Army veteran gives account of tackling Colorado Springs gunman
Colorado Springs shooting suspect Anderson Lee Aldrich wanted to be the “next mass killer” and go out “in a blaze”, according to past arrest records.
Over one year before the 22-year-old allegedly killed five victims in a mass shooting at LGBT+ nightclub Club Q, Aldrich was arrested for making an alleged bomb threat. No charges were filed, and the case was sealed.
Records have surfaced showing that the accused shooter’s grandmother told police that they said they were “going to be the next mass killer and has been collecting ammunition, firearms, bullet-proof body armor and storing it in the basement of the residence”.
Aldrich, who allegedly identifies as nonbinary, is now facing preliminary charges including five counts of murder along with five charges of committing a bias-motivated crime causing bodily injury over Saturday night’s massacre.
Aldrich’s father has sparked outrage after he said his first reaction on being informed of the mass shooting was to question why his child was at a gay bar.
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Father of Colorado Springs suspected shooter said he was told Aldrich died years ago
Aaron Brink, a former porn actor and MMA fighter, told CBS8 he received a call on Sunday night from his child’s public defender to say he was under arrest for the mass shooting.
During the course of that interview with the San Diego-based news outlet, Mr Brink, 48, said that his ex-wife Laura Voepel called him in 2016 to say that their child, who was born Nicholas Brink, had changed their name and died at suicide.
“His mother told me he changed his name because I was in (reality TV show) Intervention and I had been a porn actor,” Mr Brink told CBS8.
He had continued to believe that his child was dead until six months ago, when he got a call out of the blue from Aldrich.
According to Mr Brink’s account, Aldrich was “pissed off” and wanted to “poke at the old man”.
He went on to say he taught his child how to fight at a young age and “praised him for violent behaviour”.
“I told him it works. It is instant and you’ll get immediate results,” Mr. Brink told CBS8.
Johanna ChisholmNovember 24, 2022 1:10 p.m
Who are the victims of the Club Q shooting?
Here’s what we know so far about the five people who were killed.
Johanna ChisholmNovember 24, 2022 12:50 p.m
Hero veteran reveals how he tackled suspect with help from trans woman
A former Army captain tackled a shooter who had opened fire on an LGBT+ nightclub in Colorado Springs and beat the suspect unconscious as a trans woman in heels stomped on him.
Richard Fierro, 45, said he was with family and friends at Club Q on Saturday night when the suspect burst in and started spraying the club with automatic gunfire.
Mr Fierro told the New York Times his military training kicked in and he ran towards the shooter, grabbed him from behind by his body armor and pulled him to the ground.
“I just knew I had to take him down,” Mr Fierro said.
Johanna ChisholmNovember 24, 2022 12:30 p.m
Gay club shooting suspect evaded Colorado’s red flag gun law
A year and a half before he was arrested in the Colorado Springs gay nightclub shooting that left five people dead, Anderson Lee Aldrich allegedly threatened his mother with a homemade bomb, forcing neighbors in surrounding homes to evacuate while the bomb squad and crisis negotiators talked him into surrender.
Yet despite that scare, there’s no record prosecutors ever moved forward with felony kidnapping and menacing charges against Aldrich, or that police or relatives tried to trigger Colorado’s “red flag” law that would have allowed authorities to seize the weapons and ammo the man’s mother says he had with him.
Gun control advocates say Aldrich’s June 2021 threat is an example of a red flag law ignored, with potentially deadly consequences. While it’s not clear the law could have prevented Saturday night’s attack — such gun seizures can be in effect for as little as 14 days and be extended by a judge in six-month increments — they say it could have at least slowed Aldrich and raised his profile with law enforcement.
Bernard Condon and Colleen Slevin have the story.
Johanna ChisholmNovember 24, 2022 12:10 p.m
Records suggest suspect wanted to ‘go out in a blaze’
Anderson Lee Aldrich, the suspected shooter who killed five people in a Colorado Springs LGBT+ club over the weekend, previously told their family they wanted to be the “next mass killer”.
In June of 2021, Aldrich, who identifies as nonbinary, was arrested for threatening the grandmother, with whom they lived, with a homemade bomb, prompting a heavily armed police tactical team to respond and evacuate surrounding homes.
Eventually, crisis negotiators were able to bring Aldrich in, and they were booked into El Paso County Jail on two counts of felony menacing and three counts of first-degree kidnapping, according to the sheriff’s office.
Johanna Chisholm24 November 2022 11:50
Colorado Springs shooting suspect had ‘threatened mother with home-made bomb’ in June 2021
A person with the same name and age was arrested in June 2021 after their mother told officers that he was threatening her with a homemade bomb and other weapons.
Colorado prosecutors declined to explicitly confirm the connection on Sunday morning, saying only that the incident in 2021 was “all part of the investigation and will be released as appropriate”.
Johanna Chisholm24 November 2022 11:30
Father with anti-gay views says ‘no excuse for child’s shooting’
The father of shooting suspect Anderson Lee Aldrich said while he holds anti-gay views, there’s no excuse for his child allegedly shooting people in an LGBT+ nightclub in Colorado Springs.
“I’m so sorry guys for your loss,” Aaron Brink, 48, said. “With no regard to politics, it’s human life. I’m so sorry My soul goes out to you.”
“Life is so fragile, and it’s valuable,” he said. “Those people’s lives were valuable.”
Alisha Rahaman Sarkar24 November 2022 11:10
Mike Pence backed away from anti-LGBT figures before five killed in Colorado shooting
Former vice president Mike Pence appeared to take a step back from his party’s hard-right wing stand in an interview that was taped just days before the deadly attack at a gay nightclub that has been blamed on a rising tide of anti-LGBT hate.
Mr Pence was interviewed by Margaret Brennan on CBS’s Face the Nation this past week; his remarks were broadcast on Sunday.
During the interview, he was asked about the legislation which was passed by the US Senate this week, seeking to protect the rights of same-sex marriages at the federal level. Unlike other conservatives in his party, Mr Pence seemed to back away from the rhetoric that has been embraced by many far-right commentators such as Matt Walsh, Chris Rufo, and Tucker Carlson seeking to link LGBT Americans to pedophilia.
The free-flowing accusations of “grooming” against gay Americans that have emerged from this wing of the GOP have been blamed for a new wave of violence and discrimination against LGBT communities both online and in the real world.
John Bowden has the details.
Josh Marcus24 November 2022 10:48
Tucker Carlson slammed for dismissing anti-LGBT+ motive in shooting
Fox News host Tucker Carlson has come under fire for dismissing the likelihood that anti-LGBT+ hate was behind the mass shooting at a Colorado Springs gay club where five persons were killed and another 18 sustained injuries.
In the wake of the mass shooting, the right-wing news presenter brushed off the suspect’s motive, suggesting that Aldrich was “clearly a troubled person”.
“So the most obvious question is why did he shoot 30 people? The truth is we don’t know,” he said during The Tucker Carlson Tonight show.
“We do know he was clearly a troubled person,” Mr Carlson said, adding that the suspect was arrested in 2021 for threatening his mother with a homemade bomb.
Alisha Rahaman Sarkar24 November 2022 10:10
AOC eviscerates Lauren Boebert for ‘thoughts and prayers’ response to Colorado Springs mass shooting
Following the Saturday midnight shooting, Ms Boebert tweeted that the “news out of Colorado Springs is absolutely awful”.
“This morning the victims and their families are in my prayers. This lawless violence needs to end and end quickly,” she added.
Alisha Rahaman Sarkar has the story.
Josh Marcus24 November 2022 09:40