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Newtown community mourns victims at evening vigil

People grieve outside the vigil at the Saint Rose of Lima church in Newtown, Connecticut Photo: Shannon Stapleton / Reuters

Hundreds of people gathered last night at a night time vigil to remember the people shot dead yesterday in one of the worst shootings America has seen.

Mourners gather inside the St. Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Church Credit: REUTERS/POOL New

The St Rose of Lima church in Newtown, Connecticut was filled to capacity, with hundreds more outside, praying and holding candles for the victims and their families.

Dannel Malloy, Governor of Connecticut speaks to mourners gathererd inside the St. Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Churc Credit: POOL New / Reuters

The gunman shot dead 18 children aged between five and 10 and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School before killing himself.

People grieve outside the vigil at the Saint Rose of Lima church in Newtown, Connecticut Credit: Shannon Stapleton / Reuters

Two other children shot at the scene died in hospital later.

Connecticut governor Dan Malloy gave an official statement to the press on behalf of the state, saying that "evil visited this community today".

People stand outside a vigil at the Saint Rose of Lima church in Newtown, Connecticut Credit: REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Many of the victims were, he said, "beautiful, beautiful children, who had simply come to school to learn".

People stand outside a vigil at the Saint Rose of Lima church in Newtown, Connecticut Credit: Shannon Stapleton / Reuters

"Their day ended a very different way than any of us could possibly have imagined. Quite frankly, as we stand here today, still can't imagine what transpired there."

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