Club Q shooting suspect Anderson Aldrich appears in court, charged with 12 new charges

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CNN

The alleged gunman accused of killing five people in a mass shooting at an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colorado, last November faces 12 more charges, bringing the total to 317.

Anderson Lee Aldrich personally appeared in court on Friday, where Colorado Fourth Judicial District Attorney Michael Allen announced the new crime charges, including four counts of attempted murder and two hate crimes.

Aldrich, 22, was initially charged in December with 305 counts, including counts of first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, assault and hate crimes causing bodily harm.

The new charges were added for two additional victims present at the nightclub during the Club Q shooting, Allen told U.S. District Judge Michael McHenry.

Aldrich — whose lawyers say he identifies as non-binary and uses they/they pronouns — could face life in prison without parole if convicted of the first-degree murder charges.

The suspect allegedly entered Club Q late on November 19 with an AR-style weapon and a handgun and opened fire, killing Daniel Aston, Raymond Green Vance, Kelly Loving, Ashley Paugh and Derrick Rump. At least 19 other people were wounded, police said, most of them with gunshot wounds.

The attack was interrupted by two patrons who knocked down and held the suspect until police arrived at the club, which was seen as a safe space for the LGBTQ community in Colorado Springs.

Prior to an earlier hearing, Aldrich’s lawyers said the suspect was identified as non-binary and would be treated as Mx. Aldrich — a distinction Allen said would have “no impact” on his office’s adjudication of the case.

A neighbor of the accused shooter, who said he sometimes played video games with Aldrich, told CNN that the suspect never mentioned that they were non-binary.

Aldrich’s next court appearance is a preliminary hearing on Feb. 22.

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