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NRA: ‘We Were Shocked, Saddened And Heartbroken’ By Newtown Massacre

Organization To Hold 'Major News Conference' Friday In Washington D.C. Area
National Rifle Association

Gun enthusiasts explore products displayed on the exhibition floor at the National Rifle Association of America’s annual meeting at the Kentucky Exposition Center May 16, 2008 in Louisville. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

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Tragedy In Newtown

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The National Rifle Association released its first statement Tuesday on last week’s elementary school massacre in Newtown, Conn., expressing its willingness to help make sure something like that never happens again.

The statement did not address the issues of gun rights, gun control, or the guns used by shooter Adam Lanza, 20, at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Friday.

Photos: The Victims Of The Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre

“The National Rifle Association of America is made up of four million moms and dads, sons and daughters – and we were shocked, saddened and heartbroken by the news of the horrific and senseless murders in Newtown,” the statement said. “Out of respect for the families, and as a matter of common decency, we have given time for mourning, prayer and a full investigation of the facts before commenting.

“The NRA is prepared to offer meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again,” the statement continued.

The NRA also announced plans to hold a “major news conference” this coming Friday in the Washington, D.C., area.

Demonstrators on Tuesday marched on NRA Headquarters, chanting, “Shame on the NRA!” Some argued that it is time to repeal the Second Amendment.

Meanwhile, President Barack Obama has announced his support of the reinstatement of the assault weapons ban that expired in 2004.

He also called for a ban on sales of high-capacity magazines, and wants to make sure there is a background check for every gun sold.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg and other officials have also called for stricter gun control in the wake of the massacre. Lanza used a Bushmaster AR 15 semiautomatic weapon to kill 20 children and six adults at the school, and also had two semi-automatic handguns — a Glock 10mm and a Sig Sauer 9mm.

But some gun rights supporters said the outcome of the incident would have been different if someone else in the school had also been armed.

Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) suggested on Fox News Sunday that if Sandy Hook Principal Dawn Hochsprung had a gun when she confronted the shooter, the outcome may have been different.

“So when she heard gunfire, she pulls it out and she didn’t have to lunge heroically with nothing in her hands,” Gohmert said. “But she takes him out, takes his head off before he can kill those precious kids.”

In the wake of the Connecticut massacre, not only are gun control advocates calling for stricter criminal background checks, but many — including New York Sen. Charles Schumer – say there must also be legislation that prevents mentally ill people from obtaining weapons.

Do you think the answer to curbing gun violence is less guns, or more? Leave your comments below…