Mass shooting at gay nightclub in Colorado Springs

The suspect, who is believed to have killed five and injured 18 in a mass shooting at a Colorado gay nightclub, is in custody, police say.

The attacker’s motive is not yet clear, but club owners believe it was a hate crime.

The gunman, identified by police as Anderson Lee Aldrich, 22, opened fire at Club Q in Colorado Springs, Colo., just before midnight Saturday, police said.

He was quickly overpowered by guests at the club and taken into custody when police arrived minutes after receiving a call, authorities said.

Police barrier tape in front of a parking lot.

Police tape near the scene of the fatal shooting in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

(Thomas Peipert/Associated Press)

“At least two heroic people” confronted the gunman and stopped the shooting, Colorado Springs Police Chief Adrian Vasquez said, adding, “We owe them a great debt of gratitude.”

According to Vasquez, two firearms were found at the scene, including a “long gun.”

“My heart breaks for the family and friends of those who were lost, injured and traumatized in this horrific shooting,” said Colorado Gov. Jared Polis, who in 2018 became the first openly gay man in the United States to be elected governor “ill with the shooting “.

The attack was over within minutes. Police received numerous 911 calls beginning at 11:56 p.m. and an officer arrived at midnight. The suspect was arrested at 12:02 a.m., police said.

Two people hug the morning after the shooting.

Jessy Smith Cruz hugs Jadzia Dax McClendon the morning after the shooting at Club Q in Colorado Springs.

(Jason Connolly/AFP/Getty Images)

Several of the 18 injured are in critical condition with gunshot wounds, officials said.

The suspect is being treated at a hospital, police said, adding that officers did not shoot at him.

In a statement, Club Q described the shooting as a hate attack.

“Club Q is devastated by the senseless attack on our community,” the club posted on its Facebook page. It said its prayers are with victims and families, adding: “We thank the quick responses from heroic customers who overwhelmed the shooter and ended this hate attack.”

Bouquets of flowers and a sign reading "love over hate" on the floor next to police tape.

An improvised memorial in front of the nightclub in Colorado Springs.

(Jason Connolly/AFP/Getty Images)

The attack was the sixth mass killing in the United States this month and comes seven months after 21 people died in a school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.

Since 2006, there have been 523 mass killings in the United States, resulting in 2,727 deaths as of November 19, according to the Associated Press/USA Today database of mass killings in the United States

https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2022-11-20/gunman-arrested-in-mass-shooting-at-gay-nightclub-in-colorado-springs Mass shooting at gay nightclub in Colorado Springs

Alley Einstein

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