A 44-year-old Arizona man left the scene of a car crash outside of the building that houses the Colorado Supreme Court in the early hours of last Tuesday and shot his way into the building where he caused “extensive damage” before surrendering to police, the Associated Press reported.
The 2-vehicle crash occurred at 1:15 a.m. on January 2 just outside the Ralph Carr Colorado Justice Center in Denver. Following the crash, Brandon Olsen, 44, pointed a firearm at the driver of the other vehicle and then shot out a window to gain entrance to the building, which houses the Colorado Supreme Court and several other administrative offices and courtrooms.
Denver police said Olsen pointed his weapon at an unarmed security guard and took the keys to the building. With the keys, Olsen was able to wander at will throughout the building, eventually ending up on the seventh floor where he fired several shots and attempted to start a fire, triggering the sprinkler system.
Olsen called 911 from the building at 3:00 a.m. to voluntarily surrender to police.
After his arrest, police discovered two bullet holes in the windows on the seventh floor. Olsen’s semi-automatic pistol was found lying on a table in a conference room, according to the Denver Post.
No one was injured in the incident.
Given the threats and harassment targeting the Colorado Supreme Court justices, who last month ruled that Donald Trump could be barred from the state’s primary ballot, the Colorado State Patrol issued a statement saying that at this time, there is no indication that Olsen’s actions were associated with the threats against the justices.
Olsen’s ex-wife Tori Schumacher told the Denver Post that on New Year’s Eve, Olsen called her for the first time in years to say he was on his way from Arizona to Colorado and wanted to see their children. She said Olsen wasn’t allowed contact with his kids because of his mental health issues and addiction, and when she refused to let him see the children, he “just went a little crazy.”
Schumacher said Olsen’s actions were not politically motivated and insisted that her ex-husband had no political affiliations “whatsoever.”