Some residents of Newtown, Conn., where 20 first-graders and six adults were gunned down at an elementary school in December 2012, want the shooter's family home demolished and replaced by a park, according to a survey.
The survey by the Newtown-Sandy Hook Community Foundation of about 1,600 residents found that the trauma of the tragedy remained a costly and complex condition to resolve for survivors, hundreds of first responders and the families of those killed by Adam Lanza.
The foundation distributed about $7.7 million in donations to the most-affected families last year, but still has $4.5 million left to provide to the town of about 28,000 people for years to come. The most pressing needs, the survey respondents said, were financial help for counseling, more after-school activities for children and general cash support.
But an unspecified number of survey-takers also filled out an "other" box and called for tearing down the nearly 3,200-square-foot Lanza home that sits on a two-acre lot. Adam Lanza, 20, killed his mother in that home at the start of the deadly rampage, which ended when he took his own life.
The four-bedroom home owned by her was passed onto her ex-husband, Peter Lanza, but remains part of an ongoing probate case. The family’s other son, Ryan Lanza, is also a part of the proceedings. Probate attorney Samuel Starks declined comment to the Los Angeles Times, and the Lanzas couldn't be reached for comment.
The foundation's executive director, Jennifer Barahona, told the Associated Press that trying to acquire the house is not under consideration.
"There really is nothing we can do," Barahona told the Associated Press. "The estate is in probate and it's likely to be there for years to come. I also imagine there would be lawsuits against the estate at some point."
The yellow house has remained vacant since the shootings, the Hartford Courant reported. The paper also said, citing court records, that the house has been appraised at $360,000, though it had a $402,232 mortgage outstanding.
The foundation said it would distribute about $200,000 in the coming months based on results of the survey, with most of the funds covering mental health services. The foundation is set to last for at least 14 more years, when most of the slain children would have turned 21.
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