CUSTER COUNTY, Colo. — Authorities are working diligently to locate the perpetrator responsible for the death of three individuals and the injury of a fourth following a dispute over property boundaries in rural southern Colorado, according to the sheriff. The shooting occurred around 1 p.m. on Monday in a wooded area, leading to the deaths of two men and a woman, with another woman sustaining chest gunshot wounds. A fifth person managed to escape the gunfire, as stated by Custer County Sheriff Lloyd “Rich” Smith during a news conference Monday evening.
The suspect has been identified as 45-year-old Hanme K. Clark, described as 6-foot-3, 200 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. Law enforcement officials in Custer and nearby Chaffee are on the hunt for Clark, who may be driving a white Dodge Ram 1500 pickup truck with a white topper and license plate BHLK27.
Sheriff Smith revealed that the suspect and at least one of the victims had been involved in previous civil disputes about property lines and easements, although further details were not provided. The nature of the relationships between the gunman and the victims remains unclear at this time.
The deadly shooting marks at least the 609th mass shooting in the U.S. so far this year with four or more people shot, excluding the perpetrator, according to data from the Gun Violence Archive. The shooting took place in a remote part of Custer County near the border with Fremont County, Sheriff Smith confirmed.
Upon arrival, authorities faced high risk in locating the shooter in the wooded area. However, they were able to rescue a survivor who sustained gunshot wounds and transport her to a Level 1 trauma center in Colorado Springs. Meanwhile, a local shelter-in-place order was issued as law enforcement personnel, including a Fremont County SWAT team and a drone, initiated a search for the suspect. The shelter-in-place order was lifted later that evening.
Sheriff Smith reported having a promising lead on the location of the suspect and the vehicle, indicating ongoing collaboration with another law enforcement agency for the suspect’s apprehension.