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Newtown Shootings: Funerals Continue; Biden To Lead Task Force

Posted: December 19, 2012

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The president is expected to confirm today that he has asked Vice President Biden to head up an administration-wide effort to find ways to curb gun violence.

Candles with the names of victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, at a makeshift memorial near the entrance to the grounds of Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Candles with the names of victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, at a makeshift memorial near the entrance to the grounds of Sandy Hook Elementary School. Brendan Smialowski

Some of today's headlines and news about the shootings at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., last Friday. Twenty children and six adults were killed by the gunman who attacked Sandy Hook Elementary:

-- Biden To Lead Task Force On Gun Violence: Echoing earlier reports, The Associated Press writes that President Obama is "launching an administration-wide effort to curb gun violence, underscoring the growing political consensus over tightening gun restrictions following the horrific massacre at a Connecticut elementary school. Obama is tasking Vice President Joe Biden, a longtime gun control advocate, with spearheading the effort. In remarks from the White House on Wednesday, Obama will outline a process for pursuing policy changes following the school shooting, though he is not expected to call for specific measures."

The National Rifle Association, as we reported Tuesday, says it "is prepared to offer meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again" and plans to hold a news conference on Friday.

-- Funerals Continue: Memorials are scheduled today, The New Haven Register says, for 7-year-old Daniel Barden, 6-year-old Caroline Previdi and 6-year-old Charlotte Bacon. Teacher Victoria Soto, 27, will also be remembered today.

-- "Geneticist Asked To Join Search For Clues." The Hartford Courant reports that "as detectives continue to comb through evidence and talk to people who witnessed Friday's mass murder at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the state's chief medical examiner is seeking clues in the gunman's biology. Dr. H. Wayne Carver has asked a geneticist at the University of Connecticut to join in his investigation of the killings. Carver is awaiting toxicology testing results for gunman Adam Lanza, 20, and information that may help answer the question of why Lanza gunned down 20 first-graders and six women at Sandy Hook."

Authorities say it appears Lanza also killed his mother, Nancy Lanza, before the school attack. Adam Lanza was found dead inside the school, from what authorities say was a self-inflicted gunshot.

-- Sandy Hook Students Still At Home: "The surviving children from Sandy Hook Elementary faced another day at home," Reuters writes, "as school authorities and parents made plans for an eventual return to a different location — the unused Chalk Hill School in nearby Monroe, where a sign across the street read, 'Welcome Sandy Hook Elementary!' "

-- On School Buses Tuesday, All Was Quiet: Other schools in Newtown reopened Tuesday. Driver Melissa Danka tells NPR that the students on her bus were quiet. "There was barely any talking. It was very quiet. Some kids .. you could see it ... they were just teary eyed. ... You could see that they were just very emotional."

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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