Anderson Lee Aldrich has been named as the suspect in a shooting that occurred this past weekend at a gay nightclub in Colorado. According to police, Aldrich entered Club Q in Colorado Springs and started shooting right away, leaving five people dead and at least 19 others injured.
According to an online docket in the El Paso County Courts, Aldrich, 22, is charged with five counts of first-degree murder and five counts of a bias-motivated crime causing bodily injury in connection with the shooting.
Police reported that the suspect was taken into custody and was receiving medical attention at a hospital, adding that no shots were fired at him. As of late Monday morning, Aldrich was still in the hospital, and Colorado Springs Police Chief Adrian Vasquez reported that despite their efforts to interview the suspect for the investigation, the suspect had not provided any statements to the authorities.
At 11:56 p.m. local time, the first 911 calls about the shooting were made, according to the police. At 11:57 p.m., police were called, and at midnight, an officer arrived at Club Q. Police reported that the suspect was apprehended at 12:02 a.m.
Two guns, including a long rifle Vasquez described in an interview with CNN as an AR-style weapon, were reportedly found at the scene, according to the police.
Although the long rifle was the primary weapon used in the shooting, the suspect also had a handgun, he revealed to CNN on Monday.
According to records, the suspect purchased both the handgun and the AR-style rifle, according to two law enforcement sources who spoke to CNN. The exact date of those purchases has not been confirmed by CNN.
According to the club’s owners, who examined security footage, the shooter arrived at the club heavily armed and wearing a flak jacket resembling one from the military.
The US Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado said in a statement on Monday that numerous federal agencies and offices, including the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, are aware of the shooting even though the suspect is already facing state charges. The attorney’s office said it would “review all available facts of the incident to determine what federal response is warranted.”
One of the individuals who stopped the shooter was hurt, according to Vasquez, who added that the injury wasn’t life-threatening. According to Vasquez, the second individual was unharmed.
According to a news release from the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office at the time and his mother’s former landlord, Aldrich was detained in June 2021 in connection with a bomb threat that resulted in a standoff at his mother’s house. El Paso County includes Colorado Springs.
Based on his name and birthdate, two law enforcement officials verified that the suspect in Saturday’s shooting and the bomb threat was the same person.
Aldrich is seen in a video obtained by CNN turning himself in to authorities last year after allegedly making a bomb threat. Aldrich can be seen leaving the house barefoot and with his hands raised in the video footage captured by the home’s owner’s Ring door camera as he approaches sheriff’s deputies.
Aldrich was arrested after walking out the front door, as seen in other video footage previously reported by CNN, several hours after the initial police call was made. This was accomplished by the sheriff’s crisis negotiations unit. No explosives were discovered in the house by the authorities.
The owner of the home where Aldrich’s mother resided, Leslie Bowman, gave the videos to CNN. According to Bowman, Aldrich would travel to the house to see his mother, who had rented a room there for a little over a year.
By tweeting a statement that included the words “I do not condone or support the violence and lawlessness that took place on Wednesday, January 6th, at our nation’s capital,” Voepel later attempted to retract his remarks. It is abhorrent and unnecessary that lives were lost, government property was stolen, and law and order were flagrantly disregarded.
It has been questioned whether Colorado’s red flag law should have applied to Aldrich and whether it would have stopped the shooting at Club Q since it was passed in 2019. Colorado, which has seen a number of high-profile mass shootings in the last 20 years, passed its red flag law in 2019. It’s intended to temporarily prevent an individual in crisis from accessing firearms through a court order, triggered by the individual’s family, a member of their household or a law enforcement officer.