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Mike Powers Sandy Hook Interview Debunked

January 27 2013

mike-powers-sandy-hook-interview-debunked

This article is a response to an interview by Joyce Riley of Mike Powers regarding the shooting at Sandy Hook. I am going by the transcript put out by insanemedia. It isn't word for word, but is for the most part pretty close. It was getting long so I am going to split it up into two parts.This is Part I. And here is Part II.

When a name isn't supplied with a quote, the speaker is Mike Powers.

CAUTION: I have not suffered a personal loss from this tragedy and so at times speak about some of these issues very bluntly. More so than someone might if they were affected by the shooting. Please keep that in mind. I in no way want to cause anyone additional grief.

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Adam Lanza doesn't exist

"...up on to this point there is nothing solid about Adam Lanza...There is no conclusive evidence that Adam Lanza ever existed..."

Actually, there is a LOT of evidence that Adam Lanza existed, which includes, among other things, photographs of him, and a multitude of accounts from family members, neighbors, classmates, etc. Not accepting this evidence or not believing in it does not mean it does not exist. Mr. Powers is not a magician and can't simply make it disappear. If he would like to establish that the evidence is incorrect or not genuine than he has to actually provide counter-evidence to support that claim.

"...on multiple public record resources sites, we had no luck whatsoever in locating anything to indicate that he was actually a real person."

Not a very useful claim. What "public record resources" where used and how hard of an effort was put into it? If he means online public record resources such as Peoplesmart, than it shouldn't be surprising to find little information on Adam Lanza. These records tend to have information easily gleaned from sources such as credit reports and social media sites, but based upon what we know about Adam Lanza, he had no social media profiles and had little if any activity that would show up on a credit report. He didn't own any property, likely had no credit cards or bank accounts, and didn't have a job (at least not reported). There's no reason he would show up on one of these sites. The only public activity he did have (that we know of) is attending college, but college records are relatively private and also wouldn't show up in the record.

"We found tons on his brother Ryan Lanza, but nothing on Adam himself."

As would be expected considering his brother lives on his own, has a job, presumably owns a vehicle and has credit cards, bank accounts, pays taxes, etc.

"There is an interesting anomaly that takes place in 2009, where Adam Lanza, according to the media drops right off the face of the planet..."

It is only an anomaly if there is no explanation for it or if that behavior was out of character. In this case, every one who has spoken of knowing Adam has described him as being very socially withdrawn. Him withdrawing into the seclusion of his bedroom at his house is therefore not really unusual. Additionally, around that time, he was dealing with the divorce of his parents and his brother moving out. These events could have been traumatic for him which would account for further seclusion.

"...he has no electronic footprints."

He has no electronic footprints that you know of. It isn't unusual for people to use aliases online (Mike Powers seems to be an alias so this shouldn't really be surprising to him). Especially in the gaming communities, where no one uses their actual name. And for someone who is socially withdrawn it also wouldn't be unusual to hide behind fake identities.

“Adam is an enigma, at best. The individual just completely has no indication of ever having been anywhere."

I suppose anyone is an enigma when you completely ignore everyone with a relationship to him, such as his former teacher, Jennifer Huettner, his barber, Bob Skuba, the family plumber, Peter Wlasuk, the advisor to the technology club Adam belonged to, Richard Novia, neighbor Jim McDade, Mother's friend, John Bergquist, family members, Ryan Lanza (brother), Marsha Lanza (Aunt), and Dorothy hanson (Grandmother), former classmate, Joshua Milas, Mother's friends, Louise Tambascio, Mark Tambascio, Amanda D'Ambrose, Russ Hanoman, and Police Chief Donald Briggs Jr., former classmates, Alex Israel and Alan Diaz, ...

I could go on but it is getting tedious and I think the point is made.

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Photoshopped photos

“Adam Lanza’s picture started coming out. It’s just so peculiar. I have friends in the photo analysis industry who have taken the official photos of Adam and have explained to me how photoshop works, and have indicated that they have discovered layers in all of these official photographs. There is a black and white version, there is a color version that is exactly the same, the image of itself is peculiar."

Even were we to accept Powers' claim that he knows people who have acquired an official photo, the existence of layers wouldn't mean anything. Having different versions of a photo depending on how it is to be used is standard practice. There isn't any reason not to have these different versions as different layers in the same file. What exactly is layers supposed to prove regarding an alleged conspiracy?

As to it being an "official photo," I have been unable to find any reference to the authorities ever releasing one. Photos of Adam Lanza where available before the police even officially identified Adam Lanza as the shooter, so it seems unlikely that these photos are "official photos" at all. They are probably just the same photos everyone else has and their origins are at best murky. Any analysis of such photos is essentially useless. Those photos could have been downloaded, uploaded, and manipulated many times by anyone. Without a clear chain of evidence, this assertion is meaningless.

"I was talking to Dr. C. who was investigating this also, and he made a statement, he told me that they had taken a picture of Adam Lanza. You know there is always some weird photograph that they put out there, this one appears to be a school picture of Adam Lanza, and he they had their IT department go over this and it is definitely Photoshopped without doubt.”

Again, without knowing the history of the photo, the claim of being photoshopped means nothing. Even if they are correct, it could have been photoshopped by anyone, anytime, anywhere. It could have been photoshopped by the original photographer. Photoshop is not an exotic or rare tool. Finding a photo that has been manipulated is like finding a car with dirt on it. Photos, like cars, get dirty as they move through life. Unless you get one straight off the assembly line, it's unlikely to find one that is pristine.

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More Adam Lanza isn't real stuff

“The statistically and categorically bizarre thing about this is, by this time, several family members would have historically appeared on shows like..."

Firstly, there have been too few events such as this to draw any statistically meaningful conclusions. Even if there were, this particular event is, in my opinion, unprecedented, both because of the overwhelming media attention and the unique abuse being levied by conspiracy theorists. Additionally, I'm not sure his claim is right at all. I don't remember the Loughner, Holmes, or the Choi family ever showing up on these shows. I could be entirely wrong, but I'm curious which families he is talking about.

It is also important to point out that neither Adam or Nancy seemed to have any strong family connections. The two closest family members (father Peter and brother Ryan) seemed to mostly be estranged from them, so who exactly was supposed to show up?

"...shows like Today, Good Morning America, The View, all the hard leftist outlets that in my estimation force feed the opinion to the American People and then tell them what to think and how to think..."

Well, I guess now we know what Mr. Powers' agenda is.

"You know, the sheer lack of information, when you use resources like Spokeo, you will see that there is Peter and Nancy Lanza, you can see the family tree with one son, Ryan. There is nothing of Adam Lanza. The most bizarre part of all this is, that somewhere somehow everybody pops up."

“It doesn’t matter if you have an electronic footprint or not. If you go to the Dr. when you have the sniffles, if you have a bank account..."

This has already been discussed. Based upon what we know of Adam Lanza, it seems unlikely that he had any credit activity at all that would show up. Going to the doctor is also confidential information that should not show up on sites like Spokeo (or any site, for that matter).

"...if you have a cell phone which obviously they did, because these officials reported to have found multiple cell phones which i found bizarre in a household that only has 2 people.”

Mr. Powers needed photoshop explained to him, so perhaps he is simply a technological dinosaur. I literally have 4 cell phones sitting on my desk at this very moment. Only one is active, but still, there is nothing unusual about having old ones sitting around. Plus, even if Adam had a phone, that doesn't mean it was in his name, so that still wouldn't show up anywhere.

“The computers that he had the foresight of to smash the hard drives up. The FBI Forensics weren’t able to pull anything from it. These are all things that draw suspicion."

All reports state that Adam was both very smart and knowledgeable about computers, which would suggest he would be fully aware of the need to destroy his hard drive to prevent any data recovery. Nobody wants strangers going through their stuff. Mass murderers, probably, especially so. Nothing about that seems suspicious to me.

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The mysterious Nancy Lanza

“As far as the mother Nancy Lanza is concerned, it has been nothing but lie after lie after lie about her. Well, she was a Kindergarten teacher here and everybody knew and loved her. Well ooops, the players didn’t back that play. Now it’s, oh we don’t know who she is, she never worked here. We have not been able to locate any evidence to suggest that she ever had a teacher certificate on file with the State of Connecticut.”

Bad reporting does not a conspiracy make, and doesn't really count as "lie after lie after lie." Maybe mistake after mistake after mistake...

“These schools staff themselves and admitted that no one knows who she is. Then we find conclusive data to proof that Nancy Lanza was indeed in fact an employee of Morgan Stanley."

Nancy Elaine Lanza
Registered Titles: Broker-Dealer Agent
Individual CRD #: 2181808
Works for Advisor Firm: Morgan Stanley Smith Barney
Current Office Employment Dates: 06/01/10 – Present
Office Details: Cityplace 1-185 Asylum St-21st Fl, Hartford, CT 06103, United States

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No, what you have found is that some person named Nancy Elaine Lanza works for Morgan Stanley.

Mr. Powers specifically mentioned Spokeo so I used that to search for Nancy Lanza in Connecticut. The results, seen to the right, seem to clearly show at least two Nancy Lanzas living in Connecticut. One is a Nancy E. Lanza in her 60s with multiple addresses and the other is Nancy J. Lanza in her 50s with an address of Sandy Hook.

We know from reports that Nancy Lanza lived on Yogananda St in Sandy Hook. Also the age of 50s would fit well with the age of her children. Furthermore, numerous news reports identify her as Nancy J. Lanza, and her obituary states her name as Nancy J. Lanza, age of 52, so this listing would seem to be the correct one. Clicking on the listing we find the family tree that was earlier mentioned by Mr. Powers (seen below).

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Clicking on the profile of the Nancy E. Lanza in her 60s, however, gives an entirely different family tree. How exactly is Mr. Powers confused about this? There is no way he could have looked up Nancy Lanza on Spokeo and not recognized that these two Nancy Lanzas are entirely different people.

A check on Intellius confirms the two Nancy Lanzas. It can't really be any clearer than that.

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Property tax records confirm that a Nancy J. Lanza lived on Yogananda St. in Sandy Hook (seen below).

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I am not going to post it here, but Nancy E. Lanza also has a Facebook page which confirms the family relationships identified by Spokeo and her employment with Morgan Stanley.

IMPORTANT
Mr. Powers could argue that he has simply made a mistake. I don't really see how he would make it in this case, but still, it does happen. The real problem is with the way he has presented the information. He didn't just say it is a possible lead which needs further investigation. His exact words were "conclusive data to pro[ve]." With such strong wording, he had better be absolutely certain of his findings. To try to pass of rubbish research as if it were gold-plated is very telling, in my opinion. This alone drops his credibility to near nothing.

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Adam Lanza motive

Joyce Riley:“Ok, let’s move to the motive of Adam Lanza, to go to a school and allegedly killed 20 children. What do we know about that?”

Mike Powers:“Simply put, none existent...it’s highly suspect and questionable, that he would harbor any kind of ill feelings from his Sandy Hook Elementary school days all the way up to his 20′s..."

Really? Seems to me that traumatic events in our formative years is a major reason why people do the things they do. In fact, it seems like a traumatic experience as a child would be one of the likely possibilities for his behavior.

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Lauren Rousseau's car

"...it was [Lauren Rousseau's] car out in the parking lot that also sustained massive amounts of gunfire, which indicates there was gunshots fired outside in the parking lot."

Videos and photos of Rousseau's car show 3 bullet holes. That hardly constitutes "massive amounts of gunfire." Why the exaggeration? Who knows. Additionally, it indicates nothing but that it was hit by bullets. The shootings took place in classrooms that face the parking lot so the only barrier between Lanza and the parking lot were windows, and considering the number of rounds allegedly fired, it isn't surprising that vehicles were hit.

Powers doesn't mention it but around the web there are additional questions raised about Rousseau's car, so I might as well address them while I am at it.

Wrong angle
Some people have suggested that Lanza couldn't have hit Rousseau's car because other vehicles would have been blocking any possible lines of fire. The people making these claims, however, base their trajectories off of the footage from the helicopter, which will not be accurate due to the angle of the helicopter. Below is an example.

The text that went along with the photo:

"Now with your knowledge of the angle her car would have been parked at in relation to the shooter, how is it possible for a bullet hole to penetrate the side of her car at the trajectory shown above? Was there no car beside her? This is just one of the many mysteries about the official story. More research coming in different articles, stay tuned."

From above, however, we can see two possible angles by which Lanza could have hit Rousseau's car.

PLEASE NOTE: This is from google maps, not from photos of the incident, so the cars aren't exact . Rousseau's car was parked in the 5th spot in and in the front row, there were cars in the 3rd, 4th, and 7th spot.

PLEASE NOTE: This is from google maps, not from photos of the incident, so the cars aren't exact . Rousseau's car was parked in the 5th spot in and in the front row, there were cars in the 3rd, 4th, and 7th spot.

For Rousseau's car to be the only one hit at random would be surprising, considering the tight angles. However, there is evidence of other cars being hit. First a photo showing other cars in the parking lot taped off. It shows 3 cars next to Rousseau's taped off and the vehicle in the front row parked in the 7th spot.

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It has also actually been reported that shots fired by Lanza passed through the classroom windows and struck vehicles in the parking lot. The Hartford Courant also mentions three cars in the parking lot being hit by bullets.

Car wet, rust formation, changed position?
Some have also speculated as to why the car was wet, why rust had already started to form, and why the vehicle was apparently moved. Those are reasonable questions. The reasonable answer is that the car was filmed several days after the shooting. The first appearance I have found of the car is in a story by CBC of Canada on December 18th. Checking weather conditions for December 17th and 18th we find that it rained a little bit on both of those days.

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911 calls

"This draws another question, why was there only one call to Sandy Hook dispatch?"

Speculation. We do not know how many calls came in. One witness, Shari Burton, a teacher's aide, describes calling 911 directly after Lanza shot his way into the building and the operator telling her that several calls had already come in.

“None of the neighbors heard massive amounts of gunfire, from all these enormous weapons?"

"[M]assive amounts of gunfire" and "enormous weapons" are again unnecessary exaggerations. outside of the building it was only been reported that a small number of shots were fired, which has been mentioned by some neighbors. Both Gene Rosen, and Mergim Bajraliu reported hearing shots.

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Percussive impact

"The typical AR 15 Rifle has a 16 inch barrel, and in States where it is not legally prohibited, comes with a muzzle break. Anybody who has any education in the firearm industry will tell you, that this combination of the 5.56 millimeter rounds with the muzzle break and the short barrel, produces a much more loud then average hyper-sonic snap. They’re consistently known of being louder.”

"...how could this individual walk into an enclosed space, with an un-suppressed carbine and fire, again to Connecticut State Police LT. Paul Vance, 100 of rounds. He fired hundreds of rounds in the school, and was still carrying on his person hundreds more that he had not discharged. Essentially you are talking about 165 decibel or better percussive impact on the human nervous system, inside of an enclosed space like that. That’s simply just not possible.”

With all of the technical jargon, this sounds like an impressive question. Unfortunately for Mr. Powers it is so ridiculously simple to answer that it requires only a single word: earplugs.

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Adam Lanza home-schooling

“There is also no documentation that Adam Lanza was ever home schooled. According to accredited home schooling, Nancy would still have to submit his tests scores in order to be accredited, there will be materials provided by the state boards of education.There has been absolutely none of that.”

According to a former teacher, Jennifer Huettner, Adam was home-schooled in 7th and 8th grades, then attended Newtown High School from 9th to 11th. From there he went to Western Connecticut State University where he received his GED and took additional classes.

I'm not sure where Mr, Powers gets his information about home-schooling in Connecticut. Their law only requires that a student receive equivalent education to what would be received in a public institution, but there don't seem to be any mandatory requirements for determining or documenting that equivalence. The only thing which does exist is suggestions which include filing paperwork with the local school superintendent, but even that only mentions including "basic information about their educational program." Nowhere have I found any requirements about testing, submitting test scores, or acquiring specific learning materials.

Furthermore, its entirely possible that there are existing records regarding Adam's home-schooling. Seems to me these records aren't protected the same as public education records, but that doesn't mean a superintendent would just hand them over to anyone.

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Adam Lanza weapons kit

"...even basic infantry operators these days, will carry a minimum of 210 rounds, on a standard combat level, which is 7 magazines, one in the weapon and six on the kit, but what they alleged him to have had was 100 of rounds that he shot, hundreds of rounds that he didn’t."

It sounds like Mr. Powers is suggesting that the amount of rounds Adam allegedly carried is somehow an impossibility. For all we know he was carrying a back-pack or satchel with 20 loaded magazines in it (600 rounds worth). That would only be 20 pounds, which is not even remotely an impossibility. Of course that is purely speculative. There are hundreds of different gear options we could imagine. My point is only to say that carrying a large number of rounds is not even remotely close to an impossibility (or really even terribly challenging).

"Now in order for him to be in full compliance with the story and actually carrying those hundreds of hundreds of rounds, what that indicates to me is that he would have had to have pockets on both sides of the vest."

Yes, that's pretty standard stuff. I really don't know what point he is trying to make.

"So Adam Lanza is about 120 pounds, they say he came into the building approximately carrying his ammunition and body weight in kit.”

This is another credibility destroying statement by Mr. Powers. That he was carrying that much weight is beyond absurd and into the realm of asinine. Since Mr. Powers has gone on so long about this, let's put together one hypothetical outfit: a tactical vest (or agglomeration of pieces) which includes a chest element with 4 pockets for AR-15 mags, a waist element with 4 double pockets for AR-15 mags, two large side pouches (or series of small pouches) that may wrap around partially to the back and can each hold 4 pistol mags, and two drop leg holsters for the handguns.

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There are a lot of assumptions in this theoretical load-out. The guns are probably pretty close, but we don't know if he had any accessories on the AR-15, and they specified only that the Glock was a 10mm (I have assumed the specific model was a G20 SF). And of course the number of magazines and how he had them strapped on is largely speculative. My point is simply to show a kit which is well within the realm of possibility. Would it be relatively bulky and heavy? Sure it would. I wouldn't want to go hiking with it, but in a 'combat' situation and dosed with adrenalin, it wouldn't represent much of an impairment at all.

There are of course lots of other possibilities. It is possible he was wearing a relatively light and clean rig and was carrying backup ammo in a satchel or backpack.

So, where does Mr. Powers get the additional 88 lbs of gear? I have no idea. It is a bewildering claim.

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Building entry

“As far as the weapon is concerned, gaining access to the school. I have a picture that shows the front of the school, with all the glass being intact."

Photo mentioned by Mr. Powers.

Photo mentioned by Mr. Powers.

Once again, Mr. Powers is completely incorrect. What he has is a photo that only shows the very top of 5 panes of glass. More importantly it is clear that there is a part of the entrance wall which is hidden from view (3 whole structural bays in fact). You can see those extra bays, which contain the doorway, in the photo below. In one interview with authorities, Lt. George Sinko, Newton Police, states that Adam "shattered the glass adjacent to the doors." The pane in question is in the 6th bay and is not visible in the photo offered by Mr. Powers. The account of Barbara Sibley confirms the glass next to the door being shattered. Adam could have fired at the glass pane as we walked up to it and not even broken stride to breach the building.

UPDATE: January 30, 2013

And here we actually have an image of a hole in the pane of glass adjacent to the doors.

Helicopter footage of a hole in the front entrance window at Sandy Hook.

Helicopter footage of a hole in the front entrance window at Sandy Hook.

“As far as access to the building is concerned, you are talking about a 120 pound mentally disabled kid..."

He was not by any reports "mentally disabled." It is rumored that he may have had Aspergers, but those with Aspergers are generally high-functioning and quite bright.

"..who’s carrying an immense amount of weight and equipment..."

It is "immense" only when you imagine him carrying far more than he reportedly was.

"..btw one thing that I do wanted to point out is, that if he was wearing a tactical vest with all these magazines on them, a tactical vest is made for heavy set guys, he is a skinny lanky kid. He would have a very difficult time locating equipment properly."

There is an enormous number of options available when it comes to tactical vests/rigs. While he may have had fewer choices and may have had to have been more creative than a burlier man, it certainly isn't an impossibility for a smaller framed person to find appropriate gear. Once again Mr. powers is presenting mildly challenging as if it were a virtual impossibility.

“This again presents the problem of dynamic flow, first, how did he compromise the door? All security doors are hinged on the inside. If it was glass, it would have been made of sufficient thickness to sustain weather conditions, slamming of doors, so you’re not talking about a single pane of glass here."

While the doors might have sturdier glass, it would not be surprising if the side glass panels are single panes. Either way, ordinary glass doors and windows aren't going to withstand a .223.

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Ballistics

"The particular round he used is also very well documented for fragmentation, when it strikes its target, it tends to fragment apart and create a type of form, where it bounces off and goes in different directions.”

The only official comment I have seen about the ammunition used is a comment made by the ME, Dr. Carver, who said that the bullets were designed so that "the energy is deposited in the tissue and so the bullet stays in." Does that necessarily mean fragmenting? I don't know. Even if it does, that doesn't mean the overall vector of energy doesn't remain pushing through the glass.

Below are some ballistic gel results of a variety of .223/5.56 cartridges shot through safety glass and you can see that even with safety glass they all have plenty of energy to penetrate well past the initial barrier. Also, not all of them fragmented.

"This also leads to yet another problem. They are saying he piled all these kids up in the corner and just started shooting."

Who is saying that exactly? I've never heard anyone say he piled them up. There do seem to be reports of them being huddled in corners and such, but I haven't heard anything officially. And even if they were relatively bunched up that doesn't mean they were somehow perfectly aligned several bodies deep relative to the angle of fire.

"Statistically and physically speaking I’m not convinced that this round would have the ability to penetrate through that thick off a wall of meat, I apologize for further grotesque reference, but it’s necessary to explain it so people can understand. Penetration is everything, for every inch of flesh that this round penetrates, it looses energy.”

“So for it to have enough energy to get all the way through to the end of the pile, for lack of better terms is rather unbelievable in my opinion?"

I'm not really sure where this whole kid pile theory came from but it is very speculative and to me really doesn't make much sense. Which exact round was used and what the ballistic performance of those rounds was is also very speculative. Even a bullet which can leave a lot of its energy in a target can still have deep penetration. Its really not that simple of an analysis.

We do know that one girl survived the first classroom, but we don't know if that was from being underneath others. It may have been, in which case, perhaps Mr. Powers is right about the lack of penetration but completely wrong about how bunched up the children were.

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Lockdown procedure

"Why did you not push to children out the window? You heard somebody shooting outside in the hallway, or in another classroom, why would you huddle up in the corner and read the children Christmas stories. Why wouldn’t you open the Windows, push the kids out the window and tell them to run to the fire-station, which was just up the end of the driveway.”

It's called a lockdown procedure for a reason. The point is to lock the building down. Everyone gets in a room, secures the room and waits. Whether that is really the best procedure or not is worth debating, but it can't really be evaluated based upon a single incident.

Emergency procedures need to be relatively simple and repeatable and appropriate for a variety of situations. It is easy to look back at a specific situation and say that teachers should have done something else, such as tossing the kids out the window, but there just as easily can be situations where tossing kids out the window is the wrong choice. If teachers are in a relatively safe and secure location, it makes sense to stay put rather than to evacuate into an unknown.

Also, in terms of police responding to a situation, a lockdown makes sense. It reduces the chaos of innocents being all over the place and narrows the search for a hostile element.

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911 calls (again)

“At this point in time I can tell you that we have not located anything other then the initial single call to Sandy Hook dispatch. There has been no reference, radio reference.com is one of the most reliable sites out there as far as recording off these things there has not been any subsequent calls in, and that’s really what kind of takes us by shock and surprise here."

Radio reference monitors radio traffic, not telephone calls. We don't know how many calls came in, and it is not surprising that that information has not been released.

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