SAN DIEGO -- The young gunman accused of killing at least a dozen people and wounding 38 at a midnight showing of the Batman film "The Dark Knight Rises'' in a Colorado movie theater early Friday went to high school in San Diego and is studying in Colorado, authorities said.
Arlene Holmes of San Diego told ABC News that her 24-year-old son, James Holmes, is the man accused in this massacre in Aurora, Colo., nine miles outside Denver. Holmes was taken into police custody in the theater's parking lot shortly after the gunfire broke out around 12:40 a.m., authorities said.
San Diego police Chief William Lansdowne told FOX 5 News that officers have gone to the family's home in Rancho Penasquitos to provide security at the family's request.
Shortly before 7:30 a.m., police escorted a man out of the home and whisking him away in an unmarked police sedan. There was no immediate word on where the man was headed, but he was carrying luggage and authorities later confirmed that he was the alleged gunman's father.,
Shortly before 8:30 a.m., police Lt. Andra Brown came out of the Holmes family home and distributed a written statement from the family. It read:
"Our hearts go out to those who were involved in this tragedy and to the families and friends of those involved. We ask that the media respect our privacy during this difficult time Our family is cooperating with authorities in both San Diego, California, and Aurora, Colorado. We are still trying to process this information and we appreciate that people will respect our privacy."
Brown said that police were at the house to preserve the peace, not to investigate the shootings in Colorado. She told reporters that James Holmes graduated from a San Diego-area high school and was continuing his studies at a school in Colorado. She did not identify either school, but a family friend showed FOX 5 a high school yearbook that indicated Holmes graduated from Westview High School in 2006.
Brown said that all members of the Holmes family except the father remained in the home.
Holmes allegedly wore what appeared to be a bullet-proof vest and riot- type mask as he opened fire in the Century Aurora 16 movie theater, with three weapons. Authorities said at least 12 people died and 38 were wounded.
The theater is about five miles from Holmes' Aurora apartment, which was being searched by police for explosives and more weapons. Holmes apparently acted alone, authorities said. The motive was unclear.