Witnesses describe terror as gunman opens fire - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Witnesses describe terror as gunman opens fire

Posted: Updated:
James Holmes (Credit: University of Colorado Denver) James Holmes (Credit: University of Colorado Denver)
People use mobile devices as they wait outside Gateway High School where witnesses were brought for questioning after a shooting at a movie theater showing the Batman movie. People use mobile devices as they wait outside Gateway High School where witnesses were brought for questioning after a shooting at a movie theater showing the Batman movie.
yewitness Chandler Brannon, 25, sits outside Gateway High School where witnesses were brought for questioning after a shooting at a movie theater showing the Batman movie. yewitness Chandler Brannon, 25, sits outside Gateway High School where witnesses were brought for questioning after a shooting at a movie theater showing the Batman movie.
  • RelatedMore>>

  • After shooting: Obama, Romney speak as parents

    After shooting: Obama, Romney speak as parents

    Saturday, July 21 2012 6:47 PM EDT2012-07-21 22:47:09 GMT
    For a day, at least, President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney stopped assailing each other and spoke as heartbroken parents. 
    For a day, at least, President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney stopped assailing each other and spoke as heartbroken parents. 
  • Security increased at movies following shootings

    Security increased at movies following shootings

    Saturday, July 21 2012 6:46 PM EDT2012-07-21 22:46:59 GMT
    New York police posted officers at dozens of theaters around the city. 
    New York police posted officers at dozens of theaters around the city. Ticket-takers at a multiplex in Washington searched moviegoers' bags and purses. And one of the nation's biggest theater chains barred patrons from wearing masks or costumes. 
  • Colorado theater shooting suspect from San Diego

    Colorado theater shooting suspect from San Diego

    Saturday, July 21 2012 5:51 PM EDT2012-07-21 21:51:26 GMT
    A graduate student accused of killing a dozen people and wounding 59 others in a shooting rampage at a Colorado movie theater early Friday grew up in Rancho Penasquitos, where his parents still live. 
    A graduate student accused of killing a dozen people and wounding 59 others in a shooting rampage at a Colorado movie theater early Friday grew up in Rancho Penasquitos, where his parents still live. 
  • 12 killed, 58 wounded in Colo. theater shooting

    12 killed, 58 wounded in Colo. theater shooting

    Saturday, July 21 2012 2:06 PM EDT2012-07-21 18:06:09 GMT
    As the new Batman movie played on the screen, a gunman dressed in black and wearing a helmet, body armor and a gas mask stepped through a side door.
     
    As the new Batman movie played on the screen, a gunman dressed in black and wearing a helmet, body armor and a gas mask stepped through a side door. At first he was just a silhouette, taken by some in the audience for a stunt that was part of one of the summer's most highly anticipated films. 
  • Colorado suspect was brilliant science student

    Colorado suspect was brilliant science student

    Friday, July 20 2012 7:10 PM EDT2012-07-20 23:10:23 GMT
    James Eagan Holmes came from a well-tended San Diego enclave of two-story homes with red-tiled roofs, where neighbors recall him as a clean-cut, studious young man of sparing words. 
    James Eagan Holmes came from a well-tended San Diego enclave of two-story homes with red-tiled roofs, where neighbors recall him as a clean-cut, studious young man of sparing words. 
  • Mayor Sanders reacts to Colorado movie theater shooting

    Mayor Sanders reacts to Colorado movie theater shooting

    Friday, July 20 2012 5:04 PM EDT2012-07-20 21:04:24 GMT
    Mayor Jerry Sanders, who coordinated police response to a massacre in San Ysidro 28 years ago, called Friday's shooting that killed 12 at a Colorado theater "a tragic incident." 
    Mayor Jerry Sanders, who coordinated police response to a massacre in San Ysidro 28 years ago, called Friday's shooting that killed 12 at a Colorado theater "a tragic incident." 
  • Colo. suspect's family: 'Hearts go out to' victims

    Colo. suspect's family: 'Hearts go out to' victims

    Friday, July 20 2012 12:49 PM EDT2012-07-20 16:49:11 GMT
    A former medical student in a gas mask barged into a crowded Denver-area theater during a midnight showing of the Batman movie on Friday, hurled a gas canister and then opened fire,
     
    A former medical student in a gas mask barged into a crowded Denver-area theater during a midnight showing of the Batman movie on Friday, hurled a gas canister and then opened fire, killing 12 people and injuring at least 50 others in one of the deadliest mass shootings in recent U.S. history. 
  • Some of the deadliest mass shootings around world

    Some of the deadliest mass shootings around world

    Friday, July 20 2012 10:45 AM EDT2012-07-20 14:45:25 GMT
    It is one of the deadliest mass shootings in the history of US. Here is a look at some of the other mass shootings around the world. 
    It is one of the deadliest mass shootings in the history of US. Here is a look at some of the other mass shootings around the world. 

AURORA, Colo. (AP) — An eager audience forgoing sleep to take in the midnight showing of "The Dark Knight Rises" instead were witnesses Friday to a bloody mass shooting at a suburban Denver movie theater. Police said a man clad in black threw a canister that spewed smoke before he opened fire.Witnesses said that at first, they thought it was a prank or a stunt. Then the gunman shot steadily at the audience, not speaking. Some of their accounts:

___

Jennifer Seeger, 25, from Aurora said she was in the second row, about four feet from the gunman, when he pointed a gun at her face.

At first, "I was just a deer in headlights. I didn't know what to do," she said. Then she ducked to the ground.

The gunman shot people seated behind her.

"There were bullet (casings) just falling on my head. They were burning my forehead," Seeger said.

The gunman fired steadily except when he stopped to reload.

"Every few seconds it was just 'Boom, boom, boom,'" she said.

"He would reload and shoot and anyone who would try to leave would just get killed," she said.

Seeger said she began crawling toward an exit when she saw a girl about 14 years old, "lying lifeless on the stairs."

She saw a man with a bullet wound in his back and tried to check his pulse, but "I had to go. I was going to get shot."

"I thought it was showmanship. I didn't think it was real," she said.

___

Sylvana Guillen, 20, said when a man appeared at the front of the theater clad in dark clothing looking like a SWAT team member as Catwoman made an appearance in the movie, the audience "thought it was a joke, a hoax."

Then they heard gunshots and smelled smoke from a canister he was carrying, and Guillen knew it was real.

The gunman began walking toward the seats and firing. Guillen said she told her friend, Misha Mostashiry, "You better get ready to be shot."

Mostashiry, also 20, said they couldn't tell where the gunman was.

"All you could do is hope he didn't come for you," she said.

"We ran to the emergency exit and nothing happened. Nothing happened to us," Mostashiry said, with surprise and relief in her voice.

On their dash to the exit, they saw a man slip in the blood of a wounded woman he was trying to help.

___

Tanner Coon told the NBC "Today" show he was at the movie with a friend and his friend's 12-year-old brother when about 20 minutes into the movie the gunman appeared. Coon said that when they realized they were being shot at, they got on the floor in front of their seats.

After "a period of quiet" everyone started to run out.

He said he went to a row behind him and "slipped on some blood and landed" on a woman. He said he shook her, telling her they needed to get out, but she was unresponsive and he "presumed she was dead." He said the 12-year-old was "freaking out" and "really upset" after they escaped the theater.

___

Jaime Marshall, 23, said she had tickets to theater 9, where the gunman opened fire, but had decided before the movie to watch next door in theater 8 with friends.

She said that about 20 minutes in, as a shooting scene played out on the screen, she heard "fire cracker" sounds, and thought someone might be playing a joke. Marshall said people started leaving en masse and the alarm system started blaring. Marshall said she and her friends just sat there confused until someone ran in and told people not to go into the lobby because "someone's shooting people out there."

She said she wasn't sure if it was a prank, but the group decided to leave. Marshall said that as she made her way out of the theater, she saw a girl with a gunshot wound to her leg.

___

Moviegoer William Kent told CBS "This Morning" he was in theater 8, next door to the theater where the shooting happened.

"There was a lot going on in the soundtrack of the movie at that time. So in the beginning, I don't think people realized what was happening," he said.

Kent said he saw pieces of the wall fall out, apparently as shots came through, and the emergency alarm went off. The theater told people to leave.

"There was huge commotion to get out of the theater and when I exited, there were police with assault rifles running in."

"I went out to enjoy a movie and I ended up in a gruesome thing. I don't know how you would qualify it. I think it seems like a terrorist act."

___

Nichole Griek said her 13- and 14-year-old daughters were in the theater when they saw a man dressed in black and wearing a mask step out of the shadows at the front of the theater. They thought he was part of the movie presentation, before he threw out a canister that started smoking and opened fire.

Griek's daughters and their friends bolted from the theater, leaving behind their cellphones, shoes and other belongings. Griek's daughters were unhurt.

"You'd think you'd be able to drop your kid off at the movie theaters, but you can't," she said.

___

Chandler Brannon tells ABC's "Good Morning America" he was in the theater with his girlfriend when he saw smoke and heard popping sounds that he at first believed were fireworks.

When he realized they were gunshots, Brannon said he and his girlfriend and others ducked. He said he and his girlfriend played dead as what sounded like 50 to 70 shots were fired.

He said that because of the smoke, he didn't get a good look at the shooter but saw a silhouette of a person with a gun.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7sIiqq66rk

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 Midwest Television, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.