Baton Rouge teen among wounded in theater shooting

Published: Jul. 20, 2012 at 2:33 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 26, 2012 at 10:58 AM CDT
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Bonnie Kate Pourciau
Bonnie Kate Pourciau
Elizabeth Sumrall
Elizabeth Sumrall

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A Baton Rouge teenager is among those shot in Friday morning's mass shooting inside a Colorado movie theater.

Family friends say Bonnie Kate Pourciau, 18, was shot in the knee and survived.  She underwent several hours of surgery Friday.   Family members say Pourciau's surgery went well and she was "in good spirits".

Pourciau was in Colorado on a girl's trip vacationing before starting college next month.

Elizabeth Sumrall, who is also from the Baton Rouge area, was also in the theater. Family members said she and Pourciau are friends. Sumrall was not injured in the shooting.

Sumrall posted a message on Facebook Thursday night before the shooting happened.

"Going to see The Dark Knight Rises in Colorado with Bonnie Kate Pourciau," it read.

A family friend said the girls first sat on the front row of the theater, but moved to the back of the theater just before the movie started.

Pourciau underwent surgery for her injuries. Her parents were en route to Colorado to be with her, a family friend said.

The victim's mother, Kathleen Pourciau, wrote on her Facebook wall about the incident just before 7 a.m.

"Bonnie Kate was shot last night in her leg in a theater in Aurora, Colorado," she wrote. "She is at the hospital now in Denver and will be going into surgery soon. Many people were killed. Please pray for her and the others who were hurt and their families."

The family of Pourciau released the following statement:

"We wish to thank our many family and friends as well as many others from the community for their expressions of support and concern for our daughter, as well as the many prayers that have been, and continue to be made on Bonnie Kate's behalf. Her injuries, while serious, are not life-threatening, and the early indicators from her surgery have been encouraging. We would appreciate, as much as possible, being given the time and space to deal with the trauma of what has happened and would ask that people please respect our need for privacy. As a Christian family we  are trusting the Lord to guide us through this difficult time. Our hearts and prayers also go out to all the families and communities that are affected by this tragedy."

Bonnie Kate is the oldest of seven children. A family friend is staying with the rest of the children in Baton Rouge while the parents are in Colorado with their daughter.

She is a member of South Baton Rouge Presbyterian Church.

"Bonnie Kate is a sweet Christian girl and member of our congregation," said Associate Pastor Andrew Voelkel. "We are thankful to God that her life was spared, and we are praying for her recovery. Furthermore, our hearts and prayers are with all those who were injured or who lost loved ones in this tragedy."

Authorities said James Holmes, a former medical student in a gas mask barged into a crowded theater in Aurora, CO during a midnight showing of the new Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises, on Friday.

He hurled a gas canister and then opened fire, killing 12 people and injuring at least 50 others in one of the deadliest mass shootings in recent U.S. history. Nine of the injured are reportedly in critical condition.

Holmes is in police custody.

Some movie theaters in the Baton Rouge area said they are taking added safety precautions to be on the safe side following the deadly shooting.

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