12 people have been left dead and up to 40 injured after a gunman opened fire on a packed cinema in Colorado during a screening of the new Batman flick The Dark Knight Rises.
The gunman has been named as 24-year-old James Holmes. Ten victims were killed on the scene while two died from their injuries later in hospital. Among the deceased was a 6-year-old. According to reports, at approximately 12:30 a.m. a man in a gas mask opened fire on a crowd during the film screening at a shopping complex cinema in Aurora. Reports suggest that he set off a smoke bomb before opening fire. Police spokesman Frank Fania told reporters that Holmes did not “put up a fight” or “resist” his arrest.
Police have been forced to evacuate those close to Holmes’ Denver apartment after confirming that his home was seriously booby-trapped. Bomb experts have been called to the scene to identify and disarm explosive devices found on site.
Warner Bros. have subsequently released a statement following the shootings and have cancelled the Paris premiere of the movie. Their statement stated:
“Warner Bros. is deeply saddened to learn about this shocking incident. We extend our sincere sympathies to the families and loved ones of the victims at this tragic time.”
President Obama also spoke about the tragedy whilst continuing his campaign trial saying:
“If there’s anything to take away from this tragedy, life is fragile, time here is limited and precious. What matters at the end of the day is not the small things, trivial things…Ultimately it is how we choose to treat one another and love one another… The federal government will do whatever is necessary to bring this heinous crime to justice… We will take every step possible to ensure the safety of all of our people. We will stand by our neighbors in Colorado.”
Following the news, security has been heightened at cinemas nationwide for fear of a copycat shooting spree occurring. Many celebrities took to Twitter to display their shock and regret the incident.
Our thoughts are with the families of those affected by the tragedy.