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Thursday, December 5, 2013

SANDY HOOK 9-1-1 CALLS: WHY THE DISCREPANCIES?

After nearly a year later, for the first time the public is allowed to listen to a mere handful of calls that were allegedly made during the Sandy Hook shooting on 12/14/12.  The calls that have been deemed "safe for the public" to listen to, do not demonstrate the logical progression of a mass crime scene which includes an active shooter, multiple victims and which occurred in a confined space (school hallways).

I listened to the released tapes and I admit, at first review, they seemed legitimate.  However, that initial opinion changed upon reviewing the tapes several times.  I will go forth and say one thing first;  I do believe that SOME (if not all) of the dispatchers may have believed they had an active shooter situation.  The police response also appeared to be legitimate upon reviewing the 2 hour tape of the Newtown Police and Connecticut State Police responding to Sandy Hook on that day (assuming the audio I reviewed was in fact from 12/14/12).

That said, there are several issues that start to emerge on the limited tapes that were in fact provided to the media for public review.  Below are just some of those initial findings:

1.  The tapes released were heavily edited.  They do not follow the natural progression of the call event.  These were "cherry-picked" tapes and certainly not the entire 9-1-1 call center intake calls in their entirety.  The times of these calls are out of order;  some may be from the very onset, at least one is at least 8 minutes into the event and others can not be matched to known police radio broadcasts at all.

2.  With any mass casualty incident, there will be multiple calls.  What was released was basically one caller stating that there was a shooting, another stating that she had been shot, another stating that she was a teacher in the school, but mostly we have "Rick" the "Acting Head Custodian" in most of these calls.  DURING NONE OF THE CALLS, WAS A DESCRIPTION OF THE SHOOTER ASKED FOR OR OBTAINED....

3.  There should be no less than 20 calls... likely many more.  We hear just a half dozen or so.  This goes against what would normally happen at any type of shooting / large fire / bad car accident, etc.  Based on these tapes, we are expected to believe that an acting head-custodian, one teacher, one other school employee that was shot and two outside callers were the only ones who called 9-1-1.

4.  Focusing on a few of the calls specifically, let's take a look at the most obvious one, Rick, the acting head custodian.  In his calls, he is calm and collected.  He states that he is in a corridor, not near the front of the school.  He is able to state that the shooting is ACTIVE, and therefore, his position in the school is critical.  For those not aware of what an assault rifle or shotgun sounds like when discharged, please click on this link to get a better idea.

(LINK:  WHAT AN M4 ASSAULT RIFLE SOUNDS LIKE) // (LINK: WHAT A SHOTGUN SOUNDS LIKE)

Note:  The above links are video from indoor shooting ranges (random videos).  Indoor shooting ranges do have SOME soundproofing present to muffle the sound for shooter protection.  A school, lacks this soundproofing.  Therefore, we would expect that the gun blasts would be dramatically louder, particularly in the corridors / hallways.  We simply do not hear this type of sound.

Given the nature of his location, unless the Sandy Hook Elementary School was "SOUNDPROOF" throughout the building, his location would be one where the sounds of an assault rifle and shotgun blasting would be excruciatingly loud.  Not "pops" but deafening loud.  He repeats a few times that the shooting is still going on;  this indicates he is able to hear the shooting, yet, despite his location in a corridor that tends to echo sounds, we are unable to hear the deafening blasts of an assault rifle or shotgun.  Even a smaller caliber handgun would have been amplified in such a setting and would not be a simple "pop."

5.  Listing to the call of "Rick" again, one main question that comes to mind is why he is a key player during this event.  It could be because he is a custodian he could prove to be a vital link between responding officers who may need the layout of the school.  The only issue we have with that theory is that in the year 2012, all public places such as schools, libraries, hospitals, etc, all provide emergency services with DETAILED FLOOR PLANS of their facilities so that emergency responders know the layout in advance, drill on the layout of the schools/public buildings and have this information beforehand.  For this reason alone, it is not clear why the dispatcher would need to keep Rick on the line repeatedly, nor why this was the main call we were provided.

6.  Remaining with the Rick calls, towards the end of tape #6, it sounds like Rick is being approached by SWAT/ESU officers as he announced to them "Custodian! Custodian!" on the tapes.  A few things don't make sense in this scenario... First, even if he is the custodian, in an active shooter situation, all individuals encountered would be at the very least secured and escorted off scene.  It is not a likely scenario that responding officers took his "word" that he was an unarmed custodian if in fact this was an active shooter scenario.  Even MORE UNLIKELY, is that during this exchange, Rick states he is on with Newtown Police Dispatch, and then becomes a "middle man" between the Dispatchers and Police.  We hear Rick delivering messages back and forth between Dispatch and Officers including asking for State Police backup, etc.  From the sounds of the Newtown Police audio of the incident, it appears that they utilize a Digital Radio System.  It is unlikely that a town utilizing an expensive digital radio system does not have enough radios for each officer, particularly for those entering into the active shooting scene.  Let me rephrase:  IT IS IMPOSSIBLE for Newtown Police to have officers entering into an active shooting scene without adequate communications between officers and dispatchers.  The role of Rick in this scenario becomes a bit suspect.

7.  Still remaining with Rick, he states to the dispatchers that he was "just told that there were shadows outside the gym";  he was just told this by the gym teacher.  WE DO NOT HEAR the gym teacher state this to him.  It is unlikely in a corridor, that the sound of another teacher's voice would not be picked up on audio.

8.  The woman who called stating she was shot in the foot sounded extremely calm for just being shot non-critically.  The dispatcher also sounds equally non-concerned and merely offers her to "apply pressure" and graciously says "good bye."  In an active shooting scenario, these are more likely responses / pleads from a caller who was just shot:


  • " I WAS JUST SHOT!!!! PLEASE SEND SOMEONE NOW!!!!"
  • "OH MY GOD, PLEASE HURRY... I HAVE JUST BEEN SHOT!!!"
  • "WHERE ARE YOU???? THERE IS SOMEONE SHOOTING EVERYONE IN THE SCHOOL!!!!"
  • "CAN YOU SEND SOMEONE NOW??? THERE IS SOMEONE SHOOTING EVERYONE AND I WAS JUST SHOT!!! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!!!!"
Take a listen to another active shooting 9-1-1 call center and listen to the difference:  (LINK TO ACTIVE SHOOTER 9-1-1 CALLS)

9.  At one point during the calls, we clearly hear one of the female dispatchers (possibly Jen) state in the background "there is a rumor this may be fake."  There is clear audio of this here:  Sandy Hook: This may be a fake (9-1-1 operator)


10.  During this event, it is reported that at least 120-140 rounds of ammunition were fired off.  Yet in the tapes, at most, we hear possibly 6 total rounds fired.  Those rounds do not sound like assault weapon rounds or shotgun shells.  They barely resemble small handgun rounds.  It is not clear what those sounds are, but this part is clear;  we simply do NOT HEAR the number of rounds being reported fired in the 9-1-1 calls.

11.  Additionally, during Rick's conversation with Newtown Police on scene, the officer he is talking to and relaying information to the dispatcher states that there are "TWO DOWN".... indicating that this police tactical team made their way from the front of the school, to the custodian, down a corridor, and somehow missed 26 other victims?  It is possible they entered from a different location, however, if the shooter was in the front, that would be where the victims were.  So then given this logic, these officers entered via the front of the school, saw the "two victims" and kept moving throughout the school, with a total tally of "TWO" victims.  What about the other 26????

These tapes will undoubtedly be reviewed by thousands of people looking for the truth as to what happened at Sandy Hook on December 14, 2012.  It is our hopes that these tapes are legitimate and that if any lives were lost on that date, we send our deepest condolences to the families.  However, based on the shroud of secrecy that this event has had since it's inception, and based on inconsistencies throughout the past year, these tapes unfortunately, leave more unanswered questions than they do actual responses to questions that have been consistently raised.

We will follow up with this as the tapes are examined further.

2 Hour Police Response Audio:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ETkrxfYoQtc

IMPORTANT NOTES:

1. At 26 minutes post-incident, officer on scene DID request for an EMS unit IMMEDIATELY.  Newtown EMS units 982 and 983 were ready to respond and told to hold prior to this request.
2. By 28 minutes, Newtown Police hit out for mutual aid for ANY available EMS UNITS.
3. At 28 minutes Fire Departments were hit out for mutual aid.
4. At 29 minutes Newtown Police established a staging area for parents/students/faculty
5.  One victim was brought in by a police unit at around 25 minutes.
6. At 30 minutes, suspect vehicle plates called in:  872-YEO
7.  MULTIPLE ENCRYPTED MESSAGES BETWEEN 26 - 30 MINUTES.
8.  At 35 minutes, order was given to have all EMS units stage at Newtown Fire rather than Sandy Hook school.
9.  At 39 minutes, order given to have TRIAGE AREA set up at rear of Newtown Fire Department
10. At 41 minutes, police on scene requesting if responding EMS have a Mass Casualty Kit.  Answer: Negative.
11.  At 41:30, unit 405 reports transporting gunshot wound to foot;  conscious and alert.
12. At 44:45, order given for LAW ENFORCEMENT to stage units directly in front of school.  Not EMS.
13. At 47:45 it sounds as if EMS triage was changed to the front of Sandy Hook Elementary.
14.  At 48:30, unit 408 ordered to set up at Sandy Hook, just the truck, no trailer.
15. At 49:15, large group of people exiting Sandy Hook school via the front door.
16. At 52 minutes, although it is hard to hear, it sounds as if a request was made "just for paramedics."  This would indicate a call for "pronouncements" if in fact from this event.
17. At 52:30, Medic Unit inbound with UCON-ER Support requesting a hook-up point.
18.  At 53 minutes, dispatcher indicates there are victims in the closet in the kitchen.  (?)
19.  At 54 minutes, Unit 408 is unable to gain access to Sandy Hook;  driveway is cluttered.
20.  At 54:45, Fire indicates 4 students who left the school are to return to Sandy Hook Fire Dept.
21. At 55:40, Dispatch indicates a teacher and student are located in the kitchen again.
22. At 56:10, State PD indicate two individuals from Wayne, NJ detained;  state they were doing a documentary on "Bow Hunting."
23.  At 57:50, police request to keep roads clear for EMS to exit.
24.  At 58:50, SCENE IS DECLARED NOT ACTIVE.   6 Inbound EMS/BLS units (including AMR and 2 medic units).
25. *******At 58:50, Dispatch informs all units to continue in, AT REDUCED SPEED.******
26. At 59:30, order given to have medics enter school with AED's
27.  At 1hr 2minutes, order given to have 6 inbound EMS continue, ALL OTHER EMS to CANCEL.
****** CRITICAL NOTE:  After 60 minutes, the "Golden Hour" for shock/trauma is past, meaning chance for survival of any victim is greatly reduced;  it is not likely any victim would survive at this point. *******

28.