HomeUS News updateColorado LGBTQ club shooting suspect ran a neo-Nazi site, testimony reveals

Colorado LGBTQ club shooting suspect ran a neo-Nazi site, testimony reveals

A police detective testified Wednesday that the suspect in last year’s mass shooting at a Colorado LGBTQ club ran a neo-Nazi website and used gay and racial slurs.

The suspect, Anderson Lee Aldrich, also posted a rifle scope at a gay pride parade and used a slur when referring to someone gay, Detective Rebecca Joine of the Colorado Springs Police Department testified on the first day of a three-day trial to determine whether Whether or not the evidence is strong enough to proceed with hate crime charges against Aldrich remains to be determined.

Javier Kraus, a former neighbor and friend of the suspect, told NBC News in an exclusive interview last year that an FBI agent asked him about the two websites at the FBI field office in Colorado Springs.

Krause told investigators that one of the websites, a forum-type “free speech” site where people anonymously posted racist and anti-Semitic memes, language and videos, was created by the suspect.

Cross, who lived a door away from Aldrich in a Colorado Springs apartment complex, according to public records, said he told the FBI that Aldrich created the free speech website in late spring or early summer. Cross said Aldrich described the site as “a forum where people can go and post whatever they want.”

Aldrich, who wore an orange prison jumpsuit at the hearing and cried at times, identifies as nonbinary and uses the pronouns they and them.

During the hearing, new details also emerged about the heroic actions of the two men credited with ending the November 19 attack at Club Q.

Detective Ashton Gardner told the court that Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Thomas James grabbed the barrel of the suspect’s rifle after the shots were fired in an attempt to “disarm the shooter” because it was too hot.

Mourners at a memorial outside Club Q in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Mourners at a memorial outside Club Q on November 26, 2022 in Colorado Springs.Brett Forrest / SOPA Images / LightRocket via Getty Images File

“There is an initial struggle over the rifle … that was used,” he said.

James told investigators that he fell to the floor with Aldrich, who pulled out a handgun and fired two shots. James was hit in the torso, Gardner told the courtroom.

He, along with Richard Fierro, a 45-year-old Army veteran from Colorado Springs, subdued the suspect, holding Aldrich up for officers.

Eventually, others came to the aid of James and Fierro.

The suspect was arrested and charged with 323 criminal counts, including first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, first- and second-degree assault, and crimes motivated by bias.

Gardner also recounted stories shared with investigators by people who survived the attack. Detectives said a woman was shot in the face as she tried to flee with her daughter. Another woman was shot in the back while running, while others were playing dead hoping the shooter would follow them.

A man overturned a table to provide cover as he shot out. The man and his wife were shot but survived.

Authorities said Aldrich entered the club and immediately began firing a semi-automatic rifle. Police said Danielle Aston, Raymond Green Vance, Kelly Loving, Ashley Paugh and Derrick Rump were killed in the attack and 17 others were injured.

There will be a hearing again on Thursday. A video purportedly showing the suspect firing the shots is expected to be played at the venue.

The club announced last week that it plans to rebuild and reopen with enhanced security measures and a permanent tribute to those who died. Matthew Haynes, Club Q’s founding owner, said in a statement that he wanted to assure people that they are “working very hard to bring that back home to us.”

“We look forward to being able to gather as a community again,” he said.

The club’s management team said two of the victims were hired as employees and “will serve on an administrative basis, assisting management with rebuilding efforts, community relations and more.” The team said it plans to hire at least one more victim and distribute lost wages to former employees and contractors through a fundraising and a GoFundMe campaign.

Joe Yurcaba, ben collins, dennis romero And Deon J Hampton Contribution,



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