(NEWTOWN, Conn.) — The body of Adam Lanza, who carried out the Newtown, Conn., school massacre, has been claimed but the whereabouts of the corpse remains unknown.
The body was claimed by Lanza’s father, Peter Lanza, according to a family spokesperson.
Adam Lanza, 20, killed himself after he shot his mother and then slaughtered 20 first graders and six school staffers at the Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14 in one of the worst school shootings in American history.
The funeral home wants to remain anonymous and geneticists at the University of Connecticut have agreed to a request from the state medical examiner to study his DNA. But like many of the mass murderers before Adam Lanza, what happens to his body will likely be unknown.
James Fox, a professor of criminology at Northeastern University and a mass shooting expert said in these types of cases “the grave is not marked because the family is afraid the grave will be defaced.”
“When there is a funeral for the perpetrator it is private,” Fox said. “Press is not kept apprised of when it is or where it is for the same reason.”
Fox said it’s often also because the “families don’t want the attention.”
“Families are often blamed,” Fox said. “If they didn’t have a role in creating the dysfunction, people feel they should have seen something and intervened. It’s not fair to blame them. They are not to blame, but it’s the truth.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Sara Weber, CNN
Shannon Gupta, CNN
Jackie Wattles, CNN