CNN PRODUCER NOTE Cherif was running late to the midnight showing of the new Batman movie. When he got to Century theater in Aurora, Colorado, the 12:01 showing in theater 9 was sold out, so he had to go to the 12:10 showing in theater 16. Approximately 15 minutes into movie an alarm in the theater went off. 'People thought it was a fire at first. They were saying things like "I can't believe this, I better get my money back,"' he says. Movie patrons started filing out of theater 16's emergency exit, but he says once they opened they door they were meet by the flashing blue and red lights of police cars and an array of policemen.
'I realized then that there was something seriously going on,' he says. Confused, he and other movie-goers stay in the parking lot for a few moments trying to gage what was happening. 'I started asking people if they knew that was going on, one person said it was a bomb, but no one seemed to really know,' he says. After capturing a video of the scene, he left for home after the police verified that he was not in theater 9. Hours later when he found out about the shooting, he was terrified.
'It is unbelievable what happened. It makes me not want to go to public places,' he says. As a resident of Aurora for more than five years, he says the shooting has left him in shock. 'I know it happened. I was there, but it is so unreal,' he says.
- Jareen, CNN iReport producer