12 people killed, 50 injured in Denver movie theater shooting

12 people killed, 50 injured in Denver movie theater shooting
# 20 July 2012 17:59 (UTC +04:00)
Baku-APA. A masked gunman released tear gas and opened fire into a crowded movie theater in a suburb of Denver early Friday, killing 12 people and injuring at least 50 others, APA reports quoting Xinhua..

The mass shooting at a midnight showing of the latest Batman movie "The Dark Knight Rises" in a mall in the Aurora suburb was the worst in the United States since the 2007 shooting on the Virginia Tech campus.

Aurora Police Chief Dan Oates told reporters that the shooter, aged 24, had been arrested in the parking lot behind the theater.

Oates had initially put the death toll at 14, but a spokesman later told NBC the toll had been revised to 12, saying 10 of the victims died in the theater and two died in the hospital.

The FBI said there was so far no indication of any links to terror groups.

Some moviegoers said they thought the attack was part of the show when they saw a person appearing at the front of the theater during the movie, pointing a gun at the crowd.

"Witnesses tell us he released some sort of canister. They heard a hissing sound and some gas emerged and the gunman opened fire," Oates said at a news conference.

Police and firefighters rushed to the mall shortly after the shootings occurred at around 12:30 a.m. local time (0630 GMT).

CNN reported at least 20 people were being treated for gunshot wounds in hospital, three of them in serious condition.

President Barack Obama, in a statement, said he was "shocked and saddened" by the shooting, and his administration would do everything to help victims in this tragedy.

"Michelle and I are shocked and saddened by the horrific and tragic shooting in Colorado. Federal and local law enforcements are still responding, and my administration will do everything that we can to support the people of Aurora in this extraordinarily difficult time," Obama said in a statement.

"We are committed to bringing whoever was responsible to justice, ensuring the safety of our people, and caring for those who have been wounded," he added.