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Colorado LGBTQ night club shooting suspect charged with hate crimes

Colorado Springs Shooting
Posted at 7:14 AM, Dec 06, 2022

The suspect accused of killing five people inside a Colorado LGBTQ nightclub last month was formally charged with murder and hate crimes Tuesday, the Associated Press reported.

Anderson Lee Aldrich, who identifies as nonbinary and uses they/them pronouns, was charged with 305 counts, including assault, bias-motivated crimes and attempted murder, Denver 7 reported.

This also includes dozens of sentence enhancers that'll allow prosecutors to seek heavier penalties under state law should they be convicted, according to court records released during the hearing, the news outlet reported.

"We are not going to tolerate actions against community members based on their sexual identity,” said Fourth Judicial District Attorney Michael Allen during a news conference, Denver 7 reported. “Members of that community have been harassed, intimidated and abused for too long.”

The 22-year-old suspect was initially arrested and then charged on November 23 with 10 counts, divided into five counts each for first-degree murder and bias-motivated crime.

The charges came a day after the suspect left the hospital for injuries they sustained when being subdued by bar patrons at the club, KOAA reported.

Aldrich is accused of opening fire inside the Colorado Springs club with an AR-15-style rifle, killing five people and injuring 17 others on Nov. 19.

Killed in the attack were Raymond Green Vance, 22; Daniel Aston, 28; Ashley Paugh, 35; Derrick Rump, 38; and Kelly Loving, 40.

Two club patrons are credited with subduing Aldrich.