How news spread of the ‘Dark Knight Rises’ shooting at Colorado movie theater

An overnight shooting in Aurora, Colo., has left 12 people dead, and dozens more injured. Here’s how the news spread, including eyewitness reports from people who were at the theater to see Batman sequel “The Dark Knight Rises” and media who arrived to cover the shooting’s aftermath.

Related: Sports journalist Jessica Ghawi dies in Aurora shooting | Reddit covers the Colorado movie theater shooting | ABC News apologizes for speculation that linked theater shooter James Holmes to Tea Party | Details about Colorado shooter too important to tweet incrementally | ‘Dark Night’: Front pages mourn for victims of Colorado theater shooting

How to: 7 tips for covering the Colorado theater shooting | How to approach sources on Twitter when covering tragedies like the Colorado shooting | 6 ways journalists can cope when covering traumatic stories like the Colorado theater shooting


How news spread of the "Dark Knight Rises" shooting

A shooting in Aurora, Colorado has left 12 people dead and dozens injured. Investigators say the shooter has been apprehended. Here’s how the information evolved.

Storified by Julie Moos · Fri, Jul 20 2012 05:47:07

Who’s Going To See The Dark Knight RisesDomnick Bivins
In 5 hours…. A fire will rise… No jokes here, too damn excited #TDKRZach Eastman
PHOTOS: Fans line up for midnight showing of "The Dark Knight Rises" in #Colorado: http://dpo.st/Q8IIib by @DenverPhotosThe Denver Post
It’s going to be a good night! (@ Century Aurora 16 for The Dark Knight Rises w/ 6 others) http://4sq.com/LwxJY1Juliana
Batman!!Jaime Marshall
Police r swarmin century 16Chayyiel Jackson
I wish i could get a pic of all the cops i see two bodies get carried out #crazyworldChayyiel Jackson
There was a shooting at century 16 aurora about 30 minutes into the movie. Its crazy.Isaac J Ramos
Woww Someone Just Shot Up This Batman Movie. . I Literally Just Seen A Little Girl Get Carried Out With Bullet Wounds Smh The Nerve Of Ppl.Domnick Bivins
Shots fired in the theater. #batman #aurora #coloradoCaitlin
Have just evacuated our theater in Aurora. There was a shooting in our auditorium. I am safeZach Eastman
There are cops from denver, cenntenial, and aurora. Things are nuts right now.Isaac J Ramos
Never seen so many cop cars in my life. Its a parade of lightsIsaac J Ramos
Every county and city has a cop car at the theater.Isaac J Ramos
Apparently 2 were shot at the century aurora 16. There was shooting in our auditorium. Saw people being carried to Ambulance. Scary as shitZach Eastman
9NEWS VIEWERS: There is a mass shooting incident in Aurora. Until we have confirmed information from police we… http://fb.me/1zhTfDpxq9NEWS Denver
Movie theater just got shot up while we were watching Batman. I’m ok a little freaked out. Walking to Isaac’s house with a group of friends.Jaime Marshall
Different things are flying around but we know that shots were fired.Isaac J Ramos
@BlessedDisciple Did you take any pictures of the scene?Kevin Torres
En route to a shooting call, 14300 e alameda ave with @jbame. Uk further attSteven Eckelberry
@LustInLove Yes. It was my theater. I’m outside, one of my friends is still inside. No one knows what’s going on.Caitlin
Oh God, I don’t know what to do.Caitlin
Shooting at aurora movie theater #freakingout :/Juliana
Saw three different people who had been shot but hear there are a lot more.Jaime Marshall
Several numbers being thrown around. Have only heard rumors but i guess people have been shotZach Eastman
On scene at #TheaterShooting in Aurora. Tons of emg vehicles. http://pic.twitter.com/gu5TEXOABrandon Rittiman
Everybody please pray for my friend Alex.Caitlin
I know I saw one man with blood running down his hands being carried into a cop carZach Eastman
Swedish hospital confirms Mass Casualty incident… 3 critical patients already there or on the way.. expect more. #theatershooting9NEWS Denver
@9NEWS a little shaken up at the moment. all i can remember is hearing noises and seeing smoke in our auditorium.Zach Eastman
Update: Local media say 10 people killed in shooting at Dark Knight Rises film premiere in Aurora, Colorado – @Reuters via @SkyNewsBreaking News
Home safe now. Walked home. Thought the best thing to do was to get out of there, trying to put everything together.Isaac J Ramos
They’re putting us in a bus to a nearby high school now. #aurora #batman #shootingCaitlin
Shooting in aurora movies people shot13shantyltoledo
@BlessedDisciple This is NPR News – would like to interview you about what happened at the theater. Pls DM your phone number.Morning Edition
CONFIRMED: minimum 10 dead, 39 transported – this just in from Aurora PD Chief Oates. #TheaterShooting http://fb.me/1nAsqWVIO9NEWS Denver
Talking to cops (@ Gateway High School) http://4sq.com/MLYfhdJuliana
Thank you for your prayers, everyone. Alex is still missing.Caitlin
Media presser for #Aurora movie theater shooting is at 3:15 a.m. East side of Dillard’s at Aurora mall. @denverpostKurtis Lee
@JuJubee__13 Juliana, if you are available for phone interview on Aurora, please DM phone number. Thanks, MalachyMalachy Browne
2 friends lost tonight, in tears right now.Adam Williams
APD Chief Dan Oates: The bodies of some of those killed are still in #Aurora movie theater. @denverpostKurtis Lee
.@aurorapd asking for witnesses to come forward in #theatershooting… if you were there or know someone who was, call APD 303-627-31009NEWS Denver
according to @AuroraPD suspect mentioned having explosives at his home. That apartment complex evacuated. #TheaterShooting9NEWS Denver
APD Chief Dan Oates: Suspect is still alive and in custody. Suspect’s apt. in #Aurora and evacuated for possible explosives. @denverpostKurtis Lee
Police: 14 people killed, 50 others hurt in early morning shooting at Aurora, Colorado, theater http://on.cnn.com/NCDwzTCNN Breaking News
Suspect’s #Aurora apt. is evacuated for possible explosives. No word on where the apartment is located. @denverpostKurtis Lee
A shirt on the scene of #Aurora movie theater shooting. @denverpost http://yfrog.com/h2ivpkdjKurtis Lee
Kivasti sopii tuo haulikkoesittelyn mainos Denver Postin tuoreeseen uutiseen sikäläisestä verilöylystä. #aurora http://pic.twitter.com/sh2jJODcMika Rahkonen
Hopefully my bro is alright praying for you bro. http://pic.twitter.com/GhOVuSZ6Adam Williams
i was in the front row i seen everything before i ran outChayyiel Jackson
The Aurora cinema shooting happened less than 20 miles from Columbine High School #aurora #theatershooting http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?hl=en&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-GB:official&channel=np&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&biw=1024&bih=638&um=1&ie=UTF-8&q=Columbine+High+School&fb=1&gl=uk&hq=Columbine+High+School&cid=0,0,13580174880769111735&sa=X&ei=YyUJULiVA8u6hAfB95yDCg&ved=0CKMBEPwSMAAOliviaFeld
BREAKING: 14 dead, 50 hurt in shooting in Aurora, Colorado during showing of Dark Knight @earlystartcnn covering #live on @cnn nowCNN
Been at the theater since 2:30 a.m. Working #batmanshooting. Aurora officer just told me he rushed 5 to hospital in patrol carRyan Parker
Officers are telling me they’ve never seen/experienced anything like this before.Ryan Parker
@JuJubee__13 If you have a moment, we would love to talk to you about what you saw tonight. Please call Chuck Murphy at 303-954-1829Chuck Murphy
Aurora police tell us they recovered a rifle and 2 other guns from suspect…an adult male in his early 20′sJohn Berman
Parking lot right outside theater. http://pic.twitter.com/rjCT8bT2Ryan Parker
14 dead, 50 wounded. Very surreal, still in a state of worry. Need to sleep nowZach Eastman
@ChayJ3 Thank you for taking the time to speak with us this morning.Morning Edition
Eyewitness cell phone video from Aurora, CO movie theatre shooting uploaded to YouTube: #theatershooting https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7sIiqq66rk&feature=player_embeddedJeevan Vittal
Those who were inside the #Aurora theater are being interviewed at Gateway H.S. A lot of folks visibly upset here. @denverpostKurtis Lee
Witness told me shooting started at time of shooting scene in new Batman, as if gun man/men knew the movie. It opened tonight.Ryan Parker
Louis was shot multipul times. Once in the neck. About 1 hr ago they finally let his mom to see him, HE IS ALIVE IS OK. #GODBLESSAMERICAAdam Williams
Visibly shaken officer told me he carried injured people out of theater. "speechless."Ryan Parker
if i was on the other side of the front row id prolly be shot #ThankGodChayyiel Jackson
READ -> RT @conor64: After Columbine, police in Colorado and elsewhere changed their protocol for mass casualty attacks http://bit.ly/NmAQaQMarc Ambinder
So lucky. http://instagr.am/p/NTIm00iZcy/Jaime Marshall
@JuJubee__13 hi Juliana, reporter in Dallas. Would like to talk to you this morning on our show if you have some time thx!Keaton Fox
never thought a Batman movie could turn into a massacreChayyiel Jackson
Children’s Hospital confirms 6 patients being treated from #theatershooting ages 6 – 319NEWS Denver
Here are a couple of people who were in the theatre in Aurora this morning: @IsaacJRamos, @iAmSalko, @JME817, @ZachEtake38.Ross A. Catrow
@JuJubee__13 Santina Leuci from ABC News in NYC. Can you call my cell 917-414-5963. we are looking to speak with someoneSantina Leuci
@JuJubee__13 hi Juliana can you pls follow me back so i can DM you? I’m praying for everyone in CO. thank you!Ali Ehrlich
@JuJubee__13 Hi Juliana…I’m w/ Global TV in Toronto. Would you be willing to talk to us over the phone about the shooting in Aurora?Mackay Taggart
For tweets on Aurora #theatershooting this a.m., follow @ryanparkerdp @denverpost @kurtisalee & @danielpettyMandy Jenkins
Louis was shot in the shoulder and arm, he put his arm up to protect his head. #ThankgodAdam Williams
@JuJubee__13 ABC News Radio interested in interview on shooting. Please follow so I can send direct msg. Thanks.Jeanette Torres
@mjenkins also local denver livestreams: @9news http://www.9news.com/news/article/278707/339/1-in-custody-14-dead-in-Aurora-theater-shooting … and @denverchannel http://media.thedenverchannel.com/livestreampagemerici
@mjenkins Thanks for those, my list also includes @9News and @AuroraPD https://twitter.com/#!/j_nb/aurora-shooting/Jessica Binsch
The Dark Knight Massacre seriously changed my life.Adam Williams
University Hospital reports there are 20 patients from #theatershooting with moderate – severe injuries. call 720 848 2626 about patients9NEWS Denver
I’m the last of the media on scene in the parking lot of theater. Just told to leave.Ryan Parker
As I’m leaving I’m seeing officers hug, pat each other on back.Ryan Parker
From Pool report: President Obama was notified of #Aurora shooting by Homeland Security Advisor J Brennan at 5:26 a.m. ET #theatershootinhRam Ramgopal
#GRAPHIC: Breakdown of the injured from #theatershooting at various Hospitals at #Aurora, Colorado (via @9news) http://yfrog.com/o0m3euamjPeter Leung
#theatershooting MT @jacelarson: View of SWAT team member … There are many similar people in area at residence. http://pic.twitter.com/axKbdKlH9NEWS Denver
Just overheard from officials: "Think this will be worse than Columbine?" #theatershootingRyan Parker
I took this inside the crime scene at Century 16 theater in Aurora right after mass shooting http://pic.twitter.com/boXbwFaISneaka’s Peek
Our hearts are with everyone involved in the Aurora, CO #theatershooting.American Red Cross
#theatershooting RT @7NewsMorning: PHOTO outside #Century16 right after mass shooting at #DarkKnight in Aurora http://pic.twitter.com/4HIWEq5xAmanda Kost, 7NEWS
I’m at the mass shooting scene at Century 16 theater in Aurora, this was taken at 1am @DenverChannel http://pic.twitter.com/8xRUymjbSneaka’s Peek
Heading back with rest of media. I was close to scene, very close. Saw clothes with blood laying on ground, popcorn spilled everywhere.Ryan Parker
Like 3 news stations wanna talk to me, Listen I just have friends that I love & would take a bullet for. thats all.Adam Williams
@dingos8myTARDIS I’m a producer with @CTVCanadaAM and we would like to talk to you. DM me please.Cathleen Finlay
RT @passantino: New photos: Friends and family mourn Aurora shooting victims (via @9news) http://twitpic.com/a9n19o http://twitpic.com/a9n19lGianluca Mezzofiore
If family members are looking for loved ones that were at the Century 16 Theaters we are asking them to go to Gateway H.S. 1300 S. Sable.Aurora Police Dept
@AWWillie Thanks for considering. We know it’s a lot to ask. Can’t imagine.Morning Edition
RT @AlBoeNEWS: Car actively being searched by bomb squad in Aurora theater parking lot http://twitpic.com/a9n1r4 via @SinofazeGod Bless U.S.A.
RT @natalietejeda: My friend Jessica Ghawi was killed in the #Aurora Shooting-she was an aspiring sportscaster-she will be missed http://yfrog.com/oc7ruuhjTia
RT @ibnlive: First Pics: Police officers took witness statements outside a movie theater in Aurora. #Theatershooting #batman #Denver http://pic.twitter.com/sHrVPLAdEshan karmaker
Batman Movie Opening Shooting in Aurora Slow Motionmikeagoura
@dingos8myTARDIS Hi I’m from SkyNews would you be able to do a phone interview on what happened?Adele Robinson
University Hospital confirms the youngest patient from #theatershooting is 3 months old9NEWS Denver
Suspect in Aurora, Colorado #theatershooting is in custody. Investigating threat of explosives at his home. http://on.wsj.com/O2p83tWall Street Journal
President Obama: ‘Michelle and I are shocked and saddened by the horrific and tragic shooting in Colorado’ – White House StatementBreaking News
Just saw many new police officers show up at the apartment scene. Here’s a bit of video. #theatershooting http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CTaJfZP44xQ&feature=youtube_gdata_playerJace Larson, 9NEWS
@dingos8myTARDIS I’m a reporter for Canada’s biggest newspaper. Can we talk about what happened? Thanks much. omoore[at]globeandmail[dot]caOliver Moore
@dingos8myTARDIS Catilin, glad you are ok. If you’re still awake, would u mind giving us a call at the station? (916) 454-4548.FOX40 News
Gun Shooting at Batman premiere in Aurora – Amatuar Footagec0starulz
#BREAKING Romney releases statement "Ann and I are deeply saddened…praying for families and loved one of the victims" #theatershootingCBSDenver
Twitter reporting RT @denverpost: We are still interested in talking to witnesses of Aurora #theatershooting. Call 303-954-1300…Jeff Jarvis
Anyone in the #aurora area that was at the theater and willing to give an interview please contact me. My thoughts are w/ all affectedJason J. Hatfield
.@denverpost curates tweets & videos re #theatershooting in Aurora. Via @jxpaton http://dpo.st/LwVe37Jeff Jarvis
Hate waking up to bad news #shooting#news#colorado#todayshow#sickpeople#movietheater#badnews#tvJessica Bevington
Live scenes of police entering the suspect’s apartment in Colorado. @JohnMillerCBS: The police are acting cautiously in case of trapsCBS This Morning
@jeffjarvis @denverpost @jxpaton Not working. Too many nasty tweets about the victims, too little news.Garance Franke-Ruta
As the sun comes up here’s another look at the scene. It feels much more active than this indicates #theatershooting http://pic.twitter.com/zeXCAwjeJace Larson, 9NEWS
@thegarance yes. Needs curation/editing. @denverpost @jxpatonJeff Jarvis
@dingos8myTARDIS call Fox 31 Denver at 3035667600 and talk to our desk about what happened as a witnessMakenzie O’Keefe
Suspect is adult male, in late 20s. When arrested, police recovered one rifle, one handgun, & gas mask. #theatershootingCBSDenver
Suspect is an Aurora resident, did not resist arrest. #theatershootingCBSDenver
Video shows chaos right after the #theatershooting (uploaded by YouTube user 13shantiltoledo) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7sIiqq66rk #AuroraLiz Heron
More people to follow from our @9News colleagues: @jacelarson, @jeremyjojola, @kyleclark, & @willripley. #theatershootingRob Edwards
Aurora Police Department tells CNN the death toll in the CO #theatershooting has dropped to 12Nick Valencia
RT @chucktodd: NBC’s Pete Williams has the Aurora suspect’s name: James Holmes, born 12/13/87Anthony De Rosa
Shooter’s only contact with police was a speeding ticket, @9NEWS reports.Anna Tarkov
NEW- A federal law enforcement official says 4 guns have been found. A shotgun is the additional gun #CNNNick Valencia
A law enforcement source tells CNN’s HLN that law enforcement officers have found “items of interest” in the suspect’s apartment #ColoradoCNNJanet
Witness says bullets were big&hot, had bullets fall on her while hiding behind seats.Many witnesses said they crawled out #theatershootingCBSDenver
@armanij01 Things was real last nite.. http://instagr.am/p/NTXxtrPY0k/Chayyiel Jackson
Awful. RT @bustedcoverage I’m devastated. Here’s confirmation of @JessicaRedfield’s death. Such a great person. http://bit.ly/NCua5RSarah Weinman
RT @GMA Suspect’s mother tells @ABC News "You have the right person… I need to call the police… I need to fly out to Colorado.”Neal Mann
Comprehensive timeline: Aurora Massacre : newsReddit, I’ve been compiling a timeline for a while. Here it is. If you have ANY media or news whatsoever, please add it. Don’t repost per…
Aurora Theater Shooting | Facebookundefined

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  • Anonymous

    Yes, gee, that’s too bad he ruined it for you.

  • Anonymous

    According to her twitter site, her friend Alex didn’t make it. 

  • Anonymous

     Advice to anyone involved in such situations, once you have seen for your own personal safety and the safety of those around you, start taking pics and video at the earliest opportunity, document everything.

  • http://www.facebook.com/slamming.guitars Jasmine Calderon

    WHAT HAPPENED TO ALEX

  • http://twitter.com/PressJunket4Me K.Kindred

    Wow. 

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  • http://profile.yahoo.com/GT2FI6QPR6F7W2W3Y25MC45DZM Anonymous

    Sad – Jessica, the first victim identified tweeted the first few in this string…

  • http://www.facebook.com/reverendjeffy Jeff Berg

    Ah, very interesting. I’m actually running a Radian6 monitor on the alleged shooter’s name right now so that we can take a look at how certain topics grow and fall off across the day. For example, alleged political affiliations, news about him being a former medical students, whatever.

  • http://twitter.com/Quest4Birds Matthew Hensley

    Does anyone know where the reports that 14 had died came from?

  • http://twitter.com/charlesapple Charles Apple

    Nicely done, Julie. Thanks much.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/flower-rose-tattoo-designs-girls-women spencergrant32

    A day I was looking forward to because of the movie release, gets up-ended by some numbnut looking for attention.

  • Monivette Cordeiro

    I think you should check out this Facebook page about the shooting. It’s filled with updates and comments about the shooting. http://www.facebook.com/AuroraTheaterShooting