President Obama and Mitt Romney released separate statements on Friday saying they were “saddened” by the mass shooting at a Colorado movie theater early this morning, and pledged to bring those responsible to justice.

The White House announced Obama will talk about the shootings in "shortened remarks" at his first campaign stop in Fort Myers, Fla., on Friday morning, according to the White House. He is scheduled to speak around 11:20 a.m. Obama cancelled a later camapaign event planned for Florida.

Romney will address the shootings at his campaign stop in New Hampshire, according to his campaign. He is set to speak around 12:10 p.m.

In a statement, Obama expressed shock at the news.

“Michelle and I are shocked and saddened by the horrific and tragic shooting in Colorado,” he said. “Federal and local law enforcement are still responding, and my administration will do everything that we can to support the people of Aurora in this extraordinarily difficult time.”


Early reports estimate at least 12 dead and at least 50 hospitalized after a shooter opened fire at an Aurora, Colo., movie theater during the crowded premier of the new Batman movie, "The Dark Knight Rises."

“Ann and I are deeply saddened by the news of the senseless violence that took the lives of 15 people in Colorado and injured dozens more,” Romney said. “We are praying for the families and loved ones of the victims during this time of deep shock and immense grief. We expect that the person responsible for this terrible crime will be quickly brought to justice.”

Aurora Police Chief Dan Oates told reporters a suspect was apprehended in the movie theater parking lot and remains in custody. The suspect was reportedly heavily armed and wearing a bulletproof vest.

Obama, who spent the night in Florida, where he's on a two-day campaign swing, was informed of the shooting at 5:26 a.m. by Homeland Security Adviser John Brennan, according to a White House pool report.

The suspect is not suspected of links to any radical terrorist groups, according to reports.

“We are committed to bringing whoever was responsible to justice, ensuring the safety of our people and caring for those who have been wounded,” Obama said. “As we do when confronted by moments of darkness and challenge, we must now come together as one American family. All of us must have the people of Aurora in our thoughts and prayers as they confront the loss of family, friends and neighbors, and we must stand together with them in the challenging hours and days to come.”

Aurora is not far from Columbine, where a school shooting in 1999 resulted in the deaths of 12 students and one teacher.

— This story was updated at 9:39 a.m.