In preliminary filings, Anderson Lee Aldrich, the suspect in the Colorado Springs shooting, is facing hate crime charges.
According to a report from ABC News, the 22-year-old gunman has been charged with hate crimes for allegedly killing five people and injuring more at a shooting that took place on Saturday night at Club Q, an LGBTQ+ nightclub in Colorado Springs.
Aldrich is accused of walking into the LGBTQ+ establishment and immediately openening fire on the crowd. At least two people came forward from the crowd to confront Aldrich, subduing him to cease firing — a fight which saved the lives of countless others. Reports originally indicated 25 people were injured, but police have amended the number of gunshot injuries sustained to seventeen.
One of the patrons who intervened was identified by The New York Times as Richard M. Fierro, a former Army officer watching a drag show with his wife, and daughter, who are currently recovering from injuries. Other clubgoers joined Fierro in taking down the gunman, one such patron was a trans woman, cited by drag artist Del Lusional for having "saved my life and stomped the shooter's face in."
\u201cThe one who saved my life and stomped the shooter\u2019s face in was not a drag queen, she is a trans woman. Let\u2019s not call trans women drag queens during this time of grieving over a transphobic attack.\u201d— Del Lusional (@Del Lusional) 1669092247
Aldrich will face five counts of first-degree murder and five counts of bias-motivated crime causing bodily injury, under Colorado’s hate crime law.
With the shooting taking place the night before Trans Day of Remembrance, people have flocked to social media to commemorate the lives of those lost in the tragedy. Two of the victims, Daniel Davis Aston and Derrik Rump, have been identified, both of whom were employees of Club Q.
\u201cDevastating.\n\nI've been holding off on posting this until it was confirmed by a major news source. This is now confirmed by ABC.\n\nDaniel Aston, transgender man, was one of the victims.\n\nHe once tweeted about how patrons at club Q would tell him "you make me feel safe"\u201d— Erin Reed (@Erin Reed) 1668986787
A third victim, Kelly Loving, was identified as a visitor from Denver.
Locals gathered throughout Sunday at the All Souls Unitarian Church to pay tribute to the victims. Due to the volume of attendees, the Church repeated the memorial service three times that day.
According to the Denver Post, the current charges against Aldrich are “arrest only” and are subject to change when prosecutors make their official filing.
Photos courtesy of Helen H. Richardson/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images