12 Shot Dead At “Dark Knight Rises” Screening In Colorado

Survivor thought the gunman — now in custody — was part of a “publicity stunt.” “Alex is still missing.”

The Century 16 movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado where a gunmen attacked movie goers during an early morning screening of the new Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises on July 20, 2012. Thomas Cooper / Getty Images

A gunman in a gas mask opened fire on the crowd at a midnight screening of the new Batman movie in a Denver suburb, killing at least 12 and injuring about 50, according to reports from the Associated Press.

The suspected shooter has been identified as 24-year-old James Holmes.

According to KDVR, the shooting began the moment Batman first appeared on screen. A witness told CNN that he saw a “guy slowly making his way up the stairs and firing, picking random people.”

Another witness told Sky News that he “thought it was a publicity stunt.”

A circulating cell-phone video apparently taken outside the theater. A man spattered with blood walks out of the theater at 00:52.

A Redditor claims to be one of the gunshot victims, uploads photos of himself in the hospital. (Warning: some graphic images.) / Via

One Denver woman at the screening live-tweeted the horror.

More on Twitter mourned friends who were confirmed dead.

President Obama released a statement with his condolences:

Michelle and I are shocked and saddened by the horrific and tragic shooting in Colorado. Federal and local law enforcement are still responding, and my Administration will do everything that we can to support the people of Aurora in this extraordinarily difficult time. We are committed to bringing whoever was responsible to justice, ensuring the safety of our people, and caring for those who have been wounded. As we do when confronted by moments of darkness and challenge, we must now come together as one American family. All of us must have the people of Aurora in our thoughts and prayers as they confront the loss of family, friends, and neighbors, and we must stand together with them in the challenging hours and days to come.

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney also released the following statement:

Ann and I are deeply saddened by the news of the senseless violence that took the lives of 15 people in Colorado and injured dozens more. We are praying for the families and loved ones of the victims during this time of deep shock and immense grief. We expect that the person responsible for this terrible crime will be quickly brought to justice.

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