Category Archives: elementary school

My view: Sandy Hook conspiracy theories. (Part 2)

Now, the second and final part of this page, dedicated to quashing the ‘theories’ of the Sandy Hook hoaxers.

CONTENTS (Part Two):

  1. Are the ‘victims’ still alive?
  2. Deceased Sandy Hook principal at Boston bombing?
  3. Is Adam Lanza still alive? Was he a real person?
  4. Why were there no tears in the aftermath of the tragedy?
  5. Online memorial pages created before tragedy?
  6. Would frantic kids be difficult targets for an unstable teenager?
  7. Why is the entire Sandy Hook building being demolished?
  8. Concluding point.

1) ‘Victims’ still alive?

Another claim by some hoaxers is that some of the supposed Sandy Hook victims are not victims at all, and that they are still alive. This claim is based upon the discovery of some photos of people who look similar to some of those apparently killed during the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. The victim who is most commonly used in this hoax theory is Emilie Parker (mentioned above), but there has also been a claim made about Victoria Soto, a teacher who was also (apparently) killed in the shooting.

Madeline Parker (2nd girl from left - red skirt) is pictured here with President Obama.

Madeline Parker (2nd girl from left – red skirt) is pictured here with President Obama.

A portrait of the Parker family, dated 2010.

A portrait of the Parker family, dated 2010.

Starting with Emilie Parker then, the hoax claim is based on the fact that a girl who looks similar to Emilie is shown in a photograph with President Barack Obama, soon after the shooting. The key word in that sentence is similar, and the similarity is expected, as the girl pictured with Obama is Emilie’s sister, Madeline. The heart-warming photo is shown here. The hoaxers claim that Madeline is in fact Emilie, and this is proof that Emilie didn’t die in the Sandy Hook shooting. First of all, this is a preposterous claim, as surely the people orchestrating the hoax would be sensible enough to not photograph one of the supposed victims, when they had recently created a fake scenario which would mean she was dead.

Proof that Emilie Parker is NOT the girl pictured with Obama after the shooting.

Proof that Emilie Parker is NOT the girl pictured with Obama after the shooting.

Secondly, if you look at the close-up photos shown here, you can easily see that Emilie and Madeline Parker have different appearances, and therefore it is easy to see that Emilie is not the girl pictured with Obama after the shooting. There are three main differences in their appearances:

  • Emilie’s nose is wider at the base than Madeline’s.
  • The girl’s hair partings are in different places (Madeline’s is more central)
  • Madeline has a more prominent chin than her sister.
  • CLICK THE PHOTO TO ENLARGE!

Clearly the girl photographed with Obama is Madeline Parker, not her sister, Emilie.

There are a couple more hoaxer points about the Emilie Parker case, but neither of them have a leg to stand on. One suggests that the Parker family portrait has been photoshopped, due to the ‘peculiar’ shape of Samantha Parker’s hand (the girl at the center of the photo). This is a poor claim though, as several photos have surfaced online of other children making hand shapes identical to Samantha’s.

Finally, some hoaxers question why Barack Obama and the children in the photo (above) are smiling so much. Well, this photo was taken only a day or so after the shooting, the children wouldn’t have fully understood the idea of death at that point, nor would they have completely acknowledged the permanent loss of their siblings. They are entitled to be smiling due to their juvenile innocence. Obama, in these children’s eyes, would be a figure of hope and cheer if they saw him smiling. This is a photo that these children will treasure for the rest of their lives, as Obama was comforting them at this point.

Victoria Soto, aged 27, was killed in the shooting, but saved the children in her class

Victoria Soto, aged 27, was killed in the shooting, but saved the children in her class.

Moving on to the idea of Victoria Soto still being alive, this is a more fruitless claim than the Emilie Parker one, as there is no photographic evidence that supports this. Victoria Soto was hailed as a heroine of Sandy Hook, because when she heard gunfire, she herded her class into a store closet before Lanza reached their classroom. As he entered, Soto told him that the class were in the gym. Lanza shot her, but the children in the closet all survived. For hoaxers to try and tarnish the memory of such a remarkable woman is quite frankly, sickening.

One of the hoaxer claims about Victoria Soto (and the most ludicrous one) is that the picture of here shown here, is obviously photoshopped, due to an “impossible leg-to-torso angle.” Apparently hoaxers have never tried sitting down before, because the manner in which Soto is sitting in the above photograph is far from impossible. This ridiculous claim can be found through this link: http://nodisinfo.com/Home/victoria-soto-isnt-real-fake-photos-fake-tweets/.

Carlee Soto, sister of Victoria, is pictured in this iconic photo, as she learns of her sister's death.

Carlee Soto, sister of Victoria, is pictured, as she learns of her sister’s death.

The second claim made by hoaxers is that Victoria Soto was acting the role of her sister (Carlee) on the day of the shooting. Carlee Soto was pictured in the iconic photograph of her in shock, as she realizes that her sister was killed in the shooting. However hoaxers dispute this, and they say that the woman in that photo isn’t Carlee Soto, but in fact her sister, Victoria, playing the role of her own grieving sister. This can be easily quashed by simply looking at the close-up facial photos of Victoria and Carlee Soto (shown below).

The family resemblance is clear, but they are far from identical. There is no way that they are the same woman, meaning that this hoaxer theory is worthless.

Carlee (left) and Victoria Soto (right)

Carlee (left) and Victoria Soto (right).

There are a number of other minor claims, from hoaxers showing us photos of grieving Sandy Hook parents and then photos of crisis actors and saying that they look similar. But all of these claims can be quashed in the same way that I have done above (for Victoria Soto and Emilie Parker). “Similar” does not mean “the same”!

Dylan Hockley, aged 6, was killed in the shooting.

Dylan Hockley, aged 6, was killed in the shooting.

That same rule applies to the final claim made by hoaxers, regarding the victims still being alive. Dylan Hockley, a 6-year old boy killed in the shooting, is apparently (according to hoaxers) still alive. There is a photo of a child standing behind Obama, at a speech he made a month after the shooting, this child looks similar to Dylan, but if you look closely it is not.

The photo of Dylan Hockley’s look-alike is shown below, pictured with Obama during a Presidential speech. At first glance they look very much alike, but once again, similar doesn’t mean the same.

  • The child with Obama has larger ears.
  • Dylan clearly has striking blue eyes, the eye color of the child below is darker.
  • The child with Obama is clearly older than Dylan, he has longer arms and broader shoulders.
  • Dylan has thicker eyebrows than the child with Obama.
Dylan Hockley's look-alike, with Obama in January 2013.

Dylan Hockley’s look-alike, with Obama in January 2013.

Simple, face recognition software could undoubtedly provide us with more differences between Dylan and this child photographed with Obama. But even a superficial look at the faces, and the bodies of these two children shows that they are not the same person.

Any further claim by hoaxers concerning Dylan Hockley, Victoria Soto or Emilie Parker is therefore fruitless.

2) Deceased Sandy Hook principal at Boston bombing?

Very short section here, because it’s that easy to debunk. There is a fake image made by a hoaxer that apparently shows Dawn Hochsprung’s name on the list of casualties at the Boston Marathon bombing 2013. Hochsprung was the principal at Sandy Hook school and she was killed during the shooting there. No official casualty list has Hochsprung’s name on, nor is there any photographic evidence of her being in Boston that day, but some hoaxers still try and promote this story. Give me strength!

REAL: Dawn Hochsprung at Sandy Hook (left), and apparently at Boston (right) FAKE

REAL: Dawn Hochsprung at Sandy Hook (left), and apparently at Boston (right) FAKE

Another badly-formed story by some hoaxers is that Hochsprung wasn’t a casualty in Boston, but she was there on that day. The story keeps changing, huh? The image that is used to support this claim is laughably fake. Apparently there was a news interview with someone called Donna that day, and hoaxers have photoshopped Hochsprung’s photo into that news snapshot. The picture is shown next to this paragraph. The image on the left is the news coverage of Sandy Hook, revealing that Hochsprung was a victim. The image on the right is the faked news snapshot which suggests that Hochsprung was still alive and was in Boston on the day of the bombing. Obviously faked, whichever hoaxer created this claim, hang your head in shame!

3) Adam Lanza alive? Was he a real person?

Adam Lanza, the Sandy Hook shooter.

Adam Lanza, the Sandy Hook shooter.

Another claim made by hoaxers is the idea that Adam Lanza, the 20-year old madman who murdered 26 people during the school shooting, is actually still alive. Adam Lanza lived with his mother about five miles away from Sandy Hook elementary school, he was reportedly autistic, although he was described as intelligent but seclusive. He attended Sandy Hook school for a brief time, but he was bullied heavily there, which may have been a motive for his attack.

Ryan Lanza, being arrested on suspicion of committing the murder which his brother had committed earlier that day.

Ryan Lanza, being arrested on suspicion of committing the murder which his brother had committed earlier that day.

The main claim made by hoaxers about the gunman, is that he and his brother, Ryan, are the same person, therefore he is still alive. So it’s the same old story about people who look similar, but they’re not the same person. The two photos next to this paragraph don’t necessarily prove this, because both of them are quite obscure in terms of facial details, although at first glance they do have some differences. Ryan has a wider face and a different hairstyle, but these are inconclusive.

However the group of photos below, shows Adam and Ryan Lanza growing up, as different people.

  • Adam Lanza has always had quite harsh, naturally-wide eyes from a young age, whereas Ryan’s eyes appear more ‘normal.’
  • Ryan looks more well-built and generally bigger than his brother.
  • In the picture of Ryan, second from the right, you can see he has some muscle on his arm, whereas photos of Adam show that he has skinny arms even in his late-teens.
  • Adam also has a thinner, more hollow-looking face, whilst Ryan has a more rounded face.
  • Apart from the very first photo of Ryan, he has always had a clear parting in his locks of hair, whereas Adam has always had a straight fringe.
  • The brothers also have different noses, Adam’s nose is slightly upward-facing at the base, whilst Ryan’s is pointier and downward-facing (where his nostrils are).
  • Adam has a thinner neck than his brother.

There are probably a few more differences, but the point of the matter is clear, Adam and Ryan Lanza are not the same person, and this is clear from the photos of them growing up (shown below). Therefore it is entirely reasonable to believe that Ryan is still alive and Adam is dead, after killing himself in the Sandy Hook shooting last year.

Adam Lanza (top row) and Ryan (bottom row). Are they the same person? No!

Adam Lanza (top row) and Ryan (bottom row). Are they the same person? No!

Even having just proven beyond reasonable doubt that Adam and Ryan Lanza are not the same person, there will still be hoaxers who refuse to acknowledge this. They can’t be helped, but one of the other pieces of evidence that hoaxers use is the fact that Ryan Lanza’s ID was found on his brother’s corpse, at the Sandy Hook crime scene. Adam Lanza did have one known ID of his own, this was for a college he attended in 2009. The photo for it was the rather manic-looking one of Adam (third from the right in the above picture). On that ID, Adam refused to describe himself or even disclose his gender, affirming his seclusive nature.

But why was Ryan’s ID at the crime scene, when he hadn’t seen his brother for two years? This, by the way, was the reason for the initial confusion about whether Ryan or Adam had committed the crime, thus leading to Ryan’s precautionary arrest (shown above). Anyway, most forms of ID are valid for two years or more, so Adam having a valid ID of his brother at Sandy Hook is perfectly credible. Although, even an invalid ID would have had the same effect initially.

The main question is why Adam was using Ryan’s ID in the first place? It doesn’t point to conspiracy, it’s far more likely for someone as insecure and seclusive as Adam Lanza would have wanted to protect his identity right up until his death. It is also possible that he wanted to disrupt the investigation as much as possible by providing false ID, making the work of the police force (part of the society he despised) more difficult. He had already stolen his mother’s car (after killing her), which would be a slight obstacle in the investigation, as it wouldn’t have been registered in his name.

4) No tears in the aftermath of the tragedy?

Similar to the theory regarding Robbie Parker’s smiling (see Part One of this post), another hoaxer idea is that there is little or no evidence of people crying at the school, after the tragedy occurred.

Clearly not everyone cries, even after family bereavement.

Clearly not everyone cries, even after family bereavement.

Again this is an idea which has been exaggerated and blown out of proportion by the conspiracy believers. There were people who genuinely cried in the aftermath of the shooting, and there is photographic evidence to prove this. Of course there were also many people who didn’t cry. This is, once again, natural human behaviour, not everyone grieves in the same way! For instance, at a funeral, not everyone cries. Hoaxers seem to be expecting everyone at a murder site should be bawling their eyes out, well this simply doesn’t always happen. A simple Google search can show how there are many people who are unable to cry initially, even after a relative’s death (a sample of this is shown in the snapshot).

Especially after such a shocking event as Sandy Hook, the shock manifests itself first, the grief comes later – this was the case for many people, evident by the photos taken at the crime scene. The photos in the compilation below can all be found on Google images, (search: Sandy Hook crying).

Some are crying, some are in shock, the grieving process after the shooting was very varied .

Some are crying, some are in shock, the grieving process after the shooting was very varied .

Other hoaxers are suggesting that President Obama faked crying in his first national address following the shooting. This is an erroneous claim, he certainly didn’t fake crying as there are photos which show Obama with teary eyes, as if he was welling up. You can clearly see the wetness in his eyes, in the photo above.

You can also see three photos in the compilation above, which show children crying. Whatever hoaxers may think, those children are not crisis actors, and you cannot get an untrained child to act grief and crying in that way.

The hoaxer argument about some people not crying after the shooting is fruitless. Not everyone grieves in the same way, after the shocking event at Sandy Hook, many people reacted in a stunned silent manner. Only later, when away from the public eye, would their tears arrive, and the exterior grieving began. Other people, reacted by crying immediately. It is not concerning or peculiar, as sentient beings we are very diverse, and the reaction to something as complex as death is naturally different from person to person.

5) Were there online memorial pages created before the shooting?

How was this page created four days before she died?

Was this page created four days before she died?

Admittedly, this was another hoaxer point that was difficult for me to find a solution before, but as with the previous ones, there is a sensible one. First, the point itself is that there were a number of pages on the Internet, honoring the victims of the tragedy, which were apparently created before the tragedy occurred. For instance, a Facebook page entitled “R.I.P Victoria Soto” was apparently created on 10th December 2012 (four days prior to the shooting). You can see the date at the bottom of the page, in the screenshot (click to enlarge).

Well, there are two possible causes for the erroneous date on this obituary page. Firstly, there is no proof or evidence which shows that this page was created under the title “R.I.P Victoria Soto.” The erroneously dated page was first noticed on 15th December (the day after the tragedy). Before the tragedy, the page may have been named something else, maybe something completely unrelated to Victoria Soto or Sandy Hook. If the page was created under one name, and then changed to another name, the creation date will remain the same. The date of the name change isn’t listed on Facebook. Of course you can never entirely disprove the idea of it being created as an “R.I.P” page, but logic states that you can never disprove something completely. The onus is on those who believe the hoax, to prove that it was called “R.I.P Victoria Soto” even when it was first created. Good luck.

Hoaxers also question why this particular Facebook page was deleted a few days following the tragedy. They seem to believe that this was an effort to hide the evidence of a hoax or cover-up, by deleting the already-leaked page. Well this was not the reason. Sadly the page had become a target for conspiracy theorists to vent anger and speculation, as opposed to being an obituary/tribute to Victoria Soto. You can see some of these distasteful comments in the snapshot above. To prevent this page from being a forum for anti-Sandy Hook animosity, it was deleted to protect the dignity of Victoria Soto’s family.

Secondly, the Internet is hardly reliable when it comes to dates on websites. This idea is easily visible with a time-restricted Google search. If you search “Sandy Hook school shooting” on a search engine, and then restrict the results to 2010 (for example), you will still get detailed webpages about the 2012 school shooting. This is visible in the Google snapshot below. The dates on Internet pages refer to the date that they were originally created on, not necessarily the latest version of the webpage’s material. Yes, erroneous dates are far from rare when it comes to pages of the Internet.

Sandy Hook in 2009!? 2011!? (Don't always trust the Internet)

Sandy Hook in 2011? 2009!? (Don’t always trust the Internet!)

  • Did Adam Lanza die the day before the shooting?
Did Adam Lanza die the day before the shooting?

Did Adam Lanza die the day before the shooting?

A small but critical sub-point now, which relates directly to the above points, as it surrounds the idea of erroneous Internet dates. According to the Social Security Death Index (SSDI), Adam Lanza died one day before the shooting took place, as they initially listed his death date as December 13th, 2012. This page was eventually edited to show the correct date, but of course, hoaxers seized on this mistake and claimed that it’s proof that Adam Lanza isn’t real or he didn’t carry out the Sandy Hook massacre.

Well there is no evidence to suggest that this erroneous date wasn’t the result of an innocent mistake. The rest of the evidence and reporting suggests that Adam Lanza was in Newtown, Conectcicut on that Friday morning, and did carry out the the shooting. As you can see from the webpage snapshot below, the SSDI (Social Security) incorrectly lists around 14,000 Americans as dead, each year! The mistake made with Adam Lanza’s death date clearly isn’t an isolated incident.

The SSDI's other fatal mistakes.

The SSDI’s other fatal mistakes.

6) Would frantic kids be a difficult target for an unstable teenager?

One of the more gruesome questions I’ve seen asked by some hoaxers, is how Adam Lanza would have killed so many children (small targets), if he was so unstable? Well, Lanza’s instability was confined solely to his mind. Physically, apart from being quite a skinny person, he was perfectly healthy. Worse still, his mother had given him weapons and target training as he was growing up.

So as well as being physically healthy and familiar with the concept of shooting on target, Lanza was shooting at panicking children, who were trapped in small classrooms and had little or no idea of what was truly going on. As horrible as it sounds, the children at Sandy Hook were easy targets for Lanza.

Moving swiftly on.

7) Why is the entire Sandy Hook building being demolished?

The final point in this debunking page is another fairly simple one for me. Several hoaxers have highlighted the recent news that the Sandy Hook school building is to be completely demolished, and claimed that it is a sign that there is a cover-up, as they don’t want anyone to ever see inside. There are a couple of reasons why this claim is clearly false.

The original Sandy Hook school building has been vacant since the shooting, during which time it has been boarded up, and a tall fence has been erected around the perimeter of the school. Meanwhile, the surviving teachers and pupils are temporarily attending a previously disused school, which has been renamed Sandy Hook Elementary school. Loud noises are prohibited within that school, as even the sound of a door slamming brings back painful memories for the survivors of the shooting. The original Sandy Hook building is to be demolished and a new school will be built in its place, at which time, pupils and teachers will return.

The original Sandy Hook building (left) and its temporary replacement (right).

The original Sandy Hook building (left) and its temporary replacement (right).

Hoaxers say that the high security around the original building (tall fence and CCTV surveillance) is proof that there is a cover-up going on. There is no proof that this is the case. The Sandy Hook building is a no longer a school, it is a federal crime scene, and the place of death for 26 innocent people. Sadly, the hoaxers have proved themselves wrong. The security is there to prevent desperate conspiracy theorists and other trouble-makers from breaking into the school, disrupting the investigation and possibly damaging the property. It is a scene of a mass murder, the authorities don’t want people strolling in at will, the security is a necessity after such a traumatizing event on that location.

The now-disused Sandy Hook building is to be torn down.

The now-disused Sandy Hook building is to be torn down.

The decision to demolish the entire school did perplex me slightly, although it didn’t make me think for one moment that it was proof of a hoax. The decision was made at a town meeting in Newtown, and the families of surviving Sandy Hook students had the final say. The cost of demolishing the old school and building a new one is said to be around $55 million, and will be completed by 2016. The only reason I was confused by this decision is because only one section of the school was affected by the shooting. After giving it more thought, I came to the conclusion that the entrance/reception area of the school was also affected, and those attending the school would have to walk through that area every school day, knowing of the murders which took place there. And whilst the whole building wasn’t physically affected by the shooting, the whole school was affected by the panic, the knowledge of the massacre and the sound of gunfire. Moreover, it is the decision of the parents who would be sending their children to school. If their kids are uncomfortable or afraid going back into a building where their friends were slaughtered (reasonable), then their wishes must be respected.

The hoaxers seem to have forgotten about the idea of respect. Even if there was evidence of a cover-up in the school, this evidence would be hidden/removed before they reopened the school. The demolition of the school is due to the discomfort of parents and schoolchildren, not because of a cover-up. If anything, the demolition of the school is evidence of a genuine massacre, not a cover-up. The people behind the hoax would have rather spent about $5 million, hiding all evidence of a cover-up and then reopening the school, instead of $55 million demolishing it and building a new one.

8) Concluding point.

The evidence highlighted on this page (part one and part two) is sensible and fact-based proof that Sandy Hook wasn’t a hoax. Yes, there are anomalies here and there which are hard to explain (eg. Robbie Parker smiling and the false-dating of memorial pages) but all of them can be explained to some extent with common sense and facts. Other points that have been quashed on this page (eg. Dawn Hochsprung at the Boston bombing) are so blatantly false that it’s embarrassing for anyone who believes them.

At the end of the day, a hoax that is convincing enough to fool the entire world would need a huge amount of money and dozens of people willing to help. The idea that all this was prepared and then carried out perfectly, without anyone finding out is ludicrous. As is the idea that dozens of people have been so quiet about it since, not one official leak has been recorded. No way!

For a genuine conspiracy to exist, there would have to have been a good reason to create the hoax in the first place. Why would Obama’s government carry out such an extensive and complex hoax, just to pass a ban on guns. It seems like a lot of unnecessary work, considering that President Clinton passed a ban on assault weapons in 1994, without the help of a fake-massacre.

The evidence and all sense tells you that Sandy Hook was not a hoax. None of the points which support the hoax idea are debunk-proof, and none of them are based on fact. The speculation and “what ifs” are very unconvincing, and to those who think it’s clever to speculate about mass murder: it isn’t, now get a life.

sandy-hook-ribbon

 

R.I.P to the 26 Sandy Hook victims.

God Bless America.

 

 

 

PS- I’m sorry but I have had to disable comments on this page, as that section was being regularly abused by people who were not here for a discussion, rather they came to read 1-2 sentences of my blog, and then chuck hateful insults in my direction. I apologise to anyone who genuinely wished to have a proper discussion, I’m afraid that some of the conspiracy “hoaxers” ruined it for everyone.

My view: Sandy Hook conspiracy theories. (Part 1)

On the day that I have chosen to publish this post, it is exactly six months since the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting. It is a Friday, with one week until the summer break begins, marking the end of a traumatizing academic year for Sandy Hook. It was also a Friday, with one week left until a school holiday, when tragedy descended upon the Connecticut school. Half a year on, the painful memories remain.

In the days that followed the tragedy, many people began flooding on to social media sites, venting their angry and speculation-driven opinions about the truth behind the horrifying events of December 14th, 2012.

This is always the case after most global events, there were conspiracy theories appearing in the days following 9/11, the death of Osama bin Laden, and even after the Boston Marathon bombing earlier this year.

All I can say is, scum rises to the surface. But now, six months on, it’s time to put an end to these conspiracy theories, once and for all. Hoaxers always condescend and belittle people for not believing their anti-media propaganda, yet they can never acknowledge the failings of their own ‘theories’. This blog post shows exactly how rubbish their claims are.

Image

Having read and (seriously) considered many of these ‘theories’ on the YouTube comments pages, I have come to the conclusion that they are not fact based. In fact each and every one of these theories can be attributed to opinionated speculation by Internet users who want some attention. The only people who genuinely believe these theories are clueless, the only reason they believe the conspiracy idea, is because they don’t want to believe the alternative. Most of the “hoaxers” are gun-loving Americans who call the Sandy Hook tragedy fake, because the only alternative is to admit that their assault firearms are overly powerful and dangerous for civilian use.

In this post, each of the main points behind the “Sandy Hoax” idea will be debunked, using impartial common sense, statistics, photos and FACTS to support my view of these shockingly offensive conspiracy claims (which are based on internet speculation, naivete and twisted information.

CONTENTS (Part One):

  1. No photos of Crime Scene
  2. No evidence of Bodies
  3. Contradicting stories from the media/eyewitnesses
  4. How many shooters? What weapons were used?
  5. Robbie Parker
  6. Was Sandy Hook a real/functioning school?

1) No Photos of the Crime Scene

Many conspiracy theories have been based upon the idea that because there is no photographic proof of the shooting taking place, it can’t have happened. It is true that no interior photos of the school during the shooting have been released by authorities. This contrasts the Columbine massacre of 1999, where CCTV footage was released of the suspects inside the college building. However this can easily be explained by looking at the plain obvious.

There was only one place in Sandy Hook school where a CCTV camera was running anyway. This was at the front of the school, in the reception area. People seem to have forgotten that within a couple of seconds of entering the reception area, Adam Lanza had shot dead two people already, Dawn Hochsprung (the school principal) and Mary Sherlach (the school psychologist). What with the distressing image of Lanza shooting his way through the locked glass entrance, and these two staff members being gunned down as they tried to apprehend the gunman, what sort of sick-minded person would want to see those images anyway? For the privacy and respect to the people who died in the reception area that day, that footage cannot be released.

Image

Dawn Hochsprung (left) and Mary Sherlach, died in one last, heroic effort to protect Sandy Hook Elementary school.

Elsewhere in the school, there are no confirmed reports of CCTV cameras being in place.

The conspiracy theories also bemoan the lack of crime scene photos, of the school after the tragedy. This is a point that can be simply debunked. According to the website of the Connecticut State Police, the investigation at Sandy Hook is still on-going. This is to be expected, the Columbine investigation conclusion wasn’t published until five years after the massacre.

Whilst Sandy Hook is still a crime scene under investigation, the police cannot publicly release crime scene evidence and information, this includes photographic evidence. Of course, in time, maybe we’ll see photos of bullet holes in the wall, blood on the floor, etc. But whilst the school is still being investigated that won’t happen.

There was an online petition last week, created on the request of the Sandy Hook victims’ families, to block the release of “gruesome crime scene photos and footage.” As far as I can tell, they were referring to photos of their loved ones’ bodies, which some hoaxers had wanted to see publicly, to prove that the investigation was real. Firstly, any person who wants to see a photo of a child’s corpse is a sick, twisted person, and they belong in the same group as Adam Lanza in my opinion. Secondly, the fact that these families are having to campaign to protect the dignity and privacy of their slaughtered loved ones, shows how desperate the conspiracy theorists are.

They are clutching at straws, trying to find anything that will support their case. But the government refusing the release photos of dead bodies is not a supportive point in their “hoax” story. May I just also add, that even if they did release photos of the deceased victims’ bodies, then all the hoaxers will simply say they were photoshopped. That’s the problem with hoaxers, they will keep their desperately false ‘theories’ alive, even if it is a blatantly lost cause.

Aerial footage clearly shows the smashed entrance of the school

Aerial footage clearly shows the smashed entrance of the school

The photo on the left is a snapshot taken from a YouTube video. It is aerial footage of the immediate aftermath at Sandy Hook, and it clearly shows the smashed-up glass entrance to the school. This is the visual evidence that many hoaxers have chosen to ignore.

 The full video can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AK0v4JhQ35Y

2) No evidence of bodies

Many hoaxers also believe that some of the victims’ parents weren’t allowed to see their children’s bodies, after they were murdered at Sandy Hook. Apparently this is a reason to believe that there were no bodies at all. The harrowing fact is, some of the victims’ remains were so badly damaged, that they were kept from the parents’ eyes, to avoid the mental trauma that may have followed. Many of the dead were shot multiple times, in fact some children were apparently shot 11 times. I am not a parent, but I can imagine that seeing my child’s little body, mutilated by 11 rounds of gunfire, would be a torturous sight.

A body on a gurney, outside Sandy Hook school.

But hoaxers are blowing this out of proportion, the families had the choice whether to see their children’s bodies or not. The funeral of Noah Pozner was open-casket, despite him being shot 11 times during the shooting. The lower half of Noah’s face was covered by a cloth (as his jaw had been destroyed by gunfire), but the rest of his body was visible for his family. This information is derived from an interview with that boy’s mother. The link to this is here: http://www.ctpost.com/local/article/Angela-Carella-Grieving-mothers-who-wanted-the-4208256.php#ixzz2IkfkBrIL.

One of the more ridiculous hoaxer outbursts that I have seen, is that the final resting place of the victims is unknown, and therefore we cannot be sure they exist. To anybody who sees this as a sensible point, you are a moron, why should the victims’ families publicly disclose where there loved ones’ funerals were held or where they were buried/cremated?

3) Contradicting stories from the media/eyewitnesses

In the immediate aftermath of the tragic shooting, there was understandable confusion and a sense of chaos among those who had gathered outside the school building. The news crews and panicking relatives were arriving in numbers, and the police were desperately trying to control the situation and secure the area. At a time of utter turmoil, of course there would be confusion surrounding the true events of what had happened in Connecticut that morning, especially seeing as everyone had had a different experience of the shooting.

The post-shooting chaos is evident in this picture, taken a short distance from Sandy Hook.

The post-shooting chaos is evident in this picture, taken a short distance from Sandy Hook school.

For instance, there was confusion about whether there was one shooter or multiple ones. Confusion about how many people had died, what weapons had been used inside the school, what exactly the shooter had done during his rampage, where the bodies were positioned. The list of initial confusion and contradiction goes on and on, and if there was still so much contradiction now (six months later) then the hoaxers may have had a case. But this confusion is natural after such a momentous, disastrous and tragic event. No one outside the school knew exactly what had happened. Only later, when the official story was released, did things become clearer.

But hoaxers are ignoring all sense, instead they are claiming that all of this contradiction is a clear sign that Sandy Hook was staged. For a start, this makes no sense whatsoever. Even if the shooting was a hoax, then there still would have been a set course of events (in the Sandy Hook script) that people who were acting in this hoax would have to follow. There wouldn’t be contradictions. If anything the contradictions make it even more obvious that this wasn’t staged.

The contradictions themselves stem from the media’s presence outside the school that day. Naturally, each news crew would’ve wanted exclusive information as the tragedy unfolded, therefore they would’ve been asking all sorts of people for their account of the day’s events. Some of these people may have been survivors from the school, others may have been passers-by. Either way, the information these people provided was unreliable, because the only people who could have given a first-hand eyewitness account of the shooting were (by majority) killed in it. Only when the official story was later released, after the police had gathered all the evidence and reliable eyewitness accounts, were the falsities of the original media reports brought to light. Of course not everything the media said was false, but much of their ‘knowledge’ of what happened inside the school was speculation and not factual.

Therefore, the contradictions between the media reports and the official story is no reason to believe the hoaxers stories. It is natural for the media and other people to provide inaccurate information in the immediate aftermath of a major tragedy, and Sandy Hook was no different.

To quote another debunking page about the Sandy Hook conspiracy (link below), “It’s hardly surprising that some witnesses gave contradictory statements, that police initially followed up on the possibility of multiple shooters, or that some news outlets initially reported inaccurate information. All of this is typical in the crush for information…in the wake of disasters involving large numbers of deaths.” The official story is the only account worth reading today, as is contains the investigated information that police obtained from the tragedy.

Linkhttp://www.snopes.com/politics/guns/newtown.asp

Factual argument or YouTube speculation?

Factual argument or YouTube       speculation?

One account which is definitely not worth reading is the hoaxers’ accounts. Their account, unlike the official story, is merely Internet speculation, and also full of contradictions. For instance, some hoaxers say that there were multiple shooters, others state that Adam Lanza was the lone gunman. Some hoaxers say that people did die but the government did it, others claim that no one died at all. These contradictions, unlike the ones surrounding the official version, cannot be attributed to the chaos and confusion after the tragedy. Instead they show that the hoaxers’ stories are not fact-based, just misinformed speculation.

4) How many shooters? What weapons were used?

Two of the main points that have arisen from the contradiction argument was the idea of multiple perpetrators and confusion over what firearms were used in Sandy Hook. Both of these ideas have been explained in detail below.

The idea of multiple shooters and suspects can once again be attributed to the chaos around the school soon after the shooting. In their initial sweep of the crime scene, police detained four suspects in precautionary measures. All four of these detainees were released with no charges later in the day.

  • The man in the woods: According the the Newtown Bee, the well publicized case of the suspect in the woods is no reason to believe the theory of multiple shooters. This man was merely an off-duty police officer from another town, who had arrived at Sandy Hook to assist the Newtown police.
  • Chris Manfredonia: This man is the father of a 6-year old girl who attended Sandy Hook, and he was arrested by police as he ran around the perimeter of the school, desperately trying to gain access so he could find his daughter (who survived thanks to her teacher locking her in a closet).
  • Third unidentified man: This man was reportedly arrested by police, close to the Sandy Hook fire station (next to the school), however he was released when police confirmed that he was an innocent passer-by.
  • Christopher Rodia: This man’s name can be heard on a police radio transmission during the shooting, he had initially been wrongly identified as the owner of the impounded car outside Sandy Hook (which Adam Lanza had used). He was pulled over by police in a nearby town but was released when the police realized their mistake.

It was unhelpful that the media used these people in their coverage and the unfolding tragedy, a point which relates back to the idea of the media’s errors causing contradictions in the Sandy Hook story. However in reality, and looking at the detailed explanation of innocence for each detainee (above), it is clear that these four people had no part to play in the shooting that morning. There is therefore, no solid evidence that there was more than one shooter at Sandy Hook that morning.

The police remove a shotgun from the trunk of Lanza's car.

The police remove a shotgun from the trunk of Lanza’s car.

There is also apparent contradiction over what weapons Adam Lanza used during the shooting. The official story states that he used a semi-automatic rifle (AR-15) in the school, but hoaxers question this, because the same weapon was apparently found in the trunk of Lanza’s car (parked by the front entrance of the school).

However this can be simply explained: the firearms found on Lanza’s body inside the school included two handguns, and the AR-15 rifle. The firearm found in the trunk of the car was a shotgun, not a rifle (this is clear from the image above). Therefore there is no evidence to cast doubt over the official story’s claim, that two handguns and an AR-15 were used inside the school.

The Connecticut State Police confirmed this when they issued an update on their website in January this year. This can be found at: http://www.ct.gov/despp/cwp/view.asp?Q=517284. They also reveal that Lanza used the AR-15 to murder his victims, then one of the handguns to commit suicide. No other weapons were used in the shooting.

The guns used by Adam Lanza, inside Sandy Hook school

The guns used by Adam Lanza at Sandy Hook. 

The media (once again) are to blame for the misinformation and contradiction that surrounded this part of the investigation. One day after the shooting (and over a month before the CT State Police officially confirmed what weapons were used), NBC News released false information about the guns which Lanza used. This news report has since circulated on the Internet, and hoaxers hail it as “proof” than an AR-15 was not used. Well, wrong again hoaxers, this is only one of many examples of poor reporting by the media soon after the Sandy Hook tragedy. There is no evidence or proof which states that an AR-15 rifle wasn’t used inside the school during the shooting, apart from one unconfirmed, erroneous news report.

5) Robbie Parker

Robbie Parker, with his wife, in shock after learning of his daughter's death.

Robbie Parker and his wife, in shock after learning of their daughter’s death.

One of the main points used by hoaxers to show that the Sandy Hook shooting was a hoax, is the image of Robbie Parker, father of Emilie Parker (aged 6, murdered during the shooting), smiling during a TV interview just days after the shooting. Out of all the hoaxer/conspiracy ideas, this was probably the toughest one for me to explain. However, after reading the opinion of a professional psychologist and several other explanatory articles, I have an explanation which even the most stubborn hoaxer should find credible.

Emilie Parker, 6, was killed in the shooting.

Emilie Parker, 6, was killed in the shooting.

The ‘suspicious’ TV interview took place two days after the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook. Robbie Parker had been photographed in the immediate aftermath of the shooting, looking shocked and in disbelief, an expected reaction when receiving such life-changing and devastating news. 48 hours later, Parker appeared before the world’s media, as one of the first parents to publicly speak about their child’s death. He looked smart and tidy, and spoke in a measured manner about his daughter Emilie. He even offered his condolences to the family of Adam Lanza. However before he began talking about her, he smiled briefly and even giggled momentarily. Hoaxers instantly point to this and say that he isn’t a father, he’s only a crisis actor, but psychological fact and common sense, once again, proves them wrong.

Robbie Parker moments before his TV interview.

Robbie Parker moments before his interview.

Some hoaxers highlight Parker’s neat and tidy appearance, they say that if he had spent the last two days grieving, he wouldn’t look so well-kept. Well, Parker was speaking in front of national media about his daughter, on behalf of his family. With that responsibility, he wouldn’t turn up looking disheveled and unkempt.

Moving swiftly on, the main hoaxer argument is that a man whose daughter died two days earlier, shouldn’t be smiling under any circumstance. Well, firstly, it’s not as if Parker is laughing hysterically. It’s a nervous giggle if anything. Robbie Parker is a normal family man, he isn’t used to national media interviews, and in that nerve-racking situation, it’s understandable to let out some signs of your nerves. Human beings are very diverse creatures, some break down in tears when nervous, some show no emotions, others giggle and smile. It’s natural human behaviour!

The following explanation has been put together using the opinion of psychology professionals. After a traumatic event (e.g. the death of your child), you don’t just remain despondent and miserable for two solid days. Of course, there’s a lot of sadness involved, but naturally you try and cheer yourself and relatives up. Recalling happy memories you have of your children would be relevant to this idea. This is exactly why Robbie Parker would have been smiling. Aside from his nervousness, he was remembering all the happy memories he had of Emilie (for his interview). Whilst he was thinking about those memories, a little smile is natural, happy that he had a few great years with her whilst she was alive. Not to mention the fact that his emotions would’ve been weak after two days of grieving, so he’d have been prone to over-showing of emotion (humor for instance).

Robbie and Emilie Parker

Robbie and Emilie Parker

Parker’s smile can be attributed to his fond memories of his daughter and his nervous giggle was probably due to his nervousness and weak emotions (after two days of grieving). A final point that a hoaxer tried to put forward was the fact that Parker referred to Emilie in the present tense (“is”) during his interview, instead of “was”. This is inane, after Emilie’s recent death, it would’ve been difficult for him to acknowledge that she was no longer alive. So for him to refer to her as if she’s still alive is reasonable.

Finally, if the Parker interview had been part of a hoax, then surely it would’ve been scripted like the rest of the shooting. If Parker (the actor) had laughed during the filming of the interview, then surely it would’ve been eradicated, like a movie outtake. Otherwise, the people orchestrating the hoax would’ve worried about being found out.

6) Was Sandy Hook a real, functioning school?

There have been a number of suggestions by hoaxers that there is no evidence that Sandy Hook was actually a functioning school, since 2010 that is. This, in my opinion is the worst-researched of all the hoaxers’ claims, and therefore the easiest for me to debunk. There are two places on the Internet where this claim is proved to be false; the Sandy Hook school website; and the Twitter account of Dawn Hochsprung (the late principal).

The courtyard of Sandy Hook school, pictured in late-2012.

The courtyard of Sandy Hook school, pictured in late-2012.

Starting with the Sandy Hook website, it is plainly obvious that this is a website of an active institution.  Sandy Hook school is still functioning to this day (although in a new building) and so is the website. The staff list has been updated, and news from the school pours in every week or so. Furthermore, there are two online scrapbooks (one for this academic year and one for last year). There are numerous photos of the school in action, with students’ musical productions, Veteran’s Day celebrations, and more. The links fro these scrapbooks are shown below, and the photo here is a picture taken from the scrapbook for this academic year.

The photo that Dawn Hochsprung tweeted, of a fire drill at Sandy Hook.

The photo that Dawn Hochsprung tweeted, of a fire drill at Sandy Hook.

The other place on the Internet which quashes this hoaxer theory, is the Twitter account of the Sandy Hook principal, Dawn Hochsprung, who died during the shooting as she tried to apprehend the gunman. She reportedly adored her job and the school, and this is evident from the enthusiasm she showed by tweeting photos of the school in action, right up until the eve of the shooting. These photos included a fire drill at Sandy Hook in October 2012, and a photo of their Winter concert rehearsal (taken just two days before the shooting).  Several other photos are shown on her Twitter page, and the link to it is also shown below. The dates on these photos show that Sandy Hook school was very much open as usual, right up until the morning of December 14th. This idea about the school being closed since 2010 is nonsense, and it is yet more desperation from the hoaxers.

https://twitter.com/DHochsprung (Dawn Hochsprung’s Twitter page)

http://newtown.sandyhook.schooldesk.net/AboutUs/Scrapbook20112012/tabid/15581/Default.aspx (Scrapbook 2011-12)

http://newtown.sandyhook.schooldesk.net/AboutUs/Scrapbook20122013/tabid/18959/Default.aspx (Scrapbook 2012-13)

7) Next Time…

In the second and final installment of this debunking page, I will tackle the following conspiracy points:

  • Are the ‘victims’ still alive?
  • Was the deceased Sandy Hook principal at the Boston Bombing?
  • Is Adam Lanza still alive, and was he a real person?
  • Why were there ‘no tears’ in the aftermath of the tragedy?
  • Online memorial pages created before tragedy?
  • Wouldn’t frantic kids be difficult targets to hit?
  • Why is the entire Sandy Hook school being demolished?

That installment will be released in four days time, on Tuesday 18th June. Hopefully, that would give people a chance to read this first section before the second one is released.

But I’d like to invite all people, hoaxers and believers, to leave comments on this page and I’d be happy to discuss any of the points brought up on this page. Please respect everyone’s views!

There’ll also be a poll at the end of the next section of this page, inviting people to vote on what they think happened at Sandy Hook in December last year, six months ago today.

shvictimsR.I.P to the 26 victims.

TO BE CONTINUED…

 

 

PS- I’m sorry but I have had to disable comments on this page, as that section was being regularly abused by people who were not here for a discussion, rather they came to read 1-2 sentences of my blog, and then chuck hateful insults in my direction. I apologise to anyone who genuinely wished to have a proper discussion, I’m afraid that some of the conspiracy “hoaxers” ruined it for everyone.