Alone in a windowless basement, Adam Lanza, 20, spent hours each day playing violent video games while surrounded by dozens of military and weapon posters, before claiming infamy last week as the mass murder who fatally shot 20 elementary school students and seven adults in Newtown, Conn.
According to a person close to the family, Lanza would spend most of his time in the basement of his mother's spacious $1.6 million home in Newtown, engrossed in video games, in particular "Call of Duty," a war-game in which users role-play in various military conflicts from the present to World War II using machine guns, high-powered assault rifles and other weapons to slay their enemies.
In an interview with The Sun
newspaper of Britain, plumber Peter Wlasuk, who had previously worked in the house, recalled how "strange" the situation appeared to him.
"It was a beautiful house, but he lived in the basement. I always thought that was strange . . . They had one poster of every piece of military equipment the U.S. ever made . . . The kids could tell you about guns they had never seen from the 40s, 50s, and 60s . . . The kids who play these games know all about them. I'm not blaming the games for what happened. But they see a picture of a historical gun and say 'I've used that on Call Of Duty'," said Wlasuk.
After Lanza's older brother Ryan moved out of the house, "Adam then moved down there," said Wlasuk.
A former friend of Lanza's at Newtown High School, Alan Diaz, 20, told Fox News
that the Lanza he knew was socially ill at ease, but not a monster.
"He was a wicked smart kid . . . When I first met him, he wouldn't even look at you when you tried to talk to him. Over the year I knew him, he became used to me and my other friends, he eventually could have full conversations with us," recalled Diaz.
"A big part of me wishes I never dropped contact with him after he left high school, felt like I could have done something," added Diaz.
In addition to having unspecified mental and emotional problems, Lanza also suffered from Asperger’s syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism not normally associated with violence.
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