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Nation/World

December 17, 2012

Gunman had lots of ammunition

NEWTOWN, Conn. — The gunman in the Connecticut shooting rampage was carrying an arsenal of hundreds of rounds of especially deadly ammunition — enough to kill just about every student in the school if given enough time, authorities said Sunday, raising the chilling possibility that the bloodbath could have been even worse.

Hours later, President Barack Obama told mourners at a vigil that the nation is failing to keep its children safe. He pledged to seek change in memory of the 26 teachers and schoolchildren who were killed in the second-deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.

The gunman, Adam Lanza, shot himself in the head just as he heard police drawing near to the classroom where he was slaughtering helpless children, but he had more ammunition at the ready in the form of multiple, high-capacity clips each capable of holding 30 bullets.

The disclosure on Sunday sent shudders throughout this picturesque New England community as grieving families sought to comfort each other during church services devoted to impossible questions.

With so much grieving left to do, many of Newtown’s 27,000 people wondered whether life could ever return to normal. And as the workweek was set to begin, parents weighed whether to send their own children back to school.

Gov. Dannel Malloy said the shooter decided to kill himself when he heard police closing in about 10 minutes into the attack.

Police said they found hundreds of unused bullets at the school, which enrolled about 450 students in kindergarten through fourth grade.

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