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Newtown Officials Request Halt To Gifts Received After School Shooting

A couple stand in silence at a memorial for those killed in the school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. (credit: Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

A couple stand in silence at a memorial for those killed in the school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. (credit: Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

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Tragedy In Newtown

NEWTOWN, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Officials in Newtown, Conn., are asking people to stop sending gifts to the grief-stricken community following the deadly school shooting, saying they’re deeply grateful but can’t handle the donation deluge.

The town’s first selectman, police chief and mayor made the request Wednesday through an editor at The Newtown Bee newspaper.

They said since a gunman killed 20 first-graders and six educators on Dec. 14, gifts including artwork, school supplies and blankets have arrived from around the world.

They said the small community’s ability to process, store and distribute the goods was quickly overwhelmed.

The officials are asking people to temporarily stop sending gifts and instead distribute them locally in memory of the victims. They said once they process the “warehouses full of items,” they’ll detail the best ways to help.

(TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)