Batman shooting: Gunman kills 12 at US 'Dark Knight' screening
A masked gunman killed 12 people at a midnight premiere of the new Batman movie in a suburb of Denver early on Friday, sparking pandemonium when he hurled a gas canister into the auditorium and opened fire on moviegoers.
About 50 others including children were hurt in the attack on the showing of The Dark Knight Rises in a mall in the Aurora suburb, some of whom were treated for the effects of tear gas, hospital officials said.
This is one of the most horrific nights I've ever had to work, said Comilla Sasson, an emergency doctor at University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora where 22 patients ranging in age from three months to 45 years arrived in private cars, police cars and ambulances.
Police took the suspect into custody in the parking lot behind the theater, Aurora Police Chief Dan Oates told a news conference.
Multiple media outlets named the suspect as James Eagan Holmes, 24, though it could not independently confirm his identity.
The gunman appeared at the front of the theater during the movie and released a canister which let out a hissing sound before gunfire erupted, police said.
Dozens of police were at the scene, and the authorities evacuated the area while they checked for any explosive devices. They said there was no evidence of a second gunman.
Police also searched the suspect's apartment building, breaking into a second-floor window after officers had been lifted in a crane, looking for explosives after the suspect made statements about explosives in his home. Police and sheriff's deputies from several jurisdictions swarmed the scene with heavy weaponry trucks from the bomb squad.
When we got out of the theater it was just chaos. There was this one who guy was on all fours crawling. There was this girl spitting up blood, witness Donovan Tate told KCNC television. There were bullet holes in some people's backs, some people's arms. There was this one guy who was stripped down to just his boxers. It looked like he was shot in the back or something. It was crazy.
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