10 killed in Colorado grocery store shooting

By Melissa Macaya, Mike Hayes, Meg Wagner, Melissa Mahtani and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 9:58 PM ET, Tue March 23, 2021
29 Posts
Sort byDropdown arrow
12:43 p.m. ET, March 23, 2021

Shooting compounds trauma already felt by grocery workers during pandemic, union president says

From CNN's Adrienne Vogt

Grocery workers — who already showed heroism throughout the Covid-19 pandemic — were heroes during the Colorado mass shooting, said Kim Cordova, president of UFCW Local 7. The union represents grocery store employees, including those in the King Soopers supermarket in Boulder, where 10 people died on Monday. 

“These grocery workers have been through so much over this last year dealing with Covid. You know, customers, the mask issue — it's been really rough for these employees. … They were heroes throughout this whole pandemic and they were heroes during this incident,” Cordova told CNN’s Kate Bolduan.

“Everybody's really traumatized. There is a lot of shock,” she added. 

Rikki Olds, 25, has been identified as one of the victims killed in Monday’s shooting at the supermarket. She was a front-end manager at King Soopers, according to her uncle. Olds was a member of the union in another store but transferred over to the nonunion side of the Boulder store, according to Cordova. 

Olds was “very nice, very friendly, very caring,” Cordova said. “She was always happy, just a really great person.” 

Cordova said she believes there are several other employees who died during the shooting, but did not comment further as the investigation is ongoing.


12:32 p.m. ET, March 23, 2021

Obama says it's "long past time for those with power to fight this epidemic of gun violence"

From Betsy Klein and Kevin Liptak

Joe Raedle/Getty Images
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Former President Barack Obama put out a statement calling for those in power to address gun violence in the wake of the deadly shooting in Boulder, Colorado.

His statement comes moments ahead of President Biden’s expected remarks on the matter from the White House.

In the statement Obama says:

“It is long past time for those with the power to fight this epidemic of gun violence to do so. It will take time to root out the disaffection, racism and misogyny that fuels so many of these senseless acts of violence. But we can make it harder for those with hate in their hearts to buy weapons of war. We can overcome opposition by cowardly politicians and the pressure of a gun lobby that opposes any limit on the ability of anyone to assemble an arsenal. We can, and we must.”

12:21 p.m. ET, March 23, 2021

Search of Boulder shooting suspect's home turned up weapons, source says

From CNN’s Whitney Wild

A search of Boulder shooting suspect Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa’s home turned up other weapons, a senior law enforcement source tells CNN. 

The official also updated the description previously given of the weapon used in the killings. The source describes the weapon as an AR-15-style pistol that had been modified with an arm brace.

12:21 p.m. ET, March 23, 2021

Losing community members in supermarket shooting is "indescribable," says man working near store

From CNN's Adrienne Vogt

Mason Alexander was working at a tattoo parlor near the King Soopers supermarket in Boulder, Colorado, when the shooting occurred yesterday, leaving 10 dead

Alexander and his coworkers locked themselves and their customers inside. He said he is still shaken up from it. 

 “We have become a bit desensitized to the shootings in America. But for it to happen right outside of your front door, you know, 500 feet from where you perform your everyday activities … it is shocking. It is scary. It is something I wouldn't wish anybody to have to go through. … I’m lost for words,” he told CNN’s Poppy Harlow. 

Alexander said it is difficult to know how to deal with mass shootings in the US, but it’s “heartbreaking” and something needs to be done.

“It's a hard situation to deal with. … I’m not an elected official. I'm not a politician. But I am an American. And living in America right now is incredibly difficult,” he said.

“Me sitting here from a place of privilege as well, you know, it's just difficult to know what to do. We live in a divided country. A lot of people, you know, disagree on a lot of things, so it makes it hard to make progress. I just wish we could kind of look at what is really important, and that’s definitely the lives of everybody. We want to make sure that the lives of people are protected and, you know, we don't have these senseless acts of violence,” he said.  

To “have fellow community members have their lives taken from them, it's indescribable,” he added. 


1:04 p.m. ET, March 23, 2021

Police just gave an update on the Colorado grocery store shooting. Here's what we learned.

Police, lawmakers and other officials this morning held a news conference following yesterday's deadly shooting at King Soopers supermarket in Boulder, Colorado.

If you're just reading in now, here's what we learned about the victims, the suspect and the investigation:

  • All 10 victims identified: Police read the names of the 10 people killed in the shooting aloud at the news conference. They are: Denny Stong, 20; Neven Stanisic, 23; Rikki Olds, 25; Tralona Bartkowiak, 49; Suzanne Fountain, 59; Teri Leiker, 51; Officer Eric Talley, 51; Kevin Mahoney, 61; Lynn Murray, 62 and Jody Waters, 65.
  • A suspect is charged with 10 counts of murder: Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold identified the suspect as Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, 21 of Arvada, a suburb of Denver, Colorado. She said he has been "charged with 10 counts of murder in the first degree and will be shortly transported to Boulder county jail."
  • There's no motive yet: Herold said investigators have spoken to the suspect but that they can’t say what his motive may have been at this point.
  • More about the slain officer: Herold said just weeks ago, Officer Eric Talley and family were in her office for an award ceremony for one of his sons, who was honored for saving the life of one of his siblings by performing CPR.

Correction: An earlier version of this post misspelled victim Denny Stong's last name based on information provided by the Boulder Police Department.

11:36 a.m. ET, March 23, 2021

President Biden will deliver remarks on Boulder shooting this afternoon

From CNN's Betsy Klein

President Biden will deliver remarks on the Boulder shooting Tuesday before departing for Columbus, Ohio, the White House said in a statement. 

“The President will give brief remarks on the tragedy in Boulder before departing for Ohio this afternoon. We will update the pool with timing on the remarks. He has been receiving regular updates and will continue to be briefed throughout the morning,” the statement said. 


Biden has also “directed that all flags at the White House be flown at half staff,” per the statement. 

Ten people were killed Monday in Boulder, just days after eight were killed in a series of shootings in the Atlanta area. 

Biden is set to depart the White House at 1 p.m. ET.

11:43 a.m. ET, March 23, 2021

Boulder shooting victim was "a shining light in this dark world," uncle says

From CNN’s Alisha Ebrahimji

Shooting victim, Rikki Olds, with her uncle, Bob Olds.
Shooting victim, Rikki Olds, with her uncle, Bob Olds. Bob Olds

Rikki Olds has been identified by both police in Boulder, Colorado, and her family as one of the victims killed in Monday’s shooting at the King Soopers supermarket.

Bob Olds tells CNN that his 25-year-old niece, Rikki, lived in Lafayette, Colorado. She was a “strong, independent young woman” who was raised by her grandparents, said Olds.

Rikki was a front-end manager at the King Soopers, according to her uncle.

“She was so energetic and charismatic and she was a shining light in this dark world,” he told CNN. 

Bob said he was trying to get details and finally found out she was gone at 3 a.m. Tuesday morning “after calls to the police department and every local hospital and the coroner’s office we finally received a call back from the coroner’s office.” 

“Unbelievable that we had to wait and agonize over her fate for several hours,” he said.

11:42 a.m. ET, March 23, 2021

Ted Cruz announces he's reintroducing legislation to strengthen background checks

From CNN's Christina Carrega

Texas Senator Ted Cruz speaks during a hearing on gun violence in Washington, DC, on March 23.
Texas Senator Ted Cruz speaks during a hearing on gun violence in Washington, DC, on March 23. Pool

Texas GOP senator Ted Cruz announced he is reintroducing legislation that would implement stronger background checks before purchasing a firearm. 

During Cruz's opening remarks on Tuesday for the "Constitutional and Common Sense Steps to Reduce Gun Violence" hearing, he said he has been trying to pass legislation since 2013 that would target "violent criminals," felons, fugitives and "those with serious mental disease to stop them from getting firearms to put them in prison, when they try to illegally buy guns." 

​Cruz said the bill did not pass before because of a "shameful filibuster" that was led by Democrats. He said that combatting gun violence should not take guns away from law abiding citizens. 

"I would ask Senate Democrats, including some of our newer colleagues who just got here, not to participate again in the shameful filibuster, that this body engaged in in 2013, let's target the bad guys the felons the fugitives those with mental disease. Let's put them in jail, let's stop them from getting guns, let's not scapegoat innocent law-abiding citizens and let's not target their constitutional rights," Cruz said.

"Every year firearms are used in a defensive capacity to defend women, children, families, roughly a million times a year in the United States. And the Democrats who want to take away the guns from those potential victims would create more victims of crimes, not less," Cruz said. 

Cruz says he will not apologize for offering "thoughts or prayers" after another act of gun violence happens in the country but agrees that action is needed.

11:34 a.m. ET, March 23, 2021

Boulder Police honored slain officer's family just weeks ago after one of his sons saved a sibling's life

From CNN's Maureen Chowdhury

Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold spoke of slain officer Eric Talley and his dedication to the department and to his family.

"This officer had seven children, ages five to 18 ... I just had that officer's whole family in my office a few weeks ago to give him an award," Herold said.

She said Talley and family were in her office for an award ceremony for one of his children, who was honored for saving the life of one of his siblings by performing CPR.

"He taught his family CPR. And Officer Talley — one of his sons swallowed a quarter, and because Officer Talley taught his children CPR, one of his sons was able to save the little boy's life. And so the Boulder Police Department just gave his son an award for life-saving," Herold explained.

Herold went on to remember the legacy of Talley.

"He's a very kind man. He didn't have to go into policing. He had a profession before this, but he felt a higher calling. And he loved this community. And he's everything that policing deserves and needs. He cared about this community. He cared about Boulder police department. He cared about his family. And he was willing to die to protect others," she said.

Watch Boulder police chief recall giving slain officer's son an award recently: