after the heinous act he committed.
On December 14, 2012, Adam Lanza killed his 52-year-old mother Nancy with a Savage Mark II rifle before heading to Sandy Hook High School, eight kilometres from his home.
At 09:30, Lanza arrived at the school, which had 700 students at the time. Its principal, Dawn Hochsprung, had put new security measures in place in an attempt to prevent school attacks. One of those was that everyone entering the school had to ring the school bell. However, Adam shot his way in, shooting at the principal.
School psychologist Mary Sherlach and assistant principal Natalie Hammond went outside to see what was going on, and Adam Lanza killed the former and injured the latter.
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More than 20 casualties
Police arrived at the school five minutes later, but Lanza had already shot 14 children in one class, as well as two teachers.
Upon entering another classroom, that of teacher Victoria Soto, the shooter killed six more children, as well as the teacher and a teacher’s aide.
Considering his purpose accomplished, Lanza then put an end to the brutal shootings by taking his own life in the same classroom. Those 11 minutes were filled with horror and tragedy that changed the history of the United States, or at least should have.
“We will have to come together and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like this, regardless of politics,” declared Barack Obama that afternoon.
The following day, Connecticut police released the names of the victims. There were six adult women, 12 girls and eight boys, the children all between the ages of six and seven.