The Colorado Springs Police Department on Monday identified the five people who were killed in a shooting Saturday night at an LGBTQ nightclub.
Speaking at an afternoon press conference, Police Chief Adrián Vásquez identified the victims as Kelly Loving, 40; Daniel Aston, 28; Derrick Rump, Ashley Paugh, 35; and Raymond Green. He identified the “heroes” who brought down the gunman as Thomas James and Richard Fiero, a decorated Army veteran.
“[O]Society often loses track of the victims of these sad and tragic events. In all the talk about the suspect, we strive to give the victims the dignity and respect they deserve, as well as shine the light of public attention on the victims,” Vasquez said while announcing their identities.
Authorities identified 22-year-old Anderson Lee Aldrich as the suspect in the Saturday night attack at Club Q. He was charged Monday with five counts of first-degree murder and five counts of committing a hate crime involving caused bodily injury in the Saturday night attack. attack at Club Q. He remained hospitalized with unspecified injuries, police said.
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Colorado 4th Judicial District Attorney Michael Allen said that once the suspect is released from the hospital, he will have a scheduled first court appearance.
The charges were preliminary and had not been brought before the court by prosecutors, Allen said. Hate crime charges would require proof that the attacker was motivated by bias, such as the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of the victims.
The attack was stopped when a customer seized a gun from Aldrich, hit him with it and pinned him down until police arrived minutes later.
Court documents establishing what led to Aldrich’s arrest were sealed at the request of prosecutors, who said releasing the details could jeopardize the investigation. Information on whether Aldrich had an attorney was not immediately available.
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A law enforcement official told The Associated Press the suspect used an AR-15-style semi-automatic weapon, and a handgun and additional ammunition magazines were also recovered.
Thirteen people remained hospitalized Monday, authorities said. Five people have been treated and released.
The assault quickly raised questions about why authorities did not try to take Aldrich’s weapons in 2021, when he was arrested after his mother reported that he threatened her with a pipe bomb and other weapons.
Although authorities at the time said no explosives were found, gun control advocates have questioned why police didn’t use Colorado’s “red flag” laws to seize the guns her mother says she had. There is no public record of prosecutors filing felony kidnapping and threatening charges against Aldrich.
Speaking to reporters Monday, Allen acknowledged Colorado’s “restrictive sealing laws,” whereby cases that are filed in a court in the state of Colorado and dismissed are automatically sealed.
Separately, a spokesperson for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints confirmed to Fox News Digital that Aldrich is on their membership rolls but has not been active in the church for more than a decade.
“The senseless act of violence in Colorado Springs is of great sadness and concern to us. We are very concerned about any violence in our communities and especially condemn violent acts that are the result of bigotry against any of God’s children,” the church said. .
“We join others in mourning the loss of those whose lives were taken and offer prayers of comfort and our deepest condolences to their loved ones. We also pray for the healing of the survivors of this shocking shooting and express our love to them.” .
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Other outlets reported that Aldrich is the biological grandson of outgoing California Assemblyman Randy Voepel. His office could not be reached to confirm the relationship.
Associated Press contributed to this report.