AURORA, Colo. — Christian Bale, star of the Batman trilogy of movies, paid a surprise visit Tuesday to injured victims of the recent shooting rampage in Aurora, Colo., that occurred during a midnight screening of the latest Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises.
Twelve people were killed and 58 were injured in the early Friday attack; a suspect was arrested in a nearby parking lot afterward.
Bill Voloch, interim president of Medical Center of Aurora, told The Denver Post that Mr. Bale spent about 2 1/2 hours Tuesday at the hospital, where he met with seven shooting victims. Five are being treated at the center; the two others came from Swedish Medical Center to meet with the British actor.
"The patients were really happy to meet Bale," Mr. Voloch was quoted as saying. "They are obviously big fans of his movies. They wanted to see Batman and were really pleased to see Bale."
Mr. Bale, with his wife, Sibi Blazic, also met with doctors, police officers, and emergency medical technicians who were among the first responders, the paper said.
Campaigns had been launched on Facebook and Twitter urging Mr. Bale, dressed as Batman, to visit children injured in the shooting. But the actor apparently left his mask and cape at home. Photos posted on social media sites showed him dressed in a blue T-shirt as he walked down a hallway and visited with a patient.
The Medical Center of Aurora received 18 patients from the shooting, seven of whom were admitted. As of late Monday, three of them remained in intensive care and two were in critical condition. Four patients went to Swedish Medical Center, according to The Denver Post. The other victims were taken to other hospitals.
At the University of Colorado Hospital, Katie Medley gave birth to a healthy baby boy as her husband, Caleb, wounded in the theater shooting, lay in a medically induced coma one floor below her.
Hugo Jackson Medley was born at 5:11 a.m. Tuesday, hospital spokesman Dan Weaver said. Both mother and baby were doing great, he said.
Mr. Medley, an aspiring comic, has undergone three surgeries since Friday's shooting. Ms. Medley wasn't injured.
Mr. Medley is on a ventilator but is starting to breathe on his own and can squeeze people's hands, family friend Michael West said.
"He is showing signs of improvement," said Mr. West, who is leading an online effort to raise money for the young family, which doesn't have health insurance.
Mr. West said Katie Medley had been scheduled to be induced and deliver her baby on Monday before the shooting, but she changed hospitals to be close to her husband.
The couple went to the midnight showing of the The Dark Knight Rises as a last date before becoming parents.
Ms. Medley's father, David Sanchez, spoke about the couple's ordeal outside the court house where the shooting suspect made his first court appearance Monday. Since then, donations to the family have shot up to more than $100,000.
Meanwhile, some relatives of people killed in the shooting are urging TV news outlets to resist using alleged killer James Holmes' name and image in their stories for fear it gives him the infamy he craves.
Two families made that specific point to Anderson Cooper on CNN, who said Tuesday he has largely complied.
Tom Teves, whose son Alex was among 12 people shot and killed at the theater, challenged TV news divisions during a Monday interview with Mr. Cooper.
"I would like to see CNN come out with a policy that said moving forward we're not going to talk about the gunman," Mr. Teves said. "What we're going to say is, a coward walked into a movie theater and started shooting people. He's apprehended. The coward's in jail. He will never see the light of day again. Let's move on to the victims."
Jordan Ghawi, whose 24-year-old sister, Jessica, was killed, said he has been talking publicly about her in part because "I don't want the media to be saturated with the shooter's name. The more air time these victims have, the less time that man gets his time on television."
Mr. Cooper said he used phrases like "suspect," "accused killer" or "accused shooter." He also tried to limit images of Mr. Holmes on his show, airing some from the suspect's court appearance Monday during his hour-long newscast.
On Tuesday, a judge barred news cameras from Mr. Holmes' next court hearing. Reporters can still attend the hearing on Monday, when prosecutors are expected to file formal charges against him, but the judge denied a request by several Denver-area media outlets after weighing issues including whether such coverage would interfere with having a fair trial.
Outside Colorado, men accused of making threats during or after other screenings of the Batman film have been arrested in separate incidents in Maine, Arizona, and Southern California.