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Colorado shooting suspect charged with 10 counts of murder

Family and friends mourn victims of Boulder mass shooting 02:13

This is a developing story – read the latest updates here. Earlier coverage is below.

The 21-year-old suspect accused of opening fire inside a Colorado grocery store and killing 10 people has been charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder. Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa was being treated for a gunshot wound, but was released from the hospital Tuesday afternoon and taken into the custody of local police.

The victims who died in the shooting were between the ages of 20 and 65. Among them was a Boulder police officer, 51-year-old Eric Talley, a father of seven children, who responded to the shooting.

"He died charging into the line of fire to save people who were simply trying to live their lives and go food shopping, and the man who gunned them down will be held fully responsible," said Michael Dougherty, the Boulder County district attorney.

The other victims were identified as Tralona Bartkowiak, 49; Suzanne Fountain, 59; Teri Leiker, 51; Kevin Mahoney, 61; Lynn Murray, 62; Rikki Olds, 25; Neven Stanisic, 23; Denny Stong, 20; and Jody Waters, 65.

At the White House, President Biden said another city has been "scarred by gun violence" and called on Congress to pass gun control measures. "I just can't imagine how the families are feeling, the victims whose futures were stolen from them, from their families, from their loved ones, who now have to struggle to go on and try to make sense of what's happened," Mr. Biden said.

Boulder Colorado shooting
Residents pay respects to Officer Eric Talley in Boulder, Colorado, on March 23, 2021.  Chet Strange / Getty

"Every time you saw her, she had a smile on her face": Family member mourns shooting victim

Friends and family of 49-year-old Tralona Bartkowiak remembered her as a gifted artist who always had a smile on her face.

"Every time you saw her, she had a smile on her face," her cousin, David, told CBS Los Angeles. "I don't think I ever saw her angry."

Read more about the victims here.

By Jordan Freiman

Shooting suspect found guilty of third degree assault in 2017 incident

The shooting suspect was previously convicted of third degree assault, a misdemeanor, stemming from an incident when he was in high school, according to documents obtained by CBS News.

According to a police report of the 2017 incident, a teacher and fellow students said they saw Alissa punch another student in the side of the head and hit him repeatedly after he had fallen to the ground, leaving the victim bloodied and vomiting. The suspect admitted to punching the other student, but said it was retaliation for bullying and racist comments, the report said. 

By Victoria Albert

Colorado shooting suspect allegedly bought assault weapon 6 days before shooting

The Colorado shooting suspect purchased an assault weapon 6 days before the shooting, according to court documents released Tuesday. The arrest affidavit for the suspect said he purchased a Ruger AR-556 pistol on March 16. 

It's not yet clear if that pistol was used in the shooting. According to the affidavit, the suspect had left a rifle — "possibly" an AR-15 — and a semiautomatic handgun in the store. 

The wife of one of the suspect's brothers told authorities that the suspect was seen playing with a gun that looked like a "machine gun" two days ago, according to the affidavit. She did not provide more details about the type of gun. 

Boulder shooting suspect bought semiautomatic rifle just 6 days before the attack 06:54
By Victoria Albert

"Truly one of a kind": Family mourns shooting victim

The family of Rikki Olds, one of the victims of the shooting, issued a statement Tuesday commemorating her as a loving, hard-working person who was "truly one of a kind." 

The statement described Olds, 25, as "a type of person who would always be there for you," adding, "She'd embrace you and give you confidence to be the person you want to be." 

The statement said Olds was devoted to her career at King Soopers, and that she "strived to be the best manager she could be to her work family." 

"She had the tenacity and big dreams to make a great life for herself and to help others along the way," the family said.  

Rikki Olds, one of the victims of the shooting at a supermarket in on March 22, 2021, in Boulder, Colorado. Handout via Olds Family
By Victoria Albert

Memorials built to remember victims

In the aftermath of the shooting, residents have lined a fence put up around the parking lot of the King Soopers store with flowers to honor the victims.  

Supermarket Shooting
A mourner leaves a bouquet of flowers along a fence put up around the parking lot where a mass shooting took place in a King Soopers grocery store Tuesday, March 23, 2021, in Boulder, Colorado. David Zalubowski / AP

Residents are also leaving flowers around a police cruiser parked in front of the Boulder Police Department to honor Eric Talley, the police officer who was killed during the shooting.

Supermarket Shooting
Residents leave bouquets on a police cruiser parked outside the Boulder Police Department after an officer was one of the victims of a mass shooting at a King Soopers grocery store Tuesday, March 23, 2021, in Boulder, Colorado. David Zalubowski / AP
By Victoria Albert

Kroger says 3 store employees died in the shooting

Kroger, the supermarket chain that owns King Soopers, said three employees died during the shooting: Denny Stong, Rikki Olds, and Teri Leiker.

"The entire Kroger family offers our thoughts, prayers and support to those impacted by this tragedy, including our associates, customers and first responders, and their Families," the company said.

Kroger also highlighted "truly heroic acts that included associates, customers and first responders selflessly helping to protect and save others."

"We will remain forever grateful to the first responders who so bravely responded to protect our associates and customers," the company said.

By Victoria Albert

"I knew something was wrong": Man who documented shooting speaks out

Millions watched Dean Schiller's live stream as he documented the shooting with an unflinching eye.

"When did it become clear to you something was very wrong?" CBS News asked. 

"As soon as I saw the body," Schiller said.

He had just left the King Soopers ahead of his friend Denny Stong, who was still paying for his lunch at the register. While filming, Schiller didn't know that Stong would be among the victims.

"He was a really smart kid. He was training to be an airline pilot who wanted to be a commercial airline pilot — that was his dream," Schiller said.

Family and friends mourn victims of Boulder mass shooting 02:13
By Jonathan Vigliotti

Suspect released from the hospital

The suspected gunman, Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, has been released from the hospital and taken into the custody of local police, according to a Boulder Community Health spokesperson. 

Alissa, 21, was hospitalized after he was struck by gunfire in the leg as police responded to the shooting Monday, officials said. 

By Zoe Christen Jones

Suspect previously charged with assault

The suspected gunman, Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, had previously been charged with third-degree assault, a misdemeanor, back in 2017, according to law enforcement records obtained by CBS News. 

The records show Alissa pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 48 hours of community service and two months of probation.

By Jordan Freiman

Victim's daughter says dad "represents all things Love"

Kevin Mahoney's daughter said she was grateful her hero could walk her down the aisle last summer. "My dad represents all things Love," Erika Mahoney said on Twitter Tuesday.

Mahoney posted two pictures of her and her father walking arm in arm, including one of her looking up at him as he looked ahead. She said she was now pregnant.

"I know he wants me to be strong for his granddaughter," Mahoney said before thanking the Boulder police for "being so kind through this painful tragedy."

She ended her string of tweets with a message to her father: "I love you forever Dad. You are always with me."

By Alex Sundby

Senators debate gun control in hearing

A Senate hearing on gun violence highlighted the significant disagreements between Democrats and Republicans on the best ways to prevent mass shootings and reduce firearm deaths.

Judiciary Committee Chair Dick Durbin began the hearing by saying that he could ask for a moment of silence to commemorate the victims of the latest shooting, but what he wants is a moment of action.

"We are Senate leaders. What are we doing? What are we doing other than reflecting and praying?" Durbin said. "We're not going to agree on every proposal, but if we share a commitment to reduce gun deaths, some proposal will work."

But Republicans argued that Democrats were using the shootings as an excuse to try to limit access to firearms. Senator Ted Cruz called the hearing "ridiculous theater" and insisted that gun control proposals from Democrats are "a bunch of laws that would do nothing to stop these murders."

Read more here

By Grace Segers

Authorities identify all 10 people killed in shooting

During a press conference Tuesday morning, authorities released the names and ages of all 10 victims from Monday's shooting. They are:

  • Tralona Bartkowiak, 49
  • Suzanne Fountain, 59
  • Teri Leiker, 51
  • Kevin Mahoney, 61
  • Lynn Murray, 62
  • Rikki Olds, 25
  • Neven Stanisic, 23
  • Denny Stong, 20
  • Officer Eric Talley, 51
  • Jody Waters, 65
By Alex Sundby

Biden calls on Senate to close background check loophole

Biden speaks on Boulder shooting and need for "common sense" gun laws 05:53

President Biden called for the Senate to swiftly pass two measures approved by the House that would expand background checks. "This is not and should not be a partisan issue. This is an American issue," Mr. Biden said before leaving the White House for Ohio. "It will save lives, American lives, and we have to act."

The president appealed directly to the U.S. Senate, urging it to "immediately" approve two bills passed by the House with bipartisan support this month that expand background checks on firearm sales.

"That's one of the best tools we have right now to prevent gun violence," he said of closing the loopholes in the background check system.

Mr. Biden further called for a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines.

Read more here

By Melissa Quinn

"Another American city has been scarred by gun violence"

President Biden said he and first lady Jill Biden were "devastated" by the Boulder shooting. "Less than a week after the horrific murders of eight people and the assault on the AAPI community in Georgia, while the flag was still flying half-staff for the tragedy, another American city has been scarred by gun violence and the resulting trauma," the president said at the White House.

By Alex Sundby

Suspect charged with 10 counts of murder

During a press conference Tuesday morning, Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold said the suspect, identified as Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, 21, has been charged with 10 counts of murder in the first degree. Herold said the suspect was in stable condition at a hospital.

Boulder shooting suspect Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa Boulder Police Department
By Alex Sundby

"Enough is enough": Colorado leaders share condolences and anger

Colorado Rep. Neguse says enough is enough after mass shooting in Boulder, calls for gun reform 05:05

Colorado Governor Jared Polis and other elected leaders have tweeted about the shooting in Boulder, offering condolences and expressing anger. Polis said late Monday he is grieving with all Coloradans and that "Today we saw the face of evil." 

State Representative Tom Sullivan also shared his condolences for victims and their families and indignation for the events. Sullivan lost his son in the Aurora theater shooting in 2012. "Simply don't have the words and doing all I can to maintain the strength I will need to get through this day. We don't have to live like this. We must do more!" he tweeted.

Representative Joe Neguse, who is seated in the Boulder district, shared sharp words for the continued tragedy Americans endure.

"Twenty-one years ago, as a young student in Douglas County, I joined many Coloradans in weeping for the victims of the terrible massacre at Columbine High ten minutes from my high school. Two years ago, I felt the fear that so many Coloradans experienced learning of the shooting at the STEM School in Highlands Ranch, where my niece — a kindergartner — was locked down, as we all wept at the tragic loss of life. And tonight, I weep for the families of my constituents, who have tragically lost their lives in yet another mass shooting."

"Enough is enough," he said, in part.

"Americans should feel safe in their grocery stores. They should feel safe in their schools, their movie theaters and in their communities. While Congress dithers on enacting meaningful gun violence prevention measures, Americans — and Coloradans — are being murdered before our very eyes — day after day, year after year."

It doesn't have to be this way. There are steps we can take — and must take — to protect our community; common-sense, broadly supported proposals that will save lives. If we are truly invested in saving lives, then we must have the willpower to act and to pass meaningful gun reform. The time for inaction is over."

Read more here.


Witness describes beginning of shooting

Boulder police officer among 10 dead in Colorado supermarket shooting, suspect in custody 04:25

Anna Haynes lives directly across from the supermarket where Monday's shooting took place, and she said she witnessed the beginning of the shooting from her window.

"He was on one of the handicap ramps going up to the entrance of the King Soopers, and he was shooting down at something, which I believe was another person, and after he was done shooting, he ran inside the building," Haynes said.

By Omar Villafranca

Heartbreaking tweet from slain officer's sister

Officer Eric Talley's sister Kirstin took to Twitter Monday night to express her profound grief. Talley, a father of seven, is the Boulder officer killed in the mass shooting in a supermarket Monday.

Kirstin said, "Officer Eric Talley is my big brother. He died today in the Boulder shooting. My heart is broken. I cannot explain how beautiful he was and what a devastating loss this is to so many. Fly high my sweet brother. You always wanted to be a pilot (damn color blindness). Soar."

By Brian Dakss

Police procession for officer killed in Colorado supermarket shooting

Police procession for officer killed in Colorado supermarket shooting 07:18

A police procession was held Monday night for Officer Eric Talley, who was among the 10 people killed in a supermarket shooting in Boulder, Colorado. Watch part of the procession here.


Slain police officer leaves behind seven children

Police officer Eric Talley was the first to respond when a gunman opened fire at a Boulder, Colorado, supermarket on Monday afternoon. The 51-year-old father of seven was one of 10 people killed in the mass shooting.

Talley rushed to the scene of a King Soopers supermarket around 2:30 p.m. and was fatally shot, Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold said during a news conference. The 51-year-old had been with the department since 2010, serving in numerous roles. 

Herold called his quick response at the scene "heroic."

"I'm grateful for the police officers that responded, and I am so sorry about the loss of Officer Talley," she said, holding back tears. 

Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty said Talley's life was "cut much too short," and said a "painstaking investigation is already underway."

He described Talley as "one of the outstanding officers of the Boulder Police Department."

Read more here.

By Sophie Lewis
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