A Navy petty officer stationed in Colorado is believed to have played a role in subduing the gunman who opened fire at a Colorado Springs LGBTQ night club this weekend, killing five people and injuring at least 19 others.
Officials have lauded a clubgoer named Thomas James for helping to take out the shooter but have yet to officially confirm that he is Information Systems Technician 2nd Class Thomas James, who the Navy said suffered injuries in the Nov. 19 incident.
IT2 James “was among those injured in the Colorado night club shooting,” Navy officials said in a brief statement Tuesday. “James is currently in stable condition and we remain hopeful he will make a full recovery. We ask that all respect his privacy as he continues his recovery.”
On Monday, officials hailed the heroism of Army veteran Richard Fierro and Thomas James for their roles in stopping the gunman.
“We owe Colorado heroes Richard Fierro and Thomas James an outstanding debt of thanks for confronting and fighting the gunman and preventing further violence at the Club Q Shooting,” Gov. Jared Polis tweeted.
The Colorado Springs Police Department also acknowledged James and Fierro for their “heroic actions” during Saturday’s chaos, when alleged gunman Anderson Lee Aldrich walked into Club Q and started shooting.
Fierro told reporters this week that he grabbed the gunman’s body armor and started punching him as James kicked him, The Associated Press reported.
The Army veteran said he told James to kick away the shooter’s rifle, according to the AP, and a drag show performer helped subdue the gunman as well.
Fierro and James then pinned the shooter down until officers arrived a few minutes later, the AP reported.
James remained hospitalized Tuesday, according to the Navy, and could not be reached for comment.
The sailor had been stationed at a Defense Intelligence Agency detachment in Colorado Springs since October 2021, according to service records.
Geoff is a senior staff reporter for Military Times, focusing on the Navy. He covered Iraq and Afghanistan extensively and was most recently a reporter at the Chicago Tribune. He welcomes any and all kinds of tips at firstname.lastname@example.org.