A report has revealed that Adam Lanza, 20, who shot and killed 26 people at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut on December 12, 2012, had a history of autism, anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder, but for years it was not treated.
Even though Lanza became more withdrawn socially due to his problems, the school system guided his mother to "accommodate and appease" him, said the State of Connecticut report.
AdvertisementThe Office of the Child Advocate said the family missed opportunities to give more appropriate treatment to Lanza. He was diagnosed with anxiety in 2006, but his parents never got treatment after 2008. The problem prevented him from attending school and his last years of his life were spent in virtual isolation.
"Both AL's mother and his educational team shared a goal of managing and accommodating, rather than securing treatment for, AL's disabilities, and likely this approach was fuelled by a lack of critical information and guidance," the report said.
The report also said, "There is no way to adequately explain why AL was obsessed with mass shootings and how or why he came to act on this obsession."
Lanza's mother did not give him the proper prescribed medication and instead complained about possible side effects, the report claimed. She even did not follow experts' advice to provide extensive special education support and specialist consultations to her son, the report said.
Lanza's failing mental health problems and his preoccupation with violence and access to deadly weapons, "proved a recipe for mass murder", said the report.
The report questions the fact whether a family that was not white or as rich as the Lanzas would have been given the same freedom to manage treatment for their troubled child.
"Is the community more reluctant to intervene and more likely to provide deference to the parental judgment and decision-making of white, affluent parents than those caregivers who are poor or minority?" the report said.
However, mental health experts said this is not always true.