I had stated how this reminded me of ‘Final Destination’ in my in-depth post of this massacre. As I listen and read the stories all day, I am struck my a common denominator and my thoughts about this shooter. What makes no sense to me after hearing witnesses on FNC, is he was in a closed environment with an arsenal. He prepared intricately.
That is obvious as TMZ has reported:
James Holmes used 3 different kinds of guns during his assault on a Colorado movie theater … including a high power assault rifle.
The Aurora PD says Holmes was in possession of an AR-15, a Remington 870 shotgun and a 40 caliber glock handgun when he was arrested this morning.
Cops say they found another 40 caliber glock in the shooter’s car, located right outside the movie theater.
An AR-15 is a semi-automatic weapon … capable of firing off hundreds of rounds per minute.
Below is a video of someone demonstrating the firing power of the AR-15 — a civilian version of the M-16 assault rifle.
One witness said she had a gun to her head. Why then if he is hellbent on mass killing, did he not shoot her?
Jennifer Seger, who was inside theater 9, the movie theater in Aurora where a gunman opened fire during the premiere of “The Dark Night Rises,” describes the suspected shooter pointing a gun in her face.
He walked up and down the aisles. He went back & forth shooting. He could have feasibly wiped out everyone in that theater. As of this posting I am happy to report the 3-month-old victim was recently released from hospital. But I must ask WHY were there not more fatalities. Something to wonder upon. ~ JP
But this post is about the one victim that has haunted me since I heard about her. Jessica Redfield
Redfield’s chilling final entitled “Late Night Thoughts on the Eaton Center Shooting,” was a reflection on the shooting at Toronto’s Eaton Center in early June and its impact on her life. Redfield was present at the scene of that event, but wrote that an “odd feeling” led her to “go outside and unknowingly out of harm’s way” before the shooter opened fire.
Here is HER blog entry from June 5, 2012, 8:12 AM:
I can’t get this odd feeling out of my chest. This empty, almost sickening feeling won’t go away. I noticed this feeling when I was in the Eaton Center in Toronto just seconds before someone opened fire in the food court. An odd feeling which led me to go outside and unknowingly out of harm‘s way. It’s hard for me to wrap my mind around how a weird feeling saved me from being in the middle of a deadly shooting.
What started off as a trip to the mall to get sushi and shop, ended up as a day that has forever changed my life. I was on a mission to eat sushi that day, and when I’m on a mission, nothing will deter me. When I arrived at the Eaton Center mall, I walked down to the food court and spotted a sushi restaurant. Instead of walking in, sitting down and enjoying sushi, I changed my mind, which is very unlike me, and decided that a greasy burger and poutine would do the trick. I rushed through my dinner. I found out after seeing a map of the scene, that minutes later a man was standing in the same spot I just ate at and opened fire in the food court full of people. Had I had sushi, I would’ve been in the same place where one of the victims was found.
My receipt shows my purchase was made at 6:20 pm. After that purchase I said I felt funny. It wasn’t the kind of funny you feel after spending money you know you shouldn’t have spent. It was almost a panicky feeling that left my chest feeling like something was missing. A feeling that was overwhelming enough to lead me to head outside in the rain to get fresh air instead of continuing back into the food court to go shopping at SportChek. The gunshots rung out at 6:23. Had I not gone outside, I would’ve been in the midst of gunfire.
I walked around the outside of the mall. People started funneling out of every exit. When I got back to the front, I saw a police car, an ambulance, and a fire truck. I initially thought that maybe the street performer that was drumming there earlier had a heart attack or something. But more and more police officers, ambulances, and fire trucks started showing up. Something terrible has happened. I overheard a panicked guy say, “There was a shooting in the food court.” I thought that there was no way, I was just down there. I asked him what happened. He said “Some guy just opened fire. Shot about 8 shots. It sounded like balloons popping. The guy is still on the loose.” I’m not sure what made me stick around at this point instead of running as far away from the mall as possible. Shock? Curiosity? Human nature? Who knows.
Standing there in the midst of the chaos all around us, police started yelling to get back and make room. I saw a young shirtless boy, writhing on a stretcher, with his face and head covered by the EMS as they rushed him by us to get him into an ambulance. The moment was surprisingly calm. The EMTs helping the boy weren’t yelling orders and no one was screaming like a night time medical drama. It was as if it was one swift movement to get the boy out of the mall and into the ambulance. That’s when it really hit me. I felt nauseas. Who would go into a mall full of thousands of innocent people and open fire? Is this really the world we live in?
Police start yelling again “GET BACK NOW!” Another stretcher came rushing out of the mall. I saw a man on a stretcher, the blanket underneath him spotted with blood. Multiple gunshot holes in his chest, side, and neck were visible. It’s not like in the movies when you see someone shot and they’re bleeding continuously from the wound. There was no blood flowing from the wounds, I could only see the holes. Numerous gaping holes, as if his skin was putty and someone stuck their finger in it. Except these wounds were caused by bullets. Bullets shot out of hatred. His dark skin on his torso was tinted red with what I assume was his own blood. He was rushed into the ambulance and taken away.
More people joined the crowd at the scene and asked what happened. “There was a shooting in the food court,” kept being whispered through the crowd like a game of telephone. I was standing near a security guard when I heard him say over his walkie talkie, “One fatality.” At this point I was convinced I was going to throw up. I’m not an EMT or a police officer. I’m not trained to handle crime and murder. Gun crimes are fairly common where I grew up in Texas, but I never imagined I’d experience a violent crime first hand. I’m on vacation and wanted to eat and go shopping. Everyone else at the mall probably wanted the same thing. I doubt anyone left for the mall imagined they witness a shooting.
I was shown how fragile life was on Saturday. I saw the terror on bystanders’ faces. I saw the victims of a senseless crime. I saw lives change. I was reminded that we don’t know when or where our time on Earth will end. When or where we will breathe our last breath. For one man, it was in the middle of a busy food court on a Saturday evening.
I say all the time that every moment we have to live our life is a blessing. So often I have found myself taking it for granted. Every hug from a family member. Every laugh we share with friends. Even the times of solitude are all blessings. Every second of every day is a gift. After Saturday evening, I know I truly understand how blessed I am for each second I am given.
I feel like I am overreacting about what I experienced. But I can’t help but be thankful for whatever caused me to make the choices that I made that day. My mind keeps replaying what I saw over in my head. I hope the victims make a full recovery. I wish I could shake this odd feeling from my chest. The feeling that’s reminding me how blessed I am. The same feeling that made me leave the Eaton Center. The feeling that may have potentially saved my life.
@ Go in peace, angel. <3 — Jack (@iJackSparrow) And Jessica's Tweets shortly before the shooting: Tweeting under the handle @JessicaRedfield, Redfield’s final tweet was a response to a follower who criticized her for tweeting during the film:
* @ MOVIE DOESN’T START FOR 20 MINUTES
Earlier in the night, Redfield tweeted that she had to “coerce” a date into seeing the movie with her:
* Never thought I’d have to coerce a guy into seeing the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises with me.
Of course we’re seeing Dark Knight.Redheaded Texan spitfire, people should never argue with me.Maybe I should get in on those NHL talks…
The rest of Redfield’s Twitter stream shows she was a bright and funny young woman with an interest in a wide variety of sports and a journalists’ appreciation for grammar jokes who used the social network to chat with friends, talk sports and learn more about sportscasting as a profession:
* If a minor league player signs contract in the ECHL could he break that contract if an AHL team in a different system wants him?
Holy moly. Did I just spell favorite with a “u” in it? Who am I?
Redfield also wrote for Busted Coverage, a blog “dedicated to all things men: booze, ladies and sports.” Her was an early season prediction of the NHL’s Stanley Cup Playoffs:
* “Many people keep asking me what my NHL predictions are for this season. My go to answer is, “The team that wins 16 post season games.” You see, I don’t like pre-season rankings or predictions in any sport, especially hockey. Hockey is the fastest and most unpredictable sport out there. There have only been two teams to hoist Lord Stanley two years in a row in the past 20 years. The rankings fluctuate constantly and the unpredictability makes the sport even more exciting.”
Friends, colleagues and those who never met Redfield in person sent their emotion-laden condolences to Redfield via Twitter early Friday morning:
* Devastated. Lost a very close friend in the shooting last night. @ came to Denver to pursue sports career. I’m shaking — Peter Burns (@PeterBurnsRadio)
* Terribly sad to read the tweets of @ , a promising sports journalist who died in the Aurora shooting. — Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl)
* Words are useless. Guns more so. If you ever had any interaction with @ , you know the world is much worse off without her. — Jesse Spector (@jessespector)
I will not post much on the shooter, because the only thing that mystifies me is he didn’t kill himself in the end. That is how it normally ends.