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After day of agony, families in Colorado get tragic confirmation backposted on Sat, 21 Jul at 11:54
James Holmes, 24, was identified by two federal law enforcement officers as the man who opened fire during a screening of "The Dark Knight Rises" at an Aurora, Colorado, theater early Friday. At least 12 people were killed, Police Chief Dan Oates said.
(CNN) -- Grief counselors will be available Saturday to help the bereaved in the Colorado shooting, hours after authorities started the dreadful task of notifying relatives of the victims of the movie theater massacre.
"It took about 19 hours to hear from law enforcement, which was agonizing and I thought just outright cruel to all the victims' families," said Anita Busch, who said her cousin, Micayla Medek, was among those killed. "We had been desperately trying to find her."
Families of the deceased had not been notified until Friday night because an active investigation was under way at the crime scene in Aurora, police said.
Alex Sullivan's relatives were also among those who got the dreaded news.
"The Sullivan family lost a cherished member of their family," a representative for the family said in a statement. "Alex was smart, funny, and above all loved dearly by his friends and family. Today was his 27th birthday. They respectfully ask that the media allow them time to grieve privately."