Submitted by a reader. My comments follow.
Columbine : 101 witnesses can't be wrong
According to the final report of the investigation, only two people--Eric Harris, 18, and Dylan Klebold, 17--planned and executed the mass shooting at Columbine High School outside Littleton, Colorado, on April 20, 1999, leaving 15 dead and 23 wounded. But at least 101 eye- and ear- witnesses remembered it differently:
1) Chris Wisher, sophomore (1261)
He turned and saw two guys carrying shotguns, and wearing black trench coats. A 3rd guy wearing a white T-shirt and jeans was seen throwing bombs onto the roof.
2) Jake Apodaca, sophomore (653)
He was at the soccer field, heard firecrackers. He turned and saw two guys carrying shotguns, wearing black trench coats and black T-shirts. A 3rd guy wearing a white T-shirt and jeans was seen throwing bombs onto the roof.
3) Jonathan Cole, freshman (749)
He noticed two tall guys in black trench coats. He then saw a third male, wearing a white T-shirt and blue jeans. This person looked over to the other two suspect, and yelled "GO!! GO!!".
4) William Arapkiles, freshman (660)
He states that he was at the soccer field, and heard firecrackers. He turned and saw 3 people near the West entrance. Two were wearing black trench coats, and carrying guns. The third was wearing a white T-shirt, and no visible gun. The person in the white T-shirt was pacing back and forth about 5' away from the two gunmen.
5) Channel 7 News at 12pm(noon) on 4-20 (EP 21-244)
"Reporter said that numerous witnesses he spoke to who were not named said they saw 3 gunmen."
6) Lindsay Elmore, junior
(332)"I believe there were 3 gunmen."
(340) "...there was so much movement that Elmore thought there was more than two people."
7) ACSO Nelson (8810)
"... a list of 3 names that the 12 witnesses ID'd from a yearbook were turned over to ACSO investigators to forward."
8) Jason Baer, sophomore (1759)
Hid in greenroom off science hall "I heard more than two people yelling to each other saying 'over here' and stuff."
9) Anthony Sammauro, freshman (5071)
"Tony stated that two suspects came in the front door and one came in the side door."
10) Erik Sunde, freshman (4576)
Saw two gunmen downstairs near cafeteria, runs upstairs and sees another person in trenchcoat in front of library doors.
11) Jon Curtis, staff (2286)
Describes 3 attackers.
12) Richard Olejniczak, father of students Alicia and Sarah (5070)
"Richard then asked this Investigator what information had been obtained reference any other participants. Richard stated that while he was at Lea Wood Elementary School, waiting for information about his two daughters, he talked with two girls who came from the school. The girls said they had seen two guys in the cafeteria, wearing all black. There were also two guys who entered the main door from the parking lot. One was in black, the other in white. The girls said they all had guns.
13) Adam Campbell, senior (732)
Walked out of school at 11:20am(immediately before shooting) on 4-20 and saw Harris in the parking lot with 2 or 3 other guys, wearing a white T-shirt and a backward baseball cap.
14) Matt Katzenmeier, sophomore (5745)
Saw 4 subjects carrying bags in, according to Darlene Mesch.
15) Alicia Maes, sophomore (22755)
Saw 4 people with trenchcoats and guns, according to Rachel Nelson.
16) Natalie Baker, freshman (2583)
Told her mother there were 2 other shooters besides Harris and Klebold.
17) Jennifer Tindall, sophomore (1226)
Sees 2 suspects, neither of which is Harris and Klebold.
18) Ryan Ezzie, sophomore (2967)
Saw 4 people outside with hats on backwards. On 20612, he says he "...saw at least 4 parties dressed in black standing calmly when others were running."(by the school library)
19) Jordan Grimm, freshman (22432)
According to Jordan's aunt, he saw Harris and Klebold and 2 others together ouside school just before the incident began.
20) John Spahlinger (1176)
Clement Park maintenance worker, "a majority of the students Spahlinger helped informed him there had been a trench coat mafia gang shooting over at the high school and that there were 4 shooters involved."
21) Thornton/NorthglennPD SWAT Team (EP 9-34)
At 11:35pm on 4-20(12 hours later) the team enters CHS for another search. "We were advised that 2 suspects(shooters) might still be in the school."
22) Littleton PO Mike Eyman (8670)
Advised that "there were possibly 4 suspects in the school."
23) Nathan Dykeman, senior (trenchcoat mafia associate)
"...anyway yes there were 2 more people in the school with handguns but they decided to bail.... eric and dylan went threw with it and the other 2 did not...
"Daphne Baca had listed 4 names of possible suspects. Those names included Eric Harris, Dylan Klebold, Chris Morris, and Robert Perry."
25) Trista Fogerty, freshman (23144)
"Trista said she believes, as do most other students, that there were more than 4 people involved in shooting."
26) J. Adams (7422)
Construction worker near CHS; he refers to a black BMW and a small tan car drive down his cul-de-sac, followed five minutes later by the sound of bombs. A co-worker says the BMW was filled with 4 teenagers, the tan car which followed it had 2 people in it. (7430)
27) Gary Talocco, teacher (8876)
He says that the school roof repairman saw 3 people exit vehicle with Harris and Klebold. Tan vehicle followed them into the lot.
28) Dick Strange (1194)
"It was at approximately 11:45am that Strange first observed 4 to 5 individuals, all dressed in black trench coats, standing alongside Columbine High School in the vicinity of the gymnasium."
29) Patrick Vassar, freshman (4691)
Sees 4-5 individuals at 11:15am dressed in black walk away from the school, all wearing trench coats, except one, who was wearing cami pants.
30) Seth Biggi, junior (2475)
Was told by Courtney Shakowski she saw 4 to 5 tenchoat mafia members enter cafeteria with a big, black duffel bag.
31) Devon Adams, sophomore (10614)
Names 3 (Redacted) names as being directly involved in the Columbine shooting--they are not Harris and Klebold.
32) Boulder PD SWAT Timeline (8245)
2130 hours: "2 suspects believed dead inside, 1 arrest, 1-2 other supects/associates."
33) Julie Thomas, passerby eyewitness (ACSO 808)
That on 042099 at about 0755 hours, Julie turned onto Polk St. from Pierce St. and saw a small brownish/golden truck parked on the south side of Polk St. 5 male teens around it. At least three of them are wearing black trench coats.
34) Pat McDuffee, trenchcoat mafia associate (10786)
A member of the trenchcoat mafia names 5 people in the attack group. Says another 5 helped plan the attack and helped provide guns and bombs.
35) Melissa Chavez (9023)
Met Harris and Klebold and 4 other boys at the mall. They showed her a map of where they would bomb the school.
36) Tim Kastle, senior (3416)
Tells police of 5 suspects.
37) Pam Wood (8902)
Got call at work in Pennys at South West Plaza from students trapped in school. One saw 6 trenchcoats and that all were shooting handguns.
38) Amy Terry, sophomore (2207)
Was told by friend Elisha Encinias that she was in the commons when trench coaters with masks on came in shooting. Running upstairs, she sees 4 people in trenchcoats coming in through the glass doors at the west end of the main hallway.
39) Bryan Frye, sophomore (806)
While crawling past the admin office(where he had just heard gunshots), he saw 5 or 6 persons all dressed in black.
40) LFD Capt. Mike Gorman (EP 1-335)
"Capt. Gorman told me the only information was that there were 5 to 6 shooters from the Trench Coat Mafia."
41) JCSO Kevin Walker (EP 1-223)
"Dep. Walker related the communications center advised there were approximately 6 gunmen, dressed in black."
42) JCSO Vincent DiManna (EP 1-363)
At 11:35am, JeffCo. Lt. Manwaring "advised him there were as many as 7 gunmen inside the cafeteria and commons area."
43) CBSNews.com, 4-19-2001
"They(the cops) believed that they really had 6 to 8 armed individuals inside there."
44) Adam Campbell, senior (732)
Says fellow student Jessica Cave says she saw 10 shooters at the school(Jessica herself was not interviewed).
What did the ear witnesses hear? Numerous students heard gunshots/explosions in different parts of the school simultaneously. Which of course probably meant more than two shooters, as Harris and Klebold were officially together almost the entire time. To wit:
45) Sara Houy, sophomore (380)
Heard bombs in cafeteria below, while shooters were inside library, exploding bombs.
46) Josh Lapp, sophomore (480)
Heard gunfire in other parts of the school while attack on library is going on.
47) Brandi Wiseman, sophomore (4751)
Caught in one of the rooms off the kitchen, hears gunshots, bombs and screaming coming from cafeteria and library.
48) Holly Pinkham, sophomore (1620)
Says friend Don Goin had his shoe shot off while in middle hall, while gunshots were going off in cafeteria.
49) Matt Katzenmeier, sophomore (3424)
Heard shots and explosions inside the school at the same time there are 2 suspects outside.
50) Alex Babiniec, freshman (1954)
"He thought the explosions were coming from the level he was on and from downstairs at the same time."
51) Drew Lagerborg, junior (1999)
Ran west down south hallway, there was a gunman at end of that hallway. Ran to north hallway, he heard a shooter down that hallway as well.
52) Josh Brinkley, sophomore (2528)
Heard shots downstairs, then different shots upstairs(from two guns).
53) Jay Gallantine, staff (3086)
Sees gunman by library then runs downstairs where he hears more gunshots "all this time hearing shots all around me and above me."
54) Lindsay Wyant, sophomore (4799)
Heard shots in cafeteria and library at same time.
55) Evan Todd, sophomore (8826)
Heard bombs in other parts of the building while Harris and Klebold were in library.
56 and 57) Diwata Perez and Jessica Holliday, seniors (9923)
Heard gunshots elsewhere while shooters were in library.
Among the best evidence are witnesses who actually identified other participants by name.
58) Crystal Archuleta, junior (EP1-197)
"...she did see one person throw a pipe bomb. .....She told me at the time she thought it was Robert Perry."
59) Seth Dubois, freshman (EP21-125)
"...Seth told Katherine(Carlston) that Robert Perry was seen shooting a girl in the back while leaving the library."
60) Wade Allen Frank, senior (EP1-91)
"Mr. Frank told me that he thought origonally one of the individuals(shooting) was someone by the name of Robert..." "He stated that the person was tall, approximately 6'3" and kind of ackward(sic) and gangly."
61) Bryan Frye, sophomore (EP25-69)
"He stated that the person he had previously believed this shooter to be was Robert Perry. .....In a previous interview, after receiving his yearbook, he had told his father that he believed the shooter to be Robert Perry. He also stated that the gunman had bad acne."
62) Courtney Haulman, freshman (EP25-91)
"There was three guys. The guy I remember most was the main guy. He's over 6' tall and has long curly dark-colored hair. He was wearing a trench coat. His name is Robert Perry."
63) Lacey Hohn, freshman (EP1-186)
"...can you identify or descibe who was shooting? ....Ms. Hohn said that she does not believe it was Harris or Klebold. Ms. Hohn believes it was an individual named Robert."
64) Bijen Monty, junior (EP1-110)
"I asked her if she saw the source of the shooting. She told me she saw who she thought, at the time, was Robert Perry with a gun hanging around his neck. She said she never actually saw him shoot the weapon.
"She asked me if I had any information in regards to Robert Perry. I informed her I did not."
65) Tessa Nelson, freshman (EP1-113)
"I asked her if she saw the source of the shots. She said she saw a male, who she thought was Robert Perry, wearing boots, dark jeans with dark hair, walking down the stairs outside the cafeteria. She said the male suspect pulled a gun and started shooting."
66) Katelyn Sue Place, freshman (EP21-285)
Kate said, "It was (Redacted). I'm almost positive of it. I remember looking him dead in the eye. He was in my debate class..... . ...Dylan kind of looked like Robert, but Dylan doesn't have the long face. Robert's teeth are messed up and he was smiling and I saw his teeth then. Kate said that she has since seen pictures of Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris, and she said, "It's not one of them."(Referring to the person she saw shooting out on the outside commons.)
"She remembers him shooting Ann Marie(Hochalter). .... Robert was just randomly shooting. ...Robert was still shooting. ....Kate said that Robert shot Ann Marie before he smiled at Kate. ....She looked and saw Jason(Autenrieth) trying to help Ann Marie, dragging her away from Robert, to the side."
67) Lacey Smith, junior (4470)
"On the diagram she depicts (Redacted) as walking in through the doors, past where she was sitting, and going in about as far as they north end of the school store. It was at that time she heard the windows breaking and then realized she was hearing shots.
"....she did not have any trouble indentifying PERRY when he walked past her. I asked SMITH how sure she was that the person she saw and spoke with was (Redacted). I asked, "90 percent sure? 50 percent sure?" Her response was "100 percent sure." I then showed SMITH a photo lineup which included a picture of Dylan KLEBOLD, and asked her if the person who walked past her was in the lineup. She stated he was NOT in the lineup. .....As (Redacted) passed her and was near the commons area of the cafeteria, she then explained that (Redacted) pulled a weapon out from under his trench coat and started firing into the cafeteria.
68) Brenton Hooker, junior (16397)
"....he turned around and observed an individual he thought was ROBERT PERRY(ex-student of Columbine High School) standing outside the door just to the north of the main entrance shooting a pistol in his direction...." ....HOOKER described the individual he thought was PERRY as 6'8" - 6'11" in height, very skinny, tight black pants, black trench coat..."
69) Tiffany Lien, freshman (968)
"Lien stated she believed gunman number one was (Redacted).... ...Lien stated that she was approximately twenty to twenty-five feet away from gunman number one and looked at him face to face for approximately 25 seconds, frozen in her tracks." Tall male had long black trench coat, black jeans, dark brown hair. His hair was kind of long and had curls. He was skinny and his shoulders kind of hunched over. ...She also stated that the gunman had bad acne.
70) Kristen Long, senior (20245)
"Long said suspect definitely had dark hair and a large nose, thought it might be (Redacted)."
71) Rusty Shyler, junior (5464)
"The individual was very tall. ...Shyler saw his face partially and thought based upon his dress and size that it may have been (Redacted). He was a hundred percent sure it was (Redacted). He described (Redacted) as being 6'6" to 6'7" tall and having lots of zits."
72) Chris Thierren, sophomore (1207)
Saw a tall shooter with acne, large nose, shoulder-length hair. "He stated that the picture he saw was of (Redacted) and he was 'pretty sure' he was the shooter he saw that morning at CHS."
73) Erin Walton, sophomore (4139)
"Erin Walton said she knew one of the shooters, and that he not one of (the) two Eric and Dylan. ...he was a senior named (Redacted). and he was very tall, had bad acne scars on his cheeks.... "
74) Chris Wisher, sophomore (9832)
"....he recognized one of the shooters--the other shooter was the kid wearing black that was arrested and placed in cuffs and put inside a black police car. He said that he is 100% positive that he was the male that shot at him."
"Thought he recognized Chris Morris as being one of the shooters.... ...on the west side of the cafeteria."(EP6-265)
75) Ashley Egelund, freshman (22671)
"Ashley was in north corridor when she observed (Redacted) and Eric Harris coming around the corner from the library.... She said Chris Morris was armed with a handgun while Harris was armed with a shotgun.(5248 ) ....both started shooting at Ashley.... Ashley did not know (Redacted) at first but she saw his picture in the yearbook and is positive it was (Redacted).
76) Leiha Murphy, sophomore (3828)
In the cafeteria, notices commotion outside north-west door. "I saw a guy I recognized as (Redacted). He was running... (Joe)Stair had his blond hair down. It's past his shoulders. He's about 6', tall, skinny, he was wearing a long black trench coat.... I saw nothing in his hands. He was observed a short distance from whatever was going on at the door. My thought was that (Redacted) was involved if there was a fight."
Stair named in the cafeteria map(3830). Leiha also immediately picked him out of a photo lineup.
"I ask Leiha if she was certain that this individual was (Redacted). Leiha said "Oh yeah, I'm certain.... I saw his face full on. I remember seeing his face completely....(she said he stood in place for about 15 seconds)....I remember him graduating last year." She remembers him wearing 'makeup on his face and hand' and that because of that, he stood out from other students." " (3836)
Also, at least four ear- witnesses heard the suspects refer to one of their number as "Joe."(Encinas, 2943, Herivel, 1927, McKenna, 3525, and Salazar, EP21-224)
77) Cara Sander, sophomore (EP25-203)
Describes gunman as pudgy, overweight, very full face, thick bushy eyebrows. IDs him as (Redacted), who is heavy-set with a round face, short dark hair and dark eyebrows. A copy of the CHS yearbook page with Brian Sargent's photo is included in her interview. [John Ungerland(1701) says Brian Sargent has a round chubby face and is a big guy with bushy eyebrows. He saw him that morning at school; Sargent was wearing a short sleeve white button-up shirt-a polo type.]
78) Jason Brehm, sophomore (719)
One of the shooters had a very round face, shorter than 5'11". Not Harris or Klebold.
79) Mindy Pollock, freshman (10009)
Sees one gunman outside west entrance, holding a gun on the fence. ...Dressed in a "white dress-type shirt", short brown hair, with a "little bit of a gut". "POLLOCK stated she recognized the lower, #1 gunman as (Redacted)."(1095)
80) David Eagle, sophomore (1878)
"The guy with the gun had black hair looked like it was spiked shaved on the sides.(sic) It was also blond on top. 5'9", about 18 years old.
"He has since seen pictures of Harris and Klebold on television. ...David said that the person he saw did not look like the people he's seen on television."
81) John Vandemark, sophomore (2216)
In the science hall, sees older shooter with dark hair, spiky with blond tips.
82) Erin Walton, sophomore (2243)
In th science hall, sees suspect with short blond hair-"like he was going bald"-older, in his 30s.
83) Jen Smull, sophomore (2182)
In science hall, sees Klebold and an older suspect, 25-30, blond with short, spiky, buzz-cut hair.
84) Nathan Anema, freshman (2359)
"....Anema identified (Redacted) as possibly being the person he saw throw a pipe bomb during the shooting at Columbine High School on 4-20-99. ...Anema stated that he initially thought the person that he saw throwing the pipe bomb was (Redacted)."
85) Katy Beer, freshman (6636)
".... when the incident began at Columbine High School, she initially tried to get out of the school by going toward the main doors on the east side of the school by the administrative offices, however, she said she saw a third shooter next to these offices and that this third shooter shot out windows at that location. ...Katy Beer told him this third shooter may have been (Redacted)."
86) Leanne Clark, freshman (1422)
"...Clark told her that she saw who did the shooting in the cafeteria, and that Clark identified (Redacted) as a gunman."
87) Frank DeAngelis, School Principle(8018)
"I also assisted the principle of Columbine, who was having hard time giving the pictures of possible suspects to the command post and was present when he looked at and identified one of the suspects he was named.(sic) The male suspect was in the custody of, I believe, Jefferson Co. Sheriff's investigators."
88) Amy Evans, senior (22205)
"....Amy Evans said there was a third shooter and it was (Redacted)."
89) Mark Hengel, junior (5901)
"Hengel identified Klebold and (Redacted) from the photograph in the attached 1A envelope.... Also attached is a 1A envelope is a diagram of Columbine High School indicating the diection of Hengel and the two individuals dressed in black."
Apparently the interviewing officer didn't like what he was hearing, and so the interviewer ends up telling the eyewitness what he saw:
"I then advised Mark Hengel that the skinny person he saw standing and shooting was Dylan Klebold and the person he saw standing over the duffel bag was Eric Harris."
90) AnneMarie Hochalter, junior, gunshot victim outside the cafeteria (18218)
"Advised that Harris/Klebold did not shoot her. .... Has ID on shooters."
91) Leigh Kamens, senior (1422)
While in the 'green room' off of the science hall, she identified (Redacted) as one of the gunmen.
92) Alicia Maes, sophomore (3614)
"Alicia stated that when she first observed the male in the black trench coat, she thought it was a person known to her as (Redacted)."
93) Mark Opfer, freshman (1064)
"At the time, Opfer believed the taller person in the black tenchcoat who with(sic) the shooter was (Redacted)....."
"CHS student Mark Opfer was interviewed on 4-27-99... In that interview Opfer stated that he believed (Redacted, wearing a trench coat) was standing next to a gunman and was involved in the shooting."(25625)
94) Josh Ortwein, senior (1939)
"...Josh Ortwein witnessed the shooting and he was telling everyone he saw (Redacted) shooting a gun."
95) Jessica Rusch, sophomore (2143)
"...she identified one of the gunmen at the Columbine High School as being an individual known as (Redacted)."
96) Valeen Schnurr, senior, gunshot victim in library (18969)
"Per Valeen's mother, Shari Schnurr, Valeen possibly identified her shooter as (Redacted)."
97) Jennifer Tindall, sophomore (1226)
"....insisted that neither suspect she saw was Eric Harris or Dylan Klebold. ...Tindall picked out (Redacted) photograph as possibly being the male in the black trench coat."
98) Adam Thompson, junior (21039)
"....he had seen a gunman shooting inside the school. Does not think it is the same as gunmen in the media."
99) Terry Lawson, junior (10020)
ID other than Harris and Klebold.
100) Monica Schuster junior (19470)
"Schuster saw gunman but did not believe it was Harris and Klebold."
101) Kacey Ruegsegger, junior, gunshot victim in library (128)
"Ruegsegger did not recognize the pictures of Harris and Klebold she has seen in the media as the gunmen in the library."
The historical context of Columbine seldom gets any mention in the mainstream media. State after state had legalized conceal carry laws for law abiding citizens. As each state passed those laws, crime plummeted.
The gun-grabbers were losing the PR war over the issue of gun control as it became clear that armed citizens are adeterrent to crime. The gun-grabbers
needed a public relations event so horrific that the emotional reaction to it would outweigh all possible logical arguments on the issue of gun control.
Colorado was on the verge of passing a conceal carry law. Then Columbina happened, and the national move towards allowing law abiding citisens to carry concealed weapons slammed to a complete halt.
Certainly there are many interests that oppose private citizens being able to stop crime. Organized crime tops that list, followed by many polioce officials who see their own authority
and pensions threatened by a public able to take care of themselves. Finally there are the pro-dictatorship forces in the US which see a disarmed and hyelpless population as crucial to their designs.
It is in this context that the very odd aspects of the Columbine shooting need to be examined. Looking back from a time when we know the government lied about weapons of mass destruction,
and with 84% of Americans no longer trusting the official story of 9-11, it is valid to ask if Columbine was a staged event to trick Americansinto surrendering their Second Amendment rights.