A quick-thinking hotel maid may have averted in mass shooting in Denver, Colorado, when she alerted the police that she saw guns in a room she cleaned.
SWAT teams arrested three men and one woman and seized 16 rifles, more than a thousand rounds of ammunition, body armor and illegal drugs on two different floors. The hotel rooms, which had balconies, would have overlooked the crowds of thousands who had arrived in Denver to watch a major sports event, the Denver Channel reported.
Police said the situation was still under investigation but it did not appear to be related to the sports event.
“Once I got up to my room the hotel phone started ringing,” hotel guest Drake Voell told local Fox News 31. “I answered, and they said for everyone to stay in their room because there was a situation. I asked what was going on and they said there was just a few people that were up to no good on the fourth and the eighth floor.”
“We are incredibly proud that our team swiftly alerted the authorities in this instance,” the Maven Hotel said in a statement. “We are thankful to DPD for their quick action to safely resolve this situation and will continue to work closely with them to support their investigation.”
Richard Platt, 42, Gabriel Rodriguez, 48, and Ricardo Rodriguez, 44, were arrested on the investigation of possession of a weapon. Kanoelehua Serikawa, 43, is being investigated for possession of drugs.
Law enforcement officers said one of the suspects had social media posts that suggested he was planning a mass killing.
In 2017, a single man set up assault rifles in a hotel room in Las Vegas and opened fire on the crowds at a concert below, killing 60 people and injuring hundreds in one of America’s worst mass shootings. Since then, many hotels have new policies on keeping an eye out for suspicious activity and working with the police.
“That incident was solely managed by police because we are so ready for things like that,” Loa Esquilin, public information officer for Denver Office of Emergency Management said. She said the city had an emergency operations center for the weekend in anticipation of the thousands travelling for the sports event, with police and even FBI on alert and standby. “We already have shelters identified, call centers active, it’s all standing by if it does escalate, or if an incident like yesterday escalates to a bigger point.”
Updated Sunday, July 11, 2021 at 12:40 pm .