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Shooter Accused of Killing 5 LGBTQ+ Members and Threatening Lives of Several Others Pleaded Guilty in Justice Court

The accused had pleaded guilty after initial denial

The recent development in the supposed “hate crime” case against the LGBTQ+ community in California took a new turn this Tuesday. On 16th January, the alleged culprit Anderson Aldrich had come into the justice court and pleaded guilty under the new laws of federal regarding violent acts related to hate crimes and misuse of firearms. 

The unfortunate night at the club

Anderson, now 23, was accused of violating the worry free and peaceful environment of a LGBTQ+ club in California. The club, called Club Q, was considered the safe haven for transgender people and drag queens due to the inclusive nature of the club and the friendly staff. The unfortunate night of 19th November, 2022 changed all of that as the club witnessed bloodbath of multiple members. 

According to the eye witnesses, Anderson was a frequent visitor of the club and he had at least been to the club six times before the fateful night. Anderson claimed to be a non-binary member while he entered the club, though during the trial he could not present any solid proof that proves the statement. He and his friends were hanging out before they went out for a while.

Club Q

When they returned, they were dressed in body armor. All of a sudden, shocking everybody present at the club, Anderson took out an AR-15-style rifle and randomly started rapid firing. 5 people were shot dead at the spot and several members were critically injured. All the members ran to find covers as their life seemed to be at stake. 

The charges pressed against Anderson 

Anderson kept firing till one of the navy officers, who was attending the club that night, held the gun by the barrel and burnt Anederson’s hand. After that, he sabotaged Anderson with the help of other people present there and restrained him until the police and emergency medical care arrived at the spot. Anderson was immediately taken into police custody and was charged with hate crimes against LGBTQ+ community, abuse of firearms, 5 first-degree murders and 46 cases of attempted murders, one for each of the person present there that night. 

Anderson in yellow shirt

Reasons of suddenly changing the decision

Initially Anderson denied involvement of any hatred against LGBTQ+ community. Many believed that he had tried to do that to avoid the death penalty. He also said that he and his friends were apparently using a “plethora of drugs” that night and they were also abusing steroids when the incident happened. He claimed that the shooting took place due to his intoxicated state and he did not intentionally do any of this. 

Several bystanders speculated that Anderson initially pleaded innocent and later flipped his decision due to the new development in the federal laws regarding the hate crimes and firearm violence. He had pleaded guilty so that he could avoid the death penalty and instead would be served a life time prison instead. Currently, with the charges he is facing, he can expect multiple life sentences along with a 190-year-sentence due to the heinous crimes he had carried out. Several victims were present in the court to witness the final hearing and many of them went home displeased with the decision. 

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