Lanza “was under no extreme emotional disturbance for which there was a reasonable explanation or excuse.”
The summary released by the lead investigator, State’s Attorney Stephen Sedensky III, describes a 20-year-old gunman who had “significant mental health issues” but had sure knowledge of what he was planning: Besides having the mass murder spreadsheet, he smashed his computer hard drive and he used earplugs during the shooting.
Lanza killed 20 first-graders and six educators with a semi-automatic rifle at the school on Dec. 14. He also shot his mother in the forehead inside their home. He committed suicide with a handgun as police arrived at the school.
Sedensky said there was no clear indication why Lanza chose Sandy Hook Elementary other than that it was close to his home. He attended Sandy Hook from first through fifth grade, but he was never assigned to the classrooms where the shootings took place.
The report said that in 2005, he was diagnosed with Asperger’s disorder — an autism-like condition that is not associated with violence — and that he lacked empathy for others and behaved strangely.
The spiral-bound manuscript that Lanza wrote in the fifth grade at Sandy Hook, “The Big Book of Granny,” was among items seized from Lanza’s home. There is no indication he ever handed the book in at school.
The main character has a gun in her cane and shoots people, and another character likes hurting people, especially children
Lanza’s mother often took her son shooting and, according to the report, she had prepared a check to buy him a pistol for Christmas.
She was concerned for him and said that he hadn’t gone anywhere in three months and would communicate with her by e-mail only, even though they were living in the same house. The mother never expressed fear that she or anyone was in danger from Lanza, the report said.
Nancy Lanza was out of town in New Hampshire the week before the shooting, arriving home the evening of Dec. 13.
Nobody was allowed into Adam Lanza’s room, not even to clean, according to the report. It said Lanza also disliked birthdays, Christmas and holidays and did not like to have his hair cut.
He also didn’t like to touch doorknobs, his food had to be arranged on the plate in a certain way, and he changed clothes often during the day. He was a loner at school and was repelled by crowds and loud noises.
Lanza “was undoubtedly afflicted with mental health problems; yet despite a fascination with mass shootings and firearms, he displayed no aggressive or threatening tendencies,” Sedensky wrote.
“Some recalled that the shooter had been bullied; but others — including many teachers — saw nothing of the sort.”
Sedensky said the hard drive taken from Lanza’s bedroom might hold clues but was so damaged that data will probably never be extracted from it.
A timeline released with the report indicates that nearly six minutes passed between the arrival of the first Newtown police office and the time officers entered the school. The report said officers were operating under the belief there may have been more than one shooter.
Whether the delay made any difference was unclear. The report said Lanza killed himself about a minute after the first officer arrived.
Donna Soto, the mother of slain teacher Victoria Soto, said in a statement that nothing could make sense of the shooting.
“Yes, we have read the report, no, we cannot make sense of why it happened. We don’t know if anyone ever will,” Soto wrote. “We don’t know if we will ever be whole again, we don’t know if we will go a day without pain, we don’t know if anything will ever make sense again.”