Newtown shooting: 'British boy' among dead

Dylan Hockley
Image caption Dylan Hockley is among 20 child victims of Friday's shooting

A six-year-old boy who is believed to be British is among the 26 victims of a US school massacre.

Dylan Hockley was shot dead at Sandy Hook Elementary School, in Newtown, Connecticut, on Friday.

In an article in The Newton Bee newspaper published before the shootings, his mother, Nicole, said she and her British husband, Ian, moved to the US from England two years ago.

It is believed their older son, who was also a pupil, survived the attack.

Dylan is among 20 child victims of Friday's shooting - all aged either six or seven - whose names have been released by the US authorities.

Six adults also died.

In The Newton Bee article, American Ms Hockley says she lived in England for 18 years before moving to Newtown with her family and her husband, who works for IBM.

On the family's decision to settle in Newtown, Ms Hockley says: "This was the place, when we were driving around, where we felt happy and comfortable.

"The schools here have been amazing, and the people in my neighbourhood are incredible. Newtown is a wonderful place to live and we're looking forward to being here a long, long time."

Mike Wimbridge, a former neighbour of the Hockley family in Eastleigh, Hampshire, told the BBC he was "devastated" by the news of Dylan's death.

He said the family had rented out their British home two years ago and had just decided to make the move permanent by selling the house.

Mr Wimbridge said: "I think Ian was back this week to sign the papers for the sale, so they must have just decided it was the right thing for the family."

Heartbroken neighbours

Prof Roger Thornton, reader at St Nicolas Church in North Stoneham, Eastleigh, said a special prayer for Dylan and his family at a service on Sunday.

In his sermon he described Dylan as "innocent" and said he was "cruelly taken away".

Reverend Stephen Holmes, the rector, said: "We are horrified that this should happen to someone from our parish and we feel deep sympathy for the family.

"They are in our whole congregation's thoughts at this difficult time."

Another Eastleigh neighbour, Maria Sweet, 81, said her "heart was just broken" when she saw the news of Dylan's death on TV.

"I recognised Dylan's face straight away because of that lovely smile of his," she told the Telegraph.

"He was such a lovely little boy and very intelligent too. He enjoyed school."

'Meaningful action'

The gunman, named in media reports as Adam Lanza, killed his mother, Nancy, before driving to the school and opening fire.

Reports say the guns used in the attacks were registered to her.

The state's chief medical examiner said the gunman used a semi-automatic rifle as his main weapon, and all the victims appeared to have been shot several times, some of them at close range.

President Barack Obama, who is to visit Newtown on Sunday, has urged "meaningful action" against gun crime in the US.

Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy said he wanted stronger national limits.

He said Connecticut had an existing ban on assault weapons, but the lack of a similar law at federal level made it difficult to keep them out of the state.