Ten people were killed Monday, March 22, when a gunman opened fire in a King Soopers grocery store in Boulder, Colorado. In a press conference on Tuesday morning, police said the suspect, being treated at the hospital, has been “charged with 10 counts of murder in the first degree and will be shortly transported to Boulder County jail.” Officers also released the names of the 10 victims. According to the New York Times, victims include King Sooper employees Rikki Olds, Terri Leiker, and Danny Strong, as well as Lynn Murray, a recent retiree who was at the grocery store fulfilling an order for Instacart, and Eric Talley, the police officer who was first to arrive on the scene.
Officers have not speculated on the shooter’s motive; one shopper told the Denver Post that “[h]e just came in and started shooting.” In a statement, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis said, “This year we have all been surrounded by loss of life, illness and isolation, and the deep grief that has accompanied the loss of life as we knew it. As spring sprung this weekend, and vaccines continue to get into arms, lightness creeped back in only for the darkness to descend on us again today. Today we saw the face of evil. I am grieving with my community and all Coloradans.”
National politicians have also spoken out against the violence. Vice President Kamala Harris said of the shooting, “It’s absolutely baffling, it’s 10 people going about their day living their lives, not bothering anybody. A police officer who is performing his duties, and with great courage and heroism.” “Another American city has been scarred by gun violence and the resulting trauma,” stated President Joe Biden, calling for new gun control legislation. Boulder outlawed assault weapons in 2018 after the high school shooting in Parkland, Florida; the ban was blocked in court 11 days ago.
In a statement the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) spoke of the bravery of the 32 grocery store workers on shift during the shooting. “We are deeply thankful to the grocery workers, customers, and first responders whose courageous actions helped to prevent even more lives from being lost,” said UFCW International president Marc Perrone, and he urged local leaders to investigate the shooting. “The victims and their families deserve answers and need to know that our leaders are doing all they can to prevent future tragedies like this from endangering even more of our country’s brave essential workers.”