Sandy Hook report mentions games, but finds no motive for massacre

Report detailing investigation reveals mentally unstable shooter played all types of games ranging from Metal Gear Solid to Super Mario Brothers.

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[UPDATE] The report also mentions a video game called "School Shooting."

A past report pegged the Sandy Hook shooter as a "deranged gamer," but did his interest in games play any part in the massacre? An official report released today by Connecticut state attorney Stephen Sedensky concluded that it may have, but there is no conclusive evidence to prove it.

Image credit: Don Emmert for Getty

"Many people have asked why the shooter did what he did on December 14, 2012. Or, in the vernacular of the criminal justice system, 'Did he have a motive for what he did?'" Sedensky said. "This investigation, with the substantial information available, does not establish a conclusive motive."

While the investigation was unable to confirm or even substantially suggest a motive for why the shooter violently killed 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012, the report does go into detail regarding the mental health issues he suffered from.

"What we do know is that the shooter had significant mental health issues that, while not affecting the criminality of the shooter's mental state for the crimes or his criminal responsibility for them, did affect his ability to live a normal life and to interact with others, even those to whom he should have been close," Sedensky said. "Whether this contributed in any way is unknown. The shooter did not recognize or help himself deal with those issues. He had a familiarity with and access to firearms and ammunition and an obsession with mass murders, in particular the Columbine shootings.

Numerous games were found in the shooter's gaming area in the basement of his residence in Newtown, Conn. These include, but are not limited to, Left 4 Dead, Half-Life, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Doom, Call of Duty, and Battlefield.

The shooter's second-floor bedroom windows were taped over with black trash bags, as were the windows in his computer room. In this room, investigators found a computer hard drive that appeared to be intentionally damaged. Forensic experts have been unable to recover any of the information from this hard drive.

In addition, the shooter enjoyed music game Dance Dance Revolution and various videos of him playing the game were found on his computer. The report also calls out role-playing game Phantasy Star Online as one of his favorites, along with Nintendo games like Paper Mario, Luigi's Mansion, and Pikmin.

"He played video games often, both solo at home and online. They could be described as both violent and non-violent," the report states. "One person described the shooter as spending the majority of his time playing non-violent video games all day, with his favorite at one point being Super Mario Brothers.”

The report also reveals that the shooter regularly spent time with his father until he turned 18. They played video games together, went hiking, and on two occasions, went to a firing range. His relationship with his father deteriorated at the end of 2010, the report says, though no specifics were provided.

The Sandy Hook report also sheds light on some of the shooter's potentially irregular behavior leading up to the shooting itself.

"The shooter was particular about the food that he ate and its arrangement on a plate in relation to other foods on the plate," the report says. "Certain types of dishware could not be used for particular foods. The mother would shop for him and cook to the shooter’s specifications, though sometimes he would cook for himself."

No one was allowed in the shooter's room, the report says, not even to clean. He also disliked birthdays, Christmas, and holidays--he would not allow his mother to put up a Christmas tree.

"The mother explained it by saying that shooter had no emotions or feelings," the report says. "The mother also got rid of a cat because the shooter did not want it in the house."

Prior to heading to Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, the shooter used a .22 caliber Savage Mark II rifle to shoot and kill his mother while she was in her bed at their home in Newtown, Conn.

The investigation is officially closed now that this report has been issued, though if reliable information related to the case is introduced, it may be reopened. However, Sedensky said this is unlikely to happen.

The Sandy Hook shooting case may be closed, so to speak, but efforts in Washington are continuing. In January, President Obama directed the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to conduct further studies on the relationship between virtual violence and real-world violence. Law-makers have also introduced various bills in Congress following the Sandy Hook shooting, though none have been signed into law just yet.

Discussion

288 comments
tightwad34
tightwad34

To all you conspiracy nuts, I really hope you don't believe everything you hear or read. Talking about how the government set it up is preposterous. Bottom line is little kids got killed and if you think the government was behind it is beyond me. Makes me think about the blindess that was the whole 911 conspiracy theories. I know the government wants control and apparently they are doing a good job of it when you guys spew the sort of bullshit that come out of your mouths. I don't spew shit, I just think before I make conclusions. It's not hard to think that there are complete nut jobs out there that have no rationalization regardless of what you read or see on the internet and whatnot.

Hurvl
Hurvl

"it may have, but there is no conclusive evidence to prove it" If people with influence have anything inside their heads, they'll emphasize that last part. No conclusive evidence! 

With mentally unstable person it can be hard to find motives, because their minds and motivations aren't like the average person's, but I'm no expert on mentally unstable murderers.

Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

The shooter was a complete tool. He should have just killed himself. Trying to understand why he would kill innocent young children is impossible.

isshiah
isshiah

His gaming habits sound about average.  

I have a mental illness, i play games, i'm interested in history and psychology and I have peculiar idiosyncrasies, just like he and everyone else does. However,  I have no desire to kill people. Not all mental illnesses are of the same severity. 

jZangetsu21
jZangetsu21

Yeah it's called parents not giving a crap about their kid and not noticing there might be some mental instability or drugs.

Stop blaming games you ignorant pricks.

megaanto
megaanto

sandy hook was a false flag event. check up the evidence on the internet. it was a drill made to look like a massacre so they can try and get people to give up their guns. so this article is bollox

LS-Chaos
LS-Chaos

This is just my opinion, but I think post like this only indulge in what these horrible people hope to achieve by commitiing such horrible acts, they want to leave their shit stains on society and thus bequeath their legacy in human history. Articles and Shows that dive into their lives only solidify this for others out there who praise them or look to leave their own marks, we shouldn't remember these people, they should be treated like the trash they are.

Just my opinion though. :/

bouchart
bouchart

No motive?  Perhaps anti-depressives had something to do with it.

MrTakeda
MrTakeda

You can't just blame it on video games, you can't say if I play on Left 4 Dead and Battlefield I will decide to purchase a gun and then go shooting children, there are some things in life that just seem wrong. This guy was crazy and couldn't see what was wrong with what he was doing! millions of people play games and out of all those millions the odd nutcase kills 20 children and people question if video games can mentally harm people!

BelaidKL
BelaidKL

Of cooooouuuurssee it does........ 

BarkingSpider81
BarkingSpider81

I've played video games my whole life, and I've never had the urge to kill innocent people. It's the person, not the guns or video games. That's like saying, "The shooter was seen picking his nose a week earlier, so that must mean that almost everyone who picks his nose must be a killer."

2tonjunk
2tonjunk

Blame Bush. It works for Obama.

Grenadeh
Grenadeh

I'm honestly not sure which thing is more depressing: The fact that the people commenting actually believe this complete bullshit story that anyone who can think for themselves knows was complete bullshit and a media fabrication from day one, or the fact that no one else has addressed that.

Grenadeh
Grenadeh

This article, why does this exist? Many have asked the shooter? What shooter? When was a shooter ever caught and why was it not televised? Oh right because this never actually happened, it was a false flag event.

Chr0noid
Chr0noid

"He would not allow his mother to put up a Christmas tree."

This is a red flag if ever I've seen one.  If you're a mother living with your son and your son is wearing bigger "King of the Castle" pants than you, then it's time to stop being a stupid enabler and grow a proverbial pair. 

plm3d_basic
plm3d_basic

Motives?  The man was obviously disturbed.  Trying to determine the motive of this guy is like going to the asylum and trying to understand the mind of these nutjobs.  The guy was crazy and that doesn't mix well with firearms and first person shooters.  It also doesn't help that the media usually promote these stories and make these people infamous.  There's a reason why the killer chose a gun free zone and a school full of helpless children.  None of these killers would ever go into a police station and start shooting up the place. 

Dumachum
Dumachum

"This investigation, with the substantial information available, does not establish a conclusive motive."

They must be doing an amazing job because from what I have seen is most information, evidence, and accounts of the "incident" have been classified, "lost", or outright destroyed. They only thing anyone knows about what happened is what the "official government investigators" have told us.

noandno
noandno

Cat Mario makes me want to kill!!!!!!!!!!

spartanx169x
spartanx169x

This should have given the mother the first clue- "The shooter's second-floor bedroom windows were taped over with black trash bags, as were the windows in his computer room". This should have given the mother the second clue- "No one was allowed in the shooter's room, the report says, not even to clean".  It is obvious the Mother was not being a parent.  I could have never lived like that in my parents home. And my children  WILL NOT live like that in my home.

surferosh
surferosh

ohh for lord's sake.... with all due respect to the victims and their families, i guess it is high time that the government officials, politicians and the community in general realised that it is not games that make a person go and kill someone.. there has to be something WRONG with that person in the first place to make him/her act that way.. 

i am sick and tired of games and gamers being made scapegoats for no reason !

Triton
Triton

Shame he didn't have parent(s) that maybe paid attention to his mental state. Instead of blaming video games maybe lets look at lack of parental guidance in the life. But wait, that's not going to be fun.

Rayzakk
Rayzakk

So not wanting a cat in the house makes you bad?

Dannystaples14
Dannystaples14

You know if a politician ever mentioned that games could cause people to go on shooting sprees in a press release I would NEVER EVER vote for them in any way shape or form.

Most politicians are out of touch with reality as it is but my god some of those idiots that were backing this shit were just mentally retarded.

Tao_and_Zen
Tao_and_Zen

"shooter had significant mental health issues... did affect his ability to live a normal life and to interact with others... Whether this contributed in any way is unknown."

 Unknown? Really? WTF?

tightwad34
tightwad34

@Megavideogamer I won't understand why, but my guess is some people are just not right in the head no matter what they are exposed to.

UltraredM
UltraredM

@megaanto Right, and JFK was murdered by Castro and Elvis is still alive. Idiot.

meatz666
meatz666

@megaanto There's even an interview that a kid says it was a "drill"

neroist
neroist

@MrTakedaThat is not true. He knew that killing people was bad and choose to do it. Mentally ill or not, he choose to hurt people. His schizophrenia did not stop him from knowing right from wrong. He wouldn't have committed the steps that he took if he didn't know right from wrong. Yes there are people in this world who you can call evil.

West123
West123

@BarkingSpider81 no gun no kill...he could try  CoD knifing but it wouldnt be easy in real life...but games dont create mass murders he was broken inside...why? i dont care we will never be able to stop natural born killers just have to stop giving them tools  

megaanto
megaanto

@Grenadeh adam lanza was the shooters name..... he doesnt even exist! no records no nothing

neroist
neroist

@plm3d_basic Schizophrenia and video games, are lesser variables that added to equation and its very tragic outcome. The vast majority of schizophrenics are not nut jobs out to hurt people. There are people who just favor hurting others. It's rare for a schizophrenics to kill someone out of altered reality. It is the caliber of the person who chooses to do these evils.

Grenadeh
Grenadeh

@Dumachum Thank you for having common sense and pointing out Sandy Hook is bullshit, if not downright completely false and orchestrated by the government.

Gudzhis
Gudzhis

@Rayzakk IN his moms house. And if you read it carefully, he get his mother to get rid of that cat.

tightwad34
tightwad34

@sdoxas I'm more than okay with nobody having a gun, but that's an impossible dream.

megaanto
megaanto

@UltraredM dont be a handicap and do your research before opening that hole in your face

canuckbiker
canuckbiker

For someone that pretends to be a psychologist you can't seem to tell the difference between schizophrenia and an antisocial personality disorder. Maybe you should actual try to learn about mental disorders before diagnosing them, and telling people how someone thinks and acts.

neroist
neroist

@West123 Stop giving them tools you say? If not guns someone can make a bomb or use a car to ram a crowd of people. Heck look up all the mass school stabbing in China alone. Let alone the rest of the world.

BarkingSpider81
BarkingSpider81

@West123 I understand where you're coming from on the banning of guns, but I don't really agree with it. Why take guns away from responsible people if a few criminals get their hands on them and ruin it for everyone? The way I see it, criminals will get their hands on a gun regardless of what the law says. I'm not bashing your opinion, but there must be a middle ground people can agree on.

plm3d_basic
plm3d_basic

@neroist  

The point is you don't give or allow access of firearms to a schizophrenic and let them play violent games.  The guy was obviously still "smart" enough to not attack an NRA gun show, a military base, or a police station.  They never do.

tightwad34
tightwad34

@megaanto Please don't believe everything you read, especially on the internet.

megaanto
megaanto

Connecticut state attorney Stephen Sedensky didnt do his homework. oh well, lets just blame the deranged gamers

tightwad34
tightwad34

@neroist I totally agree and see where you are coming from, but I always say would you rather go up against a bullet or a knife? Or even a speeding car? I'll take anything except a speeding bullet you can't see coming.

plm3d_basic
plm3d_basic

@neroist  

False, they hear voices or believe in things that are abnormal.  Most wind up institutionalized or homeless. 

neroist
neroist

@plm3d_basic False. Most schizophrenics know right from wrong. You would see much more violence in the world, if they did not know right from wrong. They would all be mandated to be institutionalized.