A lone gunman took the lives of five people and wounded at least 25 more at an LGBTQ club Saturday night (November 19) in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Police have identified the suspect as 22-year-old Anderson Lee Aldrich, who was subdued by patrons shortly after shots rang out inside Club Q before midnight, per NPR. A law enforcement official told KDVR the suspect used an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle during the attack, as well. Authorities are still investigating whether it was a hate crime.
Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers told reporters one of the patrons "took the handgun from the [shooter] and hit him with the handgun to disable him." Aldrich was taken into custody after police arrived minutes after the first call around 11:57 p.m. local time.
"We owe them a great debt of thanks," Colorado Springs Police Chief Adrian Vasquez said during a Sunday news (November 20) conference.
Club Q, which opened in 2002, serves the city's LGBTQ community with drag shows, karaoke, and dance parties for people over 18.
"Club Q has been a safe haven for the LGBTQ community in an area where it hasn't always been easy," Colorado Gov. Jared Polis, the country's first openly gay governor, said at a church service Sunday. "It's a place where we can gather, dance, and share the joy."
The business's official Facebook page posted a statement following the horrific incident:
"Club Q is devastated by the senseless attack on our community. Our prays and thoughts are with all the victims and their families and friends. We thank the quick reactions of heroic customers that subdued the gunman and ended this hate attack."
The vicious shooting happened the night before Trans Day of Remembrance, which happens annually on November 20. It also comes six years after a shooter killed 49 people and injured 53 more at the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida.
The club will be closed until further notice, according to reporters. Owners also posted a link to a donation page.
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