Authorities: Eldora gunman targeted non-Christians
ELDORA, Colorado ” Court records indicate that a 24-year-old ski lift operator who fatally shot the general manager of the Eldora, Colorado ski area was determined to kill co-workers who weren’t Christian.
Documents filed Wednesday in Boulder District Court say witnesses told authorities that Derik Bonestroo walked into a building at work, fired a gun into the ceiling and said: “If you’re not Christian, you’re going to die.”
General manager Brian Mahon was shot and killed Dec. 30 at the ski area west of Boulder.
Witnesses said when Bonestroo asked Mahon’s religion, Mahon said “Catholic” and Bonestroo shot him in the chest and head.
Bonestroo exchanged fire with a Boulder County sheriff’s deputy as he fled. Authorities say Bonestroo was hit multiple times by the deputy’s assault rifle before he fatally shot himself.
Chris Fiegel, a sheriff’s detective, interviewed employees who were at the ski area’s pump house for a staff meeting. He also interviewed other area residents who were confronted by Bonestroo.
Bonestroo’s “demeanor and tactical style clothing” indicated that he planned the showdown, according to court documents.
Investigators said Bonestroo had a “drop-down magazine holster” strapped to his left thigh and a “drop-down gun holster” on his right thigh. They said he was clutching a Glock semiautomatic handgun in his right hand.
Among the list of items confiscated from Bonestroo’s apartment were medication and a dead cat that was stabbed several times, Pelle said.
Interviews with friends and family member indicated Bonestroo recently had been suffering “significant emotional distress,” but Boulder County Sheriff Joe Pelle said privacy laws prohibit him from discussing details of Bonestroo’s mental state.