Will we eventually know what really happened in Colorado Springs this past week?
That’s a good question, now that the city’s mayor has already pronounced the shooting incident to be an act of “domestic terrorism.” (For some reason, our authorities don’t seem able to jump to conclusions quite as quickly when a suspect shouts “Allahu akbar!” while attacking American servicemen.)
The drumbeat of a narrative emerged almost instantly, about Planned Parenthood being attacked because Colorado Springs is a “hub for conservative Christians” (whatever that is) who are implicitly slavering to shoot up abortion clinics.
A counter-narrative is also circulating, with some reports suggesting that the shooting attack on Friday had nothing to do – at least nothing that goes to motive – with the Planned Parenthood location on which subsequent news coverage has centered.
In the interest of having something to refer back to, I want to set down what it appears we know right now. I think we actually know quite a bit. But there’s no telling how little will be released to us in the coming days, now that the police department has said that the investigation documents for this case will be sealed, and the police won’t disclose information about the shooter’s motive or the weapon he used.
It looks like the Colorado Springs shooter in Friday’s attack began his rampage in a parking lot somewhere outside the building that houses the west-side Planned Parenthood clinic. Eventually – at least two hours later – he moved into the Planned Parenthood offices. (See links below for the particulars I’m reconstructing here.)
It was in the Planned Parenthood offices that Robert Lewis Dear, 57, was apprehended by police.
But the initial 911 report of gunfire, made at 11:38 AM by an employee of Planned Parenthood from inside the building, indicated the gun shots were coming from outside.
[Satellite maps at link]