Washington, DC, United States (4E) – President Barack Obama on Friday condemned the shooting in Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. that left 27 people killed in what he described as a “heinous crime.”
The president made the statement about the tragedy at 3:15 p.m. at the White House press room.
The emotional Obama said that the nation has endured too many of these tragedies in the past few years. Each time he hears about it, he does not address the people as their president, but as a parent, according to the president who was shedding tears as he spoke.
Obama has also expressed his condolences personally to Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy. White House spokesman Jay Carney said that incidents like this mean a lot to the president.
Carney said the president first knew about the matter at 10:30 a.m. while he was at the Oval Office.
Prior to making the statement, Obama issued a proclamation ordering U.S. flags to be lowered to half-staff until Tuesday as a symbol of honoring the victims at the school who were targets of “senseless acts of violence.”
The White House confirmed that Obama has spoken to Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director Robert Mueller and his agency is currently providing assistance to Connecticut’s state and local law enforcement as they look further into the incident.
The White House did not say whether the event would make gun control a priority agenda for the president, although it said that the policy issue would indeed be tackled.