Club Q shooting suspect Anderson Lee Aldrich’s violent tendencies forced terrified relatives into a “virtual prison,” and last year he began building untraceable ghost guns at home using a 3D printer, according to court filings unsealed late Thursday.
Aldrich, 22, has been charged with 305 counts of first-degree murder, attempted murder, and bias crimes for a Nov. 19 massacre that left five dead and nearly two dozen wounded. Aldrich’s lawyers say he identifies as non-binary. However, Aldrich is listed as male in police booking records, and The Daily Beast reviewed text messages sent by Aldrich’s mother the day of the shooting in which she refers to them using male pronouns.
On June 18, 2021, Aldrich was arrested after a standoff with police at their mother’s home in Colorado Springs, during which they allegedly held her hostage and threatened to blow up the building.
Aldrich was upset that his grandparents, who lived just down the street, were moving to Florida. The grandparents had “been living in fear due to Anderson’s recent homicidal threats towards them and others,” states a police affidavit from the case, which was part of a new tranche of Club Q-related documents released last night by the Colorado Judicial Branch.
That day, Pamela Pullen, Aldrich’s grandmother, told police Aldrich pointed a Glock handgun at her and Aldrich’s grandfather and said, “You guys die today, and I’m taking you with me. I’m loaded and ready.” She claimed Aldrich told her that the move to Florida would “interfere with his plans to conduct a mass shooting and bombing,” according to the affidavit.
Aldrich, who the affidavit says was “chugging vodka” during the incident, showed Pullen “a box with chemicals in it and stated it was a bomb… powerful enough to blow up a police department and a federal building,” the affidavit alleges, adding that the two “begged for their lives and promised Anderson they wouldn’t move.” Aldrich’s mom and grandparents managed to flee to safety, and Aldrich eventually surrendered to a SWAT team outside. Cops later discovered “items consistent with bomb making materials” in the basement, the affidavit states.A few months later, Aldrich’s uncle sent a Colorado judge a letter, which was included in Thursday night’s document dump.
In it, Robert Pullen Jr. pleaded with the judge to keep Aldrich behind bars, saying he is “certain that if Anderson is freed that he will hurt or murder my brother and his wife.”
Pullen, a retired plasterer living in Hawaii, said in the letter that Aldrich treated others with “no respect,” and that Aldrich had always been homeschooled “because he could not get along with any of his classmates.” An attack by Aldrich once put Jonathan Pullen—Pamela’s husband and Aldrich’s grandfather—in the hospital, the letter says, before noting that Jonathan “lied to the doctors at the ER” about how it happened because he was “afraid of Anderson’s anger if he was picked up by the police.”
Aldrich “punched holes in the walls” of their mother’s home, and broke windows and locks, according to the letter. Jonathan Pullen began locking his bedroom door and sleeping with a baseball bat next to the bed because he and his wife were so scared of Aldrich, it says.
The police had been called to the house many times prior, but Aldrich was never held for longer than 72 hours, Pullen wrote. Aldrich’s grandmother would “not let him be taken.”
After Aldrich’s arrest, the letter says Pamela Pullen told her husband that she “had given [Aldrich] $30,000 recently, much of which went to his purchase of two 3D printers—on which he was making guns. One of which arrived at the house after his arrest and was returned.”
But the bomb threat case fell apart because none of the family, including Aldrich’s grandmother, would testify, prosecutors confirmed Thursday. (Colorado law prevents prosecutors from speaking about cases involving dropped charges unless they’re sealed.)
Still, certain remedies were available in the wake of Aldrich’s increasingly disturbing actions. Authorities said police seized Aldrich’s guns after his arrest for the bomb threat. However, they did not then utilize Colorado’s “red flag” law by filing an Extreme Risk Protection Order to prevent Aldrich from obtaining or possessing firearms in the future, Colorado Public Radio reported.
A former neighbor of Aldrich’s told Newsy last month that Aldrich owned an assault rifle and had used a 3D printer to make a custom magazine and stock for it.
One of the weapons Aldrich allegedly used in the Club Q shooting was a so-called ghost gun, according to sources cited by local outlet KDVR. User-made firearms are referred to as “ghost guns” because they do not have serial numbers and can’t be traced.
Aldrich is being held without bond, and is scheduled to appear back in court in February. If convicted, he faces life in prison.