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21-Year-Old Charged in Boulder Massacre

Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa charged with 10 counts of murder; victims ranged in age from 20 to 65
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 23, 2021 11:00 AM CDT

(Newser) – Police in Boulder have identified the suspected gunman in Monday's mass shooting, though they're still not speculating about a motive. The alleged shooter at the King Soopers supermarket is 21-year-old Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa from nearby Arvada, Colo., report the Washington Post and the Denver Post. Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty says Alissa, who's been charged with 10 counts of murder, has lived most of his life in the US. Police say the victims—including a police officer with seven children—range in age from 20 to 65. More:

  • Victims: In addition to officer Eric Talley, 51, the victims are Denny Strong, 20; Neven Stanisic, 23; Rikki Olds, 25; Tralona Bartkowiak, 49; Suzanne Fountain, 59; Teri Leiker, 51; Kevin Mahoney, 61; Lynn Murray, 62; and Jody Waters, 65.
  • What happened: In Tuesday's briefing, Police Chief Maris Herold says officers were dispatched to the supermarket about 2:40pm. "They arrived on the scene within minutes and immediately entered the store and engaged the suspect," she says, per CNN. "There was an exchange of gunfire. The suspect was shot and a number of other officers were injured." The suspect was hit in the leg and hospitalized but is expected to be transferred to the county jail soon.
  • Safe: The FBI is assisting in the investigation and says the inquiry into the shooter's motive is "ongoing." But Special Agent Michael Schneider added that the "community is safe."

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  • Weapon: Police haven't yet publicly identified the weapon used, but the AP and other outlets are reporting that it was an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle.
  • Timing: The shooting comes about a week after a judge blocked the city from enforcing a ban on assault weapons and large-capacity magazines, reports the Denver Post. In fact, the Week notes that the NRA celebrated the ruling in a tweet on March 16.
  • Debate: "It's so tragic to see the legislation struck down, and days later, to have our city experience exactly what we were trying to prevent," the co-founder of the gun-control group Blue Rising tells the Washington Post. But the Colorado State Shooting Association warns against "emotional sensationalism" in the immediate aftermath of the shooting: "There will be a time for the debate on gun laws. There will be a time for the discussion on motives. There will be a time for a conversation on how this could have been prevented. But today is not the time."
(Read more Boulder shooting stories.)

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