Suspect in Colorado LGBTQ club shooting that left 5 dead and 18 injured had a standoff with police last year after a bomb threat, reports say

  • The Colorado LGBTQ club shooting suspect had a previous standoff with police, per the AP.

  • At least five people were killed and 18 injured at ClubQ in Colorado Springs.

  • Police said 22-year-old Anderson Aldrich is in custody as the shooting suspect.

The suspect who police say killed at least 5 people and injured 18 others in a Colorado LGBTQ club had a standoff with police last year after police responded to a call of a bomb threat, according to reports.

Colorado Springs Police Chief Adrian Vasquez identified 22-year-old Anderson Aldrich, who police took into custody at the scene of the shooting as the suspect. Vasquez said the shooting suspect entered ClubQ on Saturday night and immediately began shooting with a "long rifle" before two people "confronted and fought" the Aldrich, holding the shooting suspect down until police arrived.

At a Monday press conference, Vasquez named the two individuals who stopped the suspect, one of whom hit them with one of his own firearms. Thomas James and Richard Fierro were mentioned as "heroes" at the conference. Colorado Springs mayor John Suthers said the two "saved a lot of lives."

"I have never encountered a person who had engaged in such heroic action who was so humble about it," Suthers said of meeting Fierro. "He said 'I was just trying to protect my family.'"

Here's everything we know so far about the suspected shooter.

Formal charges have not yet been filed

On Monday, Colorado Springs District Attorney Michael Allen said that no charges have been filed yet, and that the suspected shooter was being held without bond with charges coming within days. The suspected shooter was still being treated for injuries at a hospital on Monday.

Court documents show preliminary charges of five counts of first-degree murder and five counts of a bias-motivated crime causing bodily injury, per CNN.

The suspected shooter's initial court appearance from jail and charges will come this week, Allen added.

The FBI is aiding the police investigation of the shooting. Chief Vasquez said previously at a press conference that no motive had been identified for the shooting and it was not being investigated as a hate crime — but that police were looking into investigating it as a hate crime.

The club, where the carnage unfolded, had advertised an all-ages drag brunch on Sunday in honor of Transgender Day of Remembrance on its Facebook page.

The suspect identifies as non-binary, according to their attorney

In a court filing on Tuesday, ahead of the suspect's initial court appearance from jail on Wednesday, an attorney wrote, "Anderson Aldrich is non-binary," according to the filing. "They use They/them pronouns, and for the purpose of all formal filings, will be addressed as Mx. Aldrich."

The suspected shooter's history with law enforcement

In June of 2021, the suspect was arrested after their mother said they threatened her with a homemade bomb, according to the Associated Press. Though the suspect was arrested with a bomb squad and crisis negotiators responding, there is no record of prosecutors charging them with felony kidnapping charges, according to the AP.

Colorado Springs Police Public Information Officer Pam Castro would not answer any questions about the suspect's previous interactions with police at a press conference on Sunday, as well as on Monday.

He was not deterred by Colorado's red flag law

During a Monday press conference, Allen and Mayor John Suthers offered condolences to the victims' families and said that they could not elaborate on whether police had utilized the state's red flag law after the suspect's prior incident, adding that information about the incident is sealed due to Colorado state law.

"Law enforcement agencies in appropriate circumstances should use the law," Suthers said. "I would caution against concluding that this circumstance needed the application for that red flag law."

November 22, 2022: This story has been updated to reflect a Tuesday court filing from Aldrich's attorney.


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