U.S. NEWS Updated July 20, 2012, 10:57 a.m. ET
By MIGUEL BUSTILLO And DEVLIN BARRETT
A gunman in a crowded Colorado movie theater that was screening the latest Batman movie opened fire shortly after midnight, killing at least 12 people and wounding more than three dozen others.
Law-enforcement officials familiar with the matter identified the suspect as James Holmes, 24 years old, of Aurora, just east of Denver. He has no criminal record and doesn’t appear to have links to extremist or terrorist groups, according to two officials familiar with the investigation.
The assault at the Century 16 Movie Theater in Aurora began around 12:30 a.m. Friday, when the gunman set off a canister of what authorities believe to be tear gas. He was armed with a rifle, a shotgun and two pistols, officials said, and opened fire from the front of the theater. The exact sequence of events isn’t yet clear, although witnesses said they thought he had been seated in the theater, left through an emergency door, returned with his weapons and started shooting.