(DENVER) – A man accused of killing 5 people during a rampage in Denver is said to have written self-published fictional books online that name some of his real-life victims and describe similar attacks.
Denver police spokesman Doug Schepman said the posts were part of an investigation into what led to Lyndon James McLeod’s shooting, which unfolded in less than an hour Monday at several locations. points around the metro area.
Police said McLeod, 47, knew most of the people he shot through business or personal relationships. Four of those shot were attacked at tattoo shops. In addition to those killed, two other people were injured, including a police officer who shot and killed McLeod after being hit by a bullet.
In the first novel, written under the pen name Roman McClay, a character named Lyndon stalks a poker party hosted by a character named “Michael Swinyard” and gains access to a building near Cheesman Park by pretending to be a police officer. He then shoots everyone at the party and robs them before fleeing with his dog in a van.
During Monday’s attack, 67-year-old Michael Swinyard was fatally shot at a home near Denver’s Cheesman Park, police said.
In her second novel, which also features a character named Lyndon, McClay calls Alicia Cardenas a victim. The book also mentions the tattoo parlor she owns, Sol Tribe.
Alicia Cardenas, a 44-year-old tattoo artist, was one of his first victims in Monday’s rampage. Police said she was killed at her tattoo parlor along with another woman, Alyssa Gunn, 35. A man who was also injured there may have survived. He was identified by friends and clients as Gunn’s husband, James Maldonado, a piercer there.
That shop was less than a mile (1.6 km) from the tattoo shop McLeod had listed as a tenant from 2014 to 2016. Cardenas then took over it before relocating the shop to the location. currently, city records show.
According to city records, McLeod was not licensed to act as a tattoo artist or operate a tattoo business in Denver according to city records, said a spokesman for Denver’s licensing agency, Eric Escudero , said Wednesday.
Cardenas, who has a 12-year-old daughter, describes herself as a “proud native artist” who has also painted murals.
Denver Police Chief Paul Pazen said at a news conference Tuesday that McLeod was in the sights of law enforcement and was under investigation in both 2020 and 2021. He declined to say McLeod was under investigation. investigated for whatever reason but said charges were not filed against him.
Matt Clark, commander of the Denver Police Department’s Major Crime Division, said McLeod knew most of the people he targeted but was not the last person he shot – an employee in a hotel in the shopping district. Shop Lakewood’s Belmar. However, McLeod has had some dealings with the hotel, Clark said.
Hotel employee Sarah Steck, 28, died of her injuries on Tuesday.
Steck graduated this year from Metropolitan State University with a bachelor of fine arts in communication design. She is known among her colleagues at the hotel for her infectious laughter and love of kittens, art and music, The Denver Post reports.
Immediately after the shooting at the Cardenas store, McLeod was forced into a mansion that was also a place of business. City records show it is licensed as a tattoo parlor. He pursued the building’s occupants and fired shots, but no one was injured, Clark said. He then shot and killed Swinyard near Cheesman Park, Clark said.
Denver police then gave chase to the vehicle believed to be involved in the shooting and an officer exchanged guns with McLeod, Clark said. McLeod was able to flee, running into Lakewood, after gunfire neutralized the officer’s cruiser, he said.
Just before 6 p.m., the Lakewood Police Department received a report of shots fired at Lucky 13 tattoo parlor. Lakewood police spokesman John Romero said Danny Scofield, 38, was killed there.
Scofield is already the father of three, according to a website that raises money for the family.
When officers spotted the vehicle suspected of being involved in the shooting at the Belmar shopping district – home to sidewalk shops in a modern version of downtown – McLeod opened fire and the scenes were shot. returned fire, Romero said. He ran away and allegedly threatened several people with a gun at the restaurant before arriving at the Hyatt House hotel, where he spoke briefly with Steck, before shooting her, he said.
About a minute later, Lakewood officer Ashley Ferris spotted McLeod and ordered him to put down his weapon. She was shot in the stomach but returned fire and killed the gunman.
Ferris underwent surgery on Monday night and is expected to make a full recovery.
“I cannot overemphasize the heroic actions of our Lakewood police agent,” Romero said at a news conference Tuesday. “Facing being shot, facing danger, she can not only save others from this terrible tragedy, but also neutralize the threat.”
Associated Press writer Mead Gruver contributed to this report.
https://time.com/6132108/denver-shooting-suspect-wrote-books/ Denver Shoots Suspect Self-published book Rage preview leaves 5 dead