Sandy Hook Elementary School Parent: 'My Friend's Kids Are Dead'

UPDATED 12/14/2012 at 03:45 PM EST Originally published 12/14/2012 at 02:45 PM EST

Connecticut Shooting: One Parent Shares Her Experience with PEOPLE
Unidentified people embrace after the school shooting
Don Emmert/AFP/Getty
The mother of a child at Sandy Hook Elementary School shared her experience of the mass shooting with PEOPLE Friday afternoon.

When our reporter spoke with the woman – who went to the school Friday morning with a book for her child – she was crying and said, "I was hiding under a desk. It was terrifying … my friend's kids are dead."

The woman's children are currently safe at the local firehouse and she is waiting for police to release them. She adds that when the students were evacuated from the school, they were instructed to look away from the office of Principal Dawn Hochsprung, who was killed in the shooting, when they walked past.

A federal official tells PEOPLE that 27 people were killed in the school Friday morning, including 20 children.

According to the woman, the shooter, Adam Lanza, who was also confirmed dead at the scene "went into the office, started arguing, and he killed people in the office," before going into a classroom.

Another parent visiting the school at the time tells PEOPLE he "could hear shots in the hall and glass breaking." And an NPR interview with one of the school's teachers revealed that the school's PA system was on the whole time, amplifying the shots throughout the school.
Sandy Hook Elementary School Parent: 'My Friend's Kids Are Dead'| Connecticut School Shootings, Shootings, True Crime, Real People Stories

Children waiting outside the school after the shooting

Michelle McLoughlin / Reuters / Landov

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