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Police: 6 killed, including gunman, in Denver area shootings

Investigators recover evidence from a window frame outside an Xfinity store Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021, in Lakewood, one of the scenes of a shooting spree that left several people dead – including the suspected shooter Monday evening – and left a few more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (David Zalubowski/Associated Press)

DENVER – A gunman who went on a deadly shooting rampage through several business districts in and around Denver was targeting at least some of his victims, authorities said Tuesday.

The suspect in Monday’s shootings killed five people, including one who died from her injuries Tuesday, police said.

The gunman also died after exchanging gunfire with officers in a shopping area in the Denver suburb of Lakewood on Monday night. Police identified him Tuesday as Lyndon James McCleod, 47.

Two others were wounded, including an officer as police pursued the suspect.

Matt Clark, commander of the Denver Police Department’s Major Crimes Division, said during a news conference that McCleod was on the radar of law enforcement and that he knew some of his victims. Authorities did not say what authorities had investigated McCleod for in the past, but noted no charges were filed.

The shootings started shortly after 5 p.m. in central Denver along Broadway, a busy street lined with shops, bars and restaurants, where two women were killed and a man was injured, Pazen said. On Tuesday, candles and flower bouquets rested in the doorway of a nearby tattoo shop.

A short time later, a man was fatally shot in another location, Pazen said. Gunshots were also fired along another busy street near Denver Health hospital, but no one was injured.

Later, Denver police chased the vehicle believed to have been involved in the shootings and exchanged gunfire with the person inside, but the suspect was able to get away after “disabling” the police car, Pazen said. The suspect then fled into Lakewood.

Just before 6 p.m., the Lakewood Police Department received a report of shots fired at a business in the city, said John Romero, a spokesman for that department.

A gunshot victim was later found and pronounced dead at the scene.

A bouquet of flowers is placed outside the door of a tattoo parlor along South Broadway Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021 in Denver, one of the scenes of a shooting spree that left five people dead—including the suspected shooter Monday evening—and left three more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (David Zalubowski/Associated Press)

When officers found the car suspected of being involved in the Belmar shopping area, the suspect opened fire and officers shot back. The suspect ran away and allegedly threatened someone in a business with a gun before going into a Hyatt hotel and shooting a clerk, who was taken to the hospital, Romero said.

The hotel clerk, identified Tuesday as Sarah Steck, has since died.

The suspect also shot and wounded a Lakewood police officer in the abdomen after leaving the hotel, Romero said. The officer shot back, and the suspect was killed killing the suspect.

The wounded officer, whose name has not been released, underwent surgery Monday night. She is expected to make a full recovery.

On Tuesday, in Lakewood’s Belmar shopping district, where shops line sidewalks in a modern version of a downtown, plywood covered some of the windows of a wood-fired pizza restaurant where workers were cleaning up inside. Investigators also were checking the aluminum window frame of a store for bullet holes. Nearby on the street, which was decorated with large, silver holiday ornaments, sat an older two-door Honda Civic with a bullet through the hood and a flat front tire.

Family members identified one of the victims Tuesday as Alicia Cardenas, 44, who was killed in the initial shooting.

Alfredo Cardenas told KMGH-TV that Alicia Cardenas, his only daughter, owned her first tattoo shop when she was 19 and had worked in the Broadway location in Denver for 15 to 20 years.

“Very gregarious, very friendly, but she was a very determined person,” he said. “She knew where she was going.”

Alicia Cardenas is survived by her 12-year-old, Alfredo Cardenas said.

Associated Press photographer David Zalubowski contributed to this report.

Investigators chart evidence from a window outside an Xfinity store Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021, in Denver Lakewood, Colo., one of the scenes of a shooting spree that left several people dead—including the suspected shooter Monday evening—and left a few more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Leftover police tape is wrapped around a pole to block off the sidewalk by a pizza parlor Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021 in Lakewood, Colo., near one of the scenes of a shooting spree that left five people dead—including the suspected shooter Monday evening—and left three more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Investigators confer as they cross the intersection of Alaska Drive and Vance Street after a stop at an Xfinity store Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021, in Denver Lakewood, Colo., one of the scenes of a shooting spree that left several people dead—including the suspected shooter Monday evening—and left a few more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
A sign in the window of an Xfinity store advises customers of a closure Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021, in Lakewood, Colo., near one of the scenes of a shooting spree that left several people dead—including the suspected shooter Monday evening—and left a few more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
An evidence marker is placed next to a bullet hole in the hood of a Honda Civic parked along the curb near a pizza parlor Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021 in Lakewood, Colo., one of the scenes of a shooting spree that left five people dead—including the suspected shooter Monday evening—and left three more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
A customer walks away from the closed entrance to an Xfinity store Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021 in Lakewood, Colo., one of the scenes in a shooting spree that left five people dead—including the suspected shooter Monday evening—and left three more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Workers confer close to a sheet of plywood covering a window of a pizza parlor Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021 in Lakewood, Colo., near one of the scenes of a shooting spree that left five people dead—including the suspected shooter Monday evening—and left three more people wounded. The spree spread from the core of Denver to the western suburb of Lakewood where the suspect was shot and killed by police near a busy intersection in a bustling shopping district. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)