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Club Q Shooting Suspect Formally Charged with Murder and Hate Crimes

Two mugshots show Anderson Lee Aldrich.

Mass shooting suspect Anderson Lee Aldrich appears in two booking photos provided by the Colorado Springs Police Department.

Anderson Lee Aldrich, the suspected Club Q shooter, was formally charged at a hearing on Tuesday. Charges include murder in the first degree, bias motivated crime, assault in the first degree, criminal attempt to commit assault in the first degree, and crime of violence.

The 22-year-old is the person who opened fire at Club Q, an LGBTQ nightclub, killing five people and injuring others just before midnight Nov. 19 in Colorado Springs, Colorado, authorities said. The defense has maintained that Aldrich is nonbinary and uses they/them pronounces. With new charges, prosecutors are alleging that the 22-year-old targeted the business with a bigoted mindset.

The slain victims were identified as bartender Daniel Davis Aston, 28; customer Kelly Loving, 40; bartender and bar co-owner Derrick Rump, 38, customer Ashley Paugh, 35; and customer Raymond Greene Vance, 22.

Aston was a transgender man. Loving was a transgender woman, and Rump was gay. Paugh was not part of the LGBTQ community, her sister said. Vance was there with his girlfriend Kassy and her family. Kassy’s father Richard M. Fierro, a local man who served four combat tours in the U.S. Army, is credited as one of the people who stopped Aldrich. He told The New York Times he grabbed the gun out of the shooter’s hand and “just started hitting him in the head, over and over.” He ordered a nearby woman to stomp on the shooter’s head with her high heels, he said.

Aldrich’s father Aaron Brink — a former porn actor who once appeared in the TV show Intervention — has spoken to San Diego, California, CBS affiliate KFMB. After being told his son was a suspected mass murderer, Brink expressed relief he wasn’t gay.

“You know Mormons don’t do gay. We don’t do gay,” he said. “There’s no gays in the Mormon church. We don’t do gay.”

“There’s no excuse for going and killing people,” he added, much later in the interview. “If you’re killing people, there’s something wrong. It’s not the answer.”

The Club Q shooting suspect, who changed their name at age 15 from Nicholas Franklin Brink with their family’s support, was previously arrested in 2021 in what has been listed as a kidnapping case. Mother Laura Lea Voepel claimed Aldrich threatened her with a a homemade bomb, multiple weapons, and ammunition. There were no formal charges, and the case was reportedly sealed.

Public information officers from Colorado’s District Court for El Paso County did not immediately respond to Law&Crime’s emails requesting a copy of the court documents.

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