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Cops: Sandy Hook school could be crime scene for months

Left: People visit a memorial outside of the

Left: People visit a memorial outside of the Sandy Hook School in Newtown, Conn. (Dec. 15, 2012) Right: Undated photo of Adam Lanza, who killed himself after killing more than two dozen others, including 20 school children. Credit: John Roca/NBC4 New York

Investigators recovered "significant evidence" at the home of Connecticut school shooter Adam Lanza Monday and authorities said he had no connection to the site of a massacre where 20 first-graders and six adults were killed.

Details of the evidence collected at the home Lanza shared with his mother, Nancy, were not released but officials said the two-story home and Sandy Hook Elementary School about five miles away will likely remain crime scenes for several months.

Lanza shot his mother to death inside the home Friday morning before getting into her car and heading to the school where he trained a semiautomatic rifle on two classes of first-graders, teachers, the principal and staff members.

"We are going to do everything it takes . . . to paint a clear picture as to exactly how and why this tragedy occurred," said Connecticut State Police spokesman Lt. J. Paul Vance.

Investigators are still interviewing witnesses, Vance said.

Not far away from where authorities sifted through evidence, the first of the 20 children shot to death were buried Monday and Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy talked about breaking protocol in the hours after the shooting to release the names of the dead to their relatives.

State police also said Monday that a second shooting victim survived the attack. The two survivors' names were not released.

Malloy choked up as he revealed that he pushed past initial hesitation by authorities to release the names to relatives who had waited anxiously into Friday night to hear their loved ones' fate.

"It was evident to me that there was a reluctance to tell parents and loved ones," Malloy said. "I made the decision that rather than relying on traditional investigative policies" in which identification and notifications are made, "to have that go on any longer was wrong."

He called for a moment of silence and for churches to ring bells Friday morning, exactly one week after the shooting.

Shooting victims Jack Pinto and Noah Pozner, both 6, were buried in separate services attended by family and friends of the little boys but also strangers touched by the events of the past four days.

Investigators said that despite what appeared to be a well-planned attack, it was still a mystery Monday why Lanza targeted the kindergarten-through-fourth-grade school. Earlier reports said his mother was a teacher at the school and it was where Lanza himself attended. Both reports were later proved false.

Lanza took classes at Western Connecticut State University when he was 16 and earned a B average, said Paul Steinmetz, spokesman for the school in Danbury. He said Monday that Lanza took his last class in the summer of 2009. Police had no record of any criminal activity involving Lanza.

All Newtown schools except Sandy Hook are scheduled to reopen Tuesday, a spokesman said. The district was making plans to send surviving Sandy Hook students to a former school building in a neighboring town, The Associated Press reported.

Vance said all of the victims at the school were shot with a Bushmaster AR-15 semiautomatic rifle and that "numerous" magazines were emptied at the scene. Lanza, a quiet young man described as developmentally disabled and who struggled socially, had hundreds of bullets that went unused, Vance said.

Lanza shot and killed himself as first responders closed in on him inside the school, officials said.

"There was a lot of ammo, a lot of clips," Vance said. "Certainly a lot of lives were potentially saved" by first responders approaching the school.

The Connecticut State Police have 250 troopers investigating the shootings, and Newtown Police Department detectives, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the FBI, the Connecticut forensic laboratory and municipal agencies are all assisting.

With Tania Lopez and Patrick Whittle--With AP

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