Gunman breaks into Colorado Supreme Court building; intrusion unrelated to Trump case, police say

Jan 2, 2024, 9:18 AM

DENVER (AP) — A man leaving the scene of a car wreck Tuesday shot his way into the Colorado Supreme Court building and inflicted “extensive damage” to the building before being arrested by police, authorities said, adding the incident seems unrelated to the court’s recent ruling banning former President Donald Trump from the ballot.

Colorado’s justices have received threats ever since they ruled 4-3 last month that a rarely-used constitutional provision barring from office those who “engaged in insurrection” applies to Trump. Authorities, however, said Tuesday’s incident appears unrelated to that case. Trump is expected to appeal that ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court later Tuesday.

“The CSP and DPD are treating this incident seriously, but at this time, it is believed that this is not associated with previous threats to the Colorado Supreme Court Justices,” the Colorado State Patrol said in a statement said, using the acronyms for the state patrol and Denver Police Department.

The car wreck occurred just by the building in downtown Denver at 1:15 a.m., after which one driver pointed a handgun at the other, according to the statement from state patrol, which oversees security at the building. The gunman then shot his way through a window at the Supreme Court building shortly thereafter and entered, authorities said.

The statement did not identify the gunman, but said he held up an unarmed security guard and got a key that let him into the rest of the building. He made his way to the seventh floor, where he fired further shots and then called 911 at 3 a.m.

The gunman voluntarily surrendered to police and there were no injuries to other people, the statement says.

Several hours after the crash a large shattered window could be seen on the ground floor of the building, with glass spilled out on the sidewalk along a busy street downtown. A state patrol trooper guarded it.

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Gunman breaks into Colorado Supreme Court building; intrusion unrelated to Trump case, police say