Newtown gunman’s father meets with official
STAMFORD, Connecticut (AP) — The father of the gunman in the Newtown school shooting has agreed to help an investigatory commission obtain his son’s school and medical records, the commission’s chairman said Friday.
Members of the Sandy Hook Advisory Commission hope Adam Lanza’s records will help shed light on the young man’s motivations and personal challenges leading up to the December 2012 massacre of 20 first-graders and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Adam Lanza’s father, Peter Lanza, met for about an hour Thursday with commission chairman and Hamden Mayor Scott Jackson. Jackson said he provided Lanza with sample release forms, drafted by the commission’s attorney, that request Adam Lanza’s medical and educational records.
Jackson said he also provided Lanza with some topics commission members hope to learn more about, such as a clarification of Adam Lanza’s interactions with mental health professionals and whether any information contained in school documents should have indicated any issues.
“I want this to be fact-based and really cut and dry, not subject to interpretation of words or memories, which is why documents are important,” Jackson said.
Some commission members have complained about the lack of original documents in the release of approximately 7,000 pages of information released by the Connecticut State Police from their investigation into the massacre. Instead, there were summaries of interviews with mental health professionals written by the police.
The commission, created by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, is reviewing public safety policy in the wake of the mass shooting, making recommendations on gun violence prevention, school security improvements and mental health policy reforms.
Jackson said he and Lanza did not discuss the Sandy Hook incident or Adam Lanza during their meeting. Instead, he said they talked about the process of obtaining the documents.
Jackson described Peter Lanza as “professional, friendly and earnest in his desire to be helpful.” He said the father was surprised the commission did not already have access to the records. The commission does not have subpoena powers, needed to compel someone to release records.
It’s unclear how long it might take for the commission to obtain the documents. Jackson said he expects the parties with the records will likely run the request by their attorneys for review. He said he was also uncertain whether the documents would ultimately be made available to the public.