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A tumultuous past surrounds the suspect in the Colorado Springs Q Club shooting

2022-11-24T13:38:05.497Z

He had a fractured family life, according to his father. The motive for the shooting that claimed five lives remains unclear.



By Erik Ortiz -

NBC News

As legal proceedings begin against the 22-year-old arrested in the shooting at a Colorado Springs LGBTQ club, who has already made his first court appearance on Wednesday and has been ordered held without bail, they are slowly pieces of his past emerging, pointing to a volatile upbringing and fractured home life.

His father testified Tuesday in an interview with San Diego's KFMB television network that he believed he had committed suicide several years ago and found out this year that he had not.

[The Latino who arrested the gay bar shooter in Colorado Springs wanted to defend his family.

"I'm no hero," he says]

Aaron Brink told the news station that he had mourned the loss and had been through a crisis.

Brink said his ex-wife told him in 2016 that Aldrich had died.

Aldrich was born Nicholas Franklin Brink before a name change petition was filed in 2016. (In a court filing Tuesday, Aldrich's defense team referred to the suspected person as "Mx. Aldrich," noting in notes footnote that his client

identifies as non-binary and

uses the pronouns elle/elles. There were no further details, and Aldrich's defense attorneys could not immediately be reached for comment on Wednesday.)

According to court documents filed in Bexar County, Texas, the name change was requested because Aldrich, who was turning 16, "wishes to protect himself and his future from any connection to the biological father and his criminal record." .

The father has had no contact with the minor for several years.”

The request was first reported by The Washington Post.

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At the time, Aldrich was living in Texas with grandparents and legal guardians, Pamela and Jonathan Pullen.

He could not reach either man for comment on Wednesday.

Aldrich's mother, Laura Voepel, also lived in Texas.

Efforts to contact her were also unsuccessful.

Brink, 48, said he only found out Aldrich was still alive after receiving a phone call from him six months ago.

They both argued.

He told KFMB that Aldrich was "in a state of anger with me" and "wanted to poke the old man."

The former MMA fighter who later starred in pornographic films recalled his ex-wife saying Aldrich sought a name change because Brink was associated with the porn industry and also appeared in a 2009 episode of the A&E docuseries

Intervention

.

In the episode, Brink says that he is addicted to methamphetamine and is shown using drugs before his family members encourage him to seek treatment.

The show depicts Brink's troubled childhood, including his parents' divorce and his arrest at age 21 for smuggling marijuana into the United States from Mexico.

He served three years in federal prison.

Brink said he divorced Aldrich's mother shortly after her son was born.

Neither Voepel nor Aldrich are mentioned in the

Intervention

episode .

[They accuse the detainee of the shooting in a gay club in Colorado of hate crimes]

Brink's criminal record also includes convictions for assaulting the suspect's mother, both before and after Aldrich's birth, The Associated Press reported.

A 2002 misdemeanor assault conviction in California led to a protective order that initially prohibited Brink from contacting Voepel and Aldrich except through an attorney, but was later amended to allow supervised visitation with Aldrich, according to AP.

Brink told KFMB that it was he who taught his son to fight.

He said he praised Aldrich “for his really early violent behavior,” adding that he also said “it works.

It is instant and you will get immediate results.”

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Brink said Voepel and Aldrich moved to Colorado around 2012.

She added that she was surprised Aldrich had been at Club Q, where authorities say the shooter killed five people and wounded 19 others with a semi-automatic rifle on Saturday, because she didn't believe her son had gone to an LGBTQ establishment in the first place. place

because the family is Mormon

.

[Who are they and what do we know about the victims of the shooting in a gay club in Colorado]

A spokesperson for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints told our sister network, NBC News, that Aldrich is on the membership rolls, but

has not been active for more than a decade

.

“There is no excuse to go kill people.

If you're killing people, there's something wrong.

It's not the answer," Brink said.

The motive for the shooting remains unclear.

Aldrich has been charged with five counts of first degree murder and five counts of committing those hate crimes.

The suspect was subdued by at least two people inside the club.

Prosecutor Michael Allen said Aldrich, who appeared in court via video with injuries to his face, was "physically competent" to stand trial.

The next hearing was scheduled for December 6.

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After the trial, Allen refused to answer questions from reporters regarding another case involving Aldrich.

Aldrich was arrested last year after Voepel said he threatened her with a pipe bomb and other weapons.

Video obtained by The Associated Press shows Aldrich arriving at Voepel's door with a large black bag on the day of the 2021 bomb threat, telling him police were nearby, adding: “This is where I am.

Today I die”.

Authorities said at the time that no explosives were found, but gun control advocates have questioned

why police didn't use Colorado's “red flag” laws

to seize the guns the mother said Aldrich had.

Brink said he feels remorse for letting Aldrich down and only learned of Aldrich's alleged involvement in the shooting when a defense attorney contacted him.

Brink told KFMB that he loved Aldrich "no matter what" and

asked people to "please forgive him

. "

Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2022-11-24

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