Jan 31, 2013
My partner and I recently visited Newtown, CT in an effort to see the school and respectfully speak to the locals.
Before we even got off the highway there was a display of dozens of American flags on the shoulder. There was a large tented memorial located just off the freeway.
The tent had a sign on the outside that read, “Sandy Hook Memorial Never Forgotten”. Inside the tent was a chaplain who asked that I not take any photos. There were hundreds of stuffed animals and candles as well as children’s art from around the country, if not the world.
Inside there was also a donation jar that was close to full of money by mid afternoon. We signed one of the boards with condolences from Canada. I saw adults and children inside the tent on the two visits we made. No one was there who was actually impacted directly. I asked the chaplain if she had seen any children whom had been impacted to which she did not reply.
We then ventured onward to several locations including the school, firehouse, Gene Rosen’s, 100 Church Hill Restaurant, and The Newtown Bee office as well as the Newtown Police station.
We found that the school can not be seen from the front when coming down Riverside which is the only access to the school passing the volunteer firehouse. This may explain why there was no “media” photo of the broken or shot out glass at the schools front door.
Dickenson Road was closed with layers of orange cones and numerous “no trespassing signs.” The entire school is now enclosed with fencing, barbed wire, and no trespassing signs. The front of the school is entirely boarded up which would be consistent with broken glass.
The side door and other windows were not boarded up. No cameras could be seen at the front door or anywhere on the property. The lettering from the front of the school “Sandy Hook Elementary” had been removed.
Gene Rosen lives next door to the firehouse farther down past it. What does this mean? Ms. Soto’s students that ended up in Gene’s yard would have had to come down Dickenson and turn right, passing the firehouse to get to Mr. Rosen’s home.
A lady at the house would not answer the door when I knocked.
We sat at the 100 Church Hill Restaurant for a couple of hours. There were about 10 people inside in total and about 100 drawings from children from around the country (if not the world) offering condolences and well wishes.
No one was talking about this. My partner and I spoke with a couple in their early 20s for an hour or so. They were life long locals. Eventually they asked why we were in Newtown and they were told we had heard of their tragedy.
They did not comment further and we did not push the issue. Later, I mentioned that I had read online where some people had suggested that Newtown might have a lively Satanic community.
One of the two locals stated:
“I could believe that.”
We then went to the offices of The Newtown Bee where we spoke with the editor Mr. Curtis Clark. Mr. Clark did not offer a warm reception and stated from the start that they were concentrating the paper’s efforts on healing efforts and that he had little time.
I told him I was there to follow-up on The Bee’s report that stated, in part, “A man with a gun who was spotted in the woods near the school on the day of the incident was an off-duty tactical squad police officer from another town, according to the source.”
I asked who this officer was, and why he was in the woods. Mr. Clark told me that there was a number of “conspiracy theories floating around” and “some of them even suggest that the shooting didn’t even happen”.
Furthermore, “Snopes.com debunks many of these conspiracy theories.” I told him I was familiar with Snopes but it was The Bee that had reported that this was an off duty officer.
He would not address this report and became very agitated with me “interrogating” him. He then went on to say, “I don’t intend to discuss this any further with you,” referring me instead to the Newtown Police for any additional questions.
As I was walking out of the office I overheard a lady on the phone explaining to a caller that “there is an ongoing investigation,” referring the caller to Snopes.com.
Next, we went to the Newtown Police Department. I walked up to the glass window, picked up the phone on the wall and asked the man on the other side if I could speak with the Communications Officer. I explained why.
He then directed me to The Newtown Bee. I advised him that The Bee had directed me to them and was then to have a seat. I sat in a rectangular room with doors on both ends. Simultaneously police officers came through both doors.
I spoke with a female sergeant and told her I would like to know the identity of the off duty tactical officer that The Bee had reported. A male officer I was not addressing repeatedly ordered me to remove my hands from my pockets.
The sergeant told me that the man detained was the uncle of a student at the school who had gone to get his niece. I asked about the police scanner audio where the dispatcher reported that a caller from inside the school saw “two shadows” run by the gym at the back of the school.
Additionally, an officer apparently arriving at the scene stated “I’ve got ‘em (sic). They are running at me down Crestwood”. Crestwood borders that backside of the school beyond some woods.
The sergeant told me that this was confusion of the day and that there was not two individuals. She stated, “It was just someone who went crazy, killed a bunch of people and then killed himself. You have nothing to worry about. You are safe.”
I still wonder.
This article was posted: Thursday, January 31, 2013 at 5:32 am