Matthew J. Murray
(1983 December 9, 2007) was an American gunman who on
December 9, 2007 killed four people in the Youth With A
Mission and New Life Church shootings before taking his
Murray was one of two sons of a
prominent Colorado neurologist and was homeschooled by
his mother Loretta in a suburb of Denver, in what
friends and neighbors described as a deeply religious
Christian home. Because of his background and his
killing of fellow Christians, American Christians have
sought answers to what FoxNews.com columnist Lauren
Green has called "senseless murder".
Jeanne Assam, a New Life Church
volunteer security guard, shot Murray several times with
her personally-owned concealed weapon. After Murray was
wounded, he killed himself with a shotgun.
According to the Colorado Springs
Police Department, Murray was carrying two handguns, an
assault rifle and over 1,000 rounds of ammunition.
Pastor Brady Boyd estimated that about 7,000 people were
on the church campus at the time of the shooting.
Police initially claimed when
supporting a search warrant that Murray had recently
sent hate mail to the Youth With A Mission training
center--but later retracted the statement, stating that
Murray sent e-mails to an affiliated group in which he
criticized Christians but did not threaten violence. He
had been dismissed from the school's program three years
earlier. Murray self-identified with Seung-Hui Cho, Eric
Harris, and former Children of God member Ricky
Before the shooting Murray left
several violent and threatening messages on several
religious websites, espousing his hatred for
Christianity and his intentions on killing as many
Christians as possible.
One message read: "I'm coming for
EVERYONE soon and I WILL be armed to the ...teeth and I
WILL shoot to kill... God, I can't wait till I can kill
you people. Feel no remorse, no sense of shame, I don't
care if I live or die in the shoot-out. All I want to do
is kill and injure as many of you... as I can especially
Christians who are to blame for most of the problems in
This posting demonstrates that Murray
was influenced by Columbine perpetrator Eric Harris, who
left the following message on his website prior to his
own killing spree: "I'm coming for EVERYONE soon and
I WILL be armed to the fucking teeth and I WILL shoot to
kill... God, I can't wait til I can kill you people.
Feel no remorse, no sense of shame. I don't care if I
live or die in the shoot-out. All I want to do is kill
and injure as many of you as I can, especially a few
people. Like Brooks Brown."
Investigators obtained copies of
Murray's writings and studied other Web sites. Their
probe revealed that his writings, which spanned several
months, became increasingly violent. Some web users
tried to counsel Murray and one psychologist even
offered her services after reading his poem called "Crying
all alone in pain in the nightmare of Christianity".
Murray refused her offer.
The Associated Press has reported
that "Interviews and Murray's Internet postings depict
him as a disturbed young man who was bitter about being
an outcast, turned against charismatic Christianity and
dabbled in other beliefs." Murray was also a member of
Ad Astra Oasis of Ordo Templi Orientis before being
asked to leave that organization.
KMGH-TV reported that a letter to God
was found in Murray's car asking Jesus for answers to
plaintive questions such as "What have I done so wrong?
What is wrong with me anyways? Am I really such a bad
person?" and "why didn't you ever answer my cries?".
The letter was photographed and
published on KMGH's website. In the photograph, four
words were obscured by black marks. These may be
obscenities; both the Associated Press and KMGH reported
that the letter was "laced with expletives", but
otherwise did not indicate the nature of those four
The 2007 Colorado YWAM and New Life
shootings occurred December 9, 2007, when Matthew J. Murray
attacked the Youth With A Mission training center in Arvada, Colorado,
and New Life Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
A shooting at the Youth With A Mission (YWAM) center,
killed two people and wounded two others in Arvada. The gunman entered
the building early Sunday morning December 9, 2007, and began shooting.
Witnesses told police that the gunman had been a 24-year-old white male,
wearing a dark jacket and skull cap, armed with a handgun and left on
Around 12:30 a.m. MST (07:30 UTC), following a
Christmas banquet that had taken place earlier that night, a man knocked
on the door of the Youth With a Mission center. The man asked personnel
in the facility if he could stay at the center overnight. When he was
refused, the man opened fire, killing Tiffany Johnson, the center's
director of hospitality, and staff member Philip Crouse. Dan Griebenow,
24, was critically wounded with a bullet in his neck, and Charlie Blanch,
22, suffered bullet wounds to the leg.
After the incident, the YWAM base evacuated its 80
people to the mountain campus in Golden, 45 of whom were in the building
at the time of the shooting.
Local police quickly conducted a canine search of the
surrounding area for the man, but were unable to find him. They had
hoped that fresh snow would help them track the suspect, but were unable
to locate him. A reverse 911 call went out to residents of the
neighborhood to let them know a shooting suspect might be in their area.
On December 13, 2007, Murray's family issued a
statement saying that it was "groping for answers" and issued an apology.
New Life Church
On Sunday, December 9, 2007, at about 1 p.m. Murray,
armed with an assault rifle and two pistols, entered the foyer of the
New Life Church in Colorado Springs and fatally shot two and wounded
three others before himself being shot and wounded by Jeanne Assam, a
church member acting as security. Murray then took his own life.
At about 1 p.m. MST (20:00 UTC), 30 minutes after the
11 a.m. service had ended at New Life Church, Murray opened fire in the
church parking lot shooting the Works family and Judy Purcell, 40.
Murray then entered the building's main foyer where he shot Larry
Bourbonnais, 59, hitting him in the forearm. At this point, Assam opened
fire on Murray with her personally owned concealed weapon. Police say
that after suffering multiple hits from Assam's gun, Murray fatally shot
Assam later stated that "God guided me and protected
me [and I] did not think for a minute to run away."
The pastor of the church stated that Assam shot
Murray before he entered 50 feet (15 m) inside the building, after she
encountered him in the hallway, and that Assam probably saved "over 100
Following the shooting spree, Colorado Springs Police
Department officers searched the church campus looking for suspicious
devices. Colorado governor Bill Ritter ordered state authorities to help
investigate. The FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and
Explosives also came to the site to assist.
It was not immediately known whether the shootings
were related to an earlier Arvada missionary shooting, 70 miles (110 km)
away. However, prior to the second shooting, police were already
conducting an investigation at Murray's home.
At the Arvada missionary shooting, two people died
and two were wounded at 12:30 a.m. after a gunman opened fire in a
dormitory at a missionary training center on the campus of Faith Bible
Police said the description of the gunman in the
second shooting was similar to the first: a white male wearing a dark
hat and dark jacket.
On December 10, the gunman in both the
YWAM Arvada and New Life Church shootings was identified as Matthew J.
Murray, age 24, one of two sons of a Colorado neurologist. Reportedly,
Murray was homeschooled in a deeply religious Christian household, and
he attended, but did not complete, a missionary training program at the
YWAM Arvada facility in 2002.
Court records indicated that Murray was bitter over
his expulsion from the 12-week missionary training program. His
expulsion from the school was confirmed by Cheryl Morrison, whose
husband, George Morrison, is pastor of the Faith Bible Chapel adjacent
to YWAM Denver. She didn't know specifics of the conflict. "I don't
think that run-in is the word, but they did have to dismiss him. It
had to be something of significance, because they go the nth degree with
people." Murray was expelled from the school due to "strange
behavior," which included playing frightening rock music and claiming to
hear voices. Before the second shooting, Murray left several violent and
threatening messages on several religious websites, espousing his hatred
for Christianity and his intentions on killing as many Christians as
One message read: "I'm coming for EVERYONE soon
and I WILL be armed to the ...teeth and I WILL shoot to kill. ...God, I
can't wait till I can kill you people. Feel no remorse, no sense of
shame, I don't care if I live or die in the shoot-out. All I want to do
is kill and injure as many of you ... as I can especially Christians who
are to blame for most of the problems in the world."
In another of his very last posts, made that morning
to a Usenet newsgroup, he identified himself as being a member of a
local branch of the Ordo Templi Orientis. According to the chapter
leader, Murray had attended their events for one or two years, but his
request for membership was turned down and he was asked to leave in
either September or October.
He was also baptized into the The Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) in late 2006, according to
According to investigators, Murray descended into
anti-Christian derangement over a period of several months, and his web-postings
became increasingly violent, despondent and hateful. Some of the users
tried to counsel Murray and one psychologist even offered her services
after reading his poem called "Crying all alone in pain in the nightmare
of Christianity." Murray refused her offer. After the killing, police
found a letter addressed "To God" by Murray in his car. The letter was
listed in an evidence and property invoice of items that Colorado
Springs police recovered from a 1992 Toyota Camry belonging to Matthew
Murray. The documents were obtained by Newsradio 850 KOA. The note to
God was found in the rear passenger seat, along with two books: "I Had
to Say Something" by Mike Jones and "Serial Murderers and Their Victims"
by Eric W. Hickey, according to the invoice.
Additional internet postings discovered after the
shooting revealed that Murray may have been bi-sexual or possibly
homosexual. He also claimed to have been physically and psychologically
abused within the church, and hinted at sexual abuse. In his online
postings he cites this as the main reason for his hatred of Christianity.
He was discovered to have posted on a suicide forum under the name
Murray obsesses with
By Howard Pankratz - The Denver Post
March 28, 2008
Jacinda Treadway was the last person to talk to
Matthew Murray before he opened fire on parishioners at the New Life
Church in Colorado Springs.
He told her from his cell phone that he had been
researching mass shootings.
Murray had already killed two people at the Youth
with a Mission in Arvada and, unknown to Treadway, he was in the
vicinity of the New Life Church in Colorado Springs as they spoke,
Arvada police said in a report released Thursday.
Murray told Treadway he knew about the Arvada
shootings and told Treadway it just didn't make sense.
"It's crazy...like the Omaha shooting last week,"
Murray told Treadway from his cell phone, referring to eight people
gunned down at a mall. "I don't understand what the world's
Murray added: "I can't believe it, one (Arvada) after
another (Omaha). I was studying that."
Then he told Treadway that he was not only studying
the Omaha shooting but researching a school shooting - either Columbine
or another mass shooting that made headlines.
"Matthew said he was researching kids who do that,"
Treadway told investigators later.
According to police, Murray had been fascinated by
the earlier mass shootings and their perpetrators.
His computer was replete with downloads on Columbine;
killers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold; the Virginia Tech massacre and
its shooter, Cho Seung-Hui; the Platte Canyon hostage situation; and
Rodriguez, who as a child member of a cult claimed he
was forced to perform sex acts, later killed a former nanny and then
In addition to those incidents, investigators found
downloads for the February 2007 rampage of Sulejman Talovic at the
Trolley Square mall in Salt Lake City, that resulted in the deaths of
five people and serious injuries to four others.
And Murray had studied the shooting spree of Robert
Hawkins at Omaha's Westroads Mall who killed eight people on the
Wednesday before Murray's Sunday shootings in
According to law enforcement analysts, when they put
in key words in Murray's computer, they got 444 connections to "Columbine,"
33 for "V Tech," 9 for "Platte Canyon," 3 for "Utah Shooting," and one
for "Nebraska Shooting."
In addition, Murray - like Harris and Klebold - had a
keen interest in guns and explosives. Under the terms "guns" and "Beretta",
there were a total of 107 hits. And under "Explosives" and "Explosive
Devices," there were 96 entries.
The fact that Murray was gathering ammunition was
something that his parents, Dr. Ron Murray and Loretta Murray, were
He had told his mother that he was going to have
deliveries of ammunition to their for use in hunting.
On one occasion, she told police, ammunition was
delivered to the Murray home addressed to Matthew, and UPS had her sign
When Murray's father had a conversation with Matthew
about the ammunition, Matthew "played it off" and said he had met up
with some friends and planned to go hunting.
Murray told his son he didn't want the ammunition in
the house and to keep it outside in his car.
Police said that Murray, a well-known Denver-area
neurosurgeon, went into his son's room several times to see if his son
had any guns. He went through a drawer or two, but did not turn the
mattress upside down or look in every possible area to see if there were
weapons, police said.
The doctor found no weapons.
During the months before the shootings in Arvada and
Colorado Springs, officials said, Murray had acquired an arsenal of
weapons. They included a Bushmaster XM-15; an AK-47 assault rifle; a
Beretta .40 cal. semi-automatic handgun; a Beretta .22 cal. handgun; and
a Springfield Armory 9mm semi-automatic handgun.
In addition, investigators said that Murray was armed
with more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition when he went to the New Life
Church. Another 1,000 rounds of ammunition was located in his bedroom.
Employees at the UPS store, 4950 Yosemite St., were
very concerned about the ammunition Murray was receiving, according to
Murray had gone to the store to open a mail box so he
could receive ammunition by mail. Shortly afterwards, the employees
noted that Murray was receiving "boxes and boxes of ammunition."
Employees noted, for instance, that on Sept. 18, he
received a box of "six clips" - three of the clips held 16 bullets and
three clips held 30 bullets.
One of the employees asked Murray if he went to a
shooting range a lot. Murray replied he did because he was trying to get
into the Army.
Throughout the hundreds of pages of police reports,
people who were acquainted with Murray described him as secretive,
socially awkward and given to bursts of temper - particularly at his
And like Harris and Klebold he was a computer-oriented,
blasting various segments of society in his online posts, with a
particular focus on Christianity.
He chafed under his Christian upbringing and let the
world know through the Internet.
"I went to all kinds of fundamentalist/Pentecostal/evangelical
bible studies, conferences, prayer meetings and even a missionary
school/ministry called Youth With A Mission Denver. Of course, lots of
hypocrisy and no real love to be found at YWAM Denver," wrote Murray. "I
know the bible better than most Christian pastors. Oh, and I've already
been baptized, received the 'baptism of the Holy spirit,' spoke in
tongues and all of those other games Christians love to play."
One of the few people Murray considered a friend was
Jacinda Treadway, the woman he spoke to after he had killed in Arvada
and was about to kill in Colorado Springs.
Treadway had met Murray at YWAM of Denver (Arvada)
and she was taken aback when she found out that he described her as his
best or closest friend. At most, she thought of him as an acquaintance.
But Treadway felt very sorry him.
She described him as "beyond awkward" and told
investigators that "he was so unable to interact with people."
In the early morning hours after the young people
were shot in Arvada, Treadway checked her phone and saw that Murray had
called her. In addition, other friends had called to tell her about the
When she saw the messages she thought for certain it
was Murray who was responsible for the murders at YWAM and she was
concerned he might go back and kill more people.
She called the Arvada police but when she was
transferred to a tip line, she hung up, not knowing how she could
describe in words why she felt Murray was responsible, she later told
Later that afternoon she spoke to Murray as, unknown
to her, he talked to her near the New Life Church. It was then he told
her he was researching mass shootings and their perpetrators.
She told police she wanted Murray to convince her he
was not responsible for the Arvada shootings, but he never did.
She told police, "I realized I was talking to the
person who did this."
Arvada shooting report
offers new insights into killer
By Elizabeth Aguilera, Kirk Mitchell and
Howard Pankratz - The Denver Post
The Arvada report being released today about Matthew
Murray and the Youth With a Mission shootings in December includes
evidence that the shooter was obsessed with pornography and other mass
It is much more in-depth than what was released by
Colorado Springs police earlier this month and offers information not
previously disclosed. That includes hundreds of photos of Murray's
bedroom and the bloody scene at YWAM; the contents of his computer,
including adult and child pornography; and voluminous information about
previous mass shootings in Omaha, at Virginia Tech and Columbine.
There are detailed descriptions of his blog postings;
a timeline, including his whereabouts and significant cellphone
conversations before and
after the YWAM shootings; and
interviews with people he called during that time, as well as with his
Early on Dec. 9, 24-year-old Murray fatally shot
Tiffany Johnson, 26, and Philip Crouse, 24, at the mission facility,
12750 W. 63rd Ave., in Arvada.
About 12 hours later, he killed sisters Stephanie,
18, and Rachel Works, 16, outside New Life Church in Colorado Springs.
Jeanne Assam, a member of the church who was serving
as a security guard at New Life that day, shot Murray. He then shot
himself in the head with a Springfield 9mm pistol, the same gun he had
used to kill Johnson and Crouse.
Colorado Springs police released its 450-page report
on the New Life shootings on March 12.
Much of the new information comes as a result of a
search warrant served on Murray's home in Arapahoe County on the night
of the shootings. He lived there his mother, Loretta Murray, and his
father, Ronald Murray, a neurosurgeon.
Matthew Murray's room was "in disarray," the report
said. Officials found ammunition but no explosive devices. There was a
book called "Practical Homicide: How to Survive a Tactical Shooting."
Other books found were on witchcraft, Satanism and the Masons. The books
were "clearly visible," the report
The Arvada police report indicates that experts found
more than 500,000 images on Murray's computer, including adult
pornography, child pornography and homosexual pornography.
He had downloads about Columbine gunmen Dylan Klebold
and Eric Harris, the Platte Canyon School shootings and the Virginia
Tech shootings. Experts later did a forensic analysis of the computer
and found 444 connections to Columbine. There were 33 to Virginia Tech.
Investigators found a map of the location of a CTI co-worker's
residence. Murray had been laid off from Central Telecom Inc., police
said, and there had been conflicts there between Murray and his co-workers.
There also was a map for a "gnostic Mass" scheduled
for the evening of Dec. 8.
The service was organized by Ad Astra Oasis, a
gnostic organization that had asked Murray to distance himself from
The investigation revealed that Murray legally
purchased $2,700 in ammunition, magazines and supplies from
CheaperThanDirt.com. He had legally purchased five weapons, all in his
own name. He had altered one, a Bushmaster XM-15, to allow it to fire a
larger 6.8mm round. That was the gun he used to kill the Works sisters.
Police said Murray left no note or web posting to
explain why he chose New Life and YWAM.
Timeline of December
11:20-11:58 p.m. Dec. 8 Matthew Murray
calls his cousin, Gabe LaPoint.
Midnight Murray knocks on the door of YWAM
while still on phone with LaPoint and is let in by Stephanie Hollman.
12:10 a.m. Dec. 9 Kenny Snell takes Murray
to the men's room.
12:11-12:27 Murray is on the phone with
Deborah Wittrein, an acquaintance from Prince of Peace Church of the
12:28 Tiffany Johnson and Dan Griebenow
confront Murray in the hallway. Philip Crouse and Charlie Blanch follow.
12:29 Blanch, who was shot in the leg, calls
12:30 Murray flees.
12:31 A police officer arrives at YWAM.
12:45 Arvada police notify the Colorado
Bureau of Investigation.
1:15 Some 45 students and staff are taken to
the police station to be interviewed.
1:25-1:27 Murray called his father, Ronald
Murray, to talk about a fight with a waitress at Applebee's. (This fight
did not happen.)
Early morning hours Six suspects are
identified in the YWAM shootings, none of whom is Murray.
9 a.m. Murray's mother, Loretta Murray,
heads to church, leaving Matthew Murray at home. His father was in
Arizona on a business trip.
9:14 Ron Morris of King's Kids calls Arvada
police, but the tip is assigned with an incorrect phone number.
9:38 Tip is reassigned.
10 A detective interviews Morris for 20 or
30 minutes. Murray is identified as a possible suspect.
10:03 Murray posts "you Christians brought
this on yourselves" from his computer.
10:19 Murray leaves home for Colorado
10:50 Morris provides detectives Murray's
address and birth date.
10:50-10:52 Murray leaves a message for
Jennifer Cali, an acquaintance with the Gnostic group Ad Astra Oasis, to
say "goodbye" and that he "is going to go out and do some crazy shit."
10:53 Jacinda Treadway, a former YWAM member,
calls Arvada police from Tennessee. She is transferred to tip line but
leaves no message. (She calls back after New Life)
11:07 Police request driver's license photo
11:48 The FBI leaves a message on the tip
line about Web posting but without identifying information.
11:51 Murray's photo is put in a photo
12:13-12:16 p.m. Murray talks to his father
and agrees to pick him up at DIA. Murray is in Colorado Springs at this
12:16-12:45 Murray is on the phone with
Treadway. He ends the call abruptly, saying he is going to church.
12:35 Witnesses do not identify Murray from
a photo lineup.
1:10 New Life shootings take place.
1:30 Arvada's deputy police chief notifies
detectives of the New Life shootings.
2:32 Detectives get Murray's cellphone
number from his post-office box. The service provider tells them that
the phone has been turned off and can't be "pinged."
3:15 Detectives arrive at Murray's home, and
his parents contacted.
Afternoon Arvada and Colorado Springs police
begin a joint investigation.
Source: Arvada Police Department
Gunman came from 'good, grounded
December 14, 2007
Junior high's not the best time
in most people's lives, but Ron Murray had an
"Everybody liked him," said
boyhood friend Jim Ulibarri. "Ron has the most
Murray loved basketball as a boy,
but when the tall blond wanted to play in Chicano
tournaments he had to bring his birth certificate to
prove he was half Hispanic.
"We used to give him a hard time
about it," Ulibarri said, with a laugh.
The two attended Lake Junior High
in north Denver and later reunited at the University
of Colorado. By then, Murray had married his high
school sweetheart, Loretta, and had a baby girl,
"Ron is just an incredible guy,"
That sentiment would later be
shared by the many patients, friends and co-workers
Murray met through his church and medical practice,
where he specializes in the treatment and research
of multiple sclerosis.
Those same people have rallied
this week around the Murray family after their son
Matthew killed four people in shootings at Christian
centers in Arvada and Colorado Springs.
In Internet rantings, Matthew
talked of a stifling Christian upbringing filled
with abuse an accusation family friends staunchly
"There are not kinder or gentler
parents," said Casey Nikoloric, who is Murray's
patient and has known the family for years.
She and others who know the
family have declined to comment, saying the family
wants to wait until all the victims' funerals have
Many things are not known.
What kind of treatment did Ron
and Loretta Murray seek for their son, who heard
voices and had trouble fitting in? Was the family
aware he had bought five guns in the past year? Did
they have any inkling that their oldest boy would be
capable of such violence?
This is known by the people who
love and ache for the Murrays:
"This was a good, grounded
family," said Karen Wenzel, executive director of
the Rocky Mountain MS Center. "Ron is a pillar in
the MS community. He's one of the most compassionate
caregivers I've ever experienced."
Deeply religous family
Ronald Scott Murray was born in
Denver in 1951. Loretta Jean Casados was born in New
York in 1953 and later moved to Denver with her
The Casadoses lived in the 3900
block of Shoshone Street. Robert Quintana lived a
house away from the Casadoses, a family he remembers
as deeply religious.
"They used to come to the door
and try to get us interested in their church," said
Quintana, now 65.
He remembers Loretta as shy and
quiet. He believes she attended North High School.
That's where the 6-feet-3 Murray
played basketball and was a member of the "D" or
letterman's club. He graduated in 1970.
The couple was married by a
Denver County Court judge on Nov. 27. They lived
with his mother, Dorothy, at West 26th Avenue and
Ulibarri, who had attended West
High School, reunited with Murray when they went to
CU. He said Loretta and their daughter would watch
him play during basketball tournaments.
"Ron worked a lot," Ulibarri
recalled. "He parked cars at the Commerce City dog
"I never saw him get upset,
overly excited. I never saw him low. He always had a
smile on his face."
Murray graduated in 1975 with a
degree in chemistry, and then graduated from CU's
medical school in 1980. Loretta Murray received her
bachelor's in physical therapy in 1977, university
They lived in Salt Lake City for
five years, where Matthew was born in 1983. The
family return to Colorado in 1986, the year
Christopher was born.
The Murrays in 1986 moved into a
four-bedroom in the Cherry Creek Vista neighorhood
in unicorporated Arapahoe County. They still live on
"I have a wonderful wife and
family and am involved in our church," Ron Murray
told classmates in 1990 at his 20-year high school
reunion. "I will be married 20 years this fall to my
high school sweetheart, Loretta."
Loretta had quit work to be stay
home with her children.
The boys were homeschooled with
instructive materials from a strict religious group,
the Illinois-based Institute in Basic Life
Principles. Critics said the program is cultish and
encourages corporal punishment, but president Bill
Gothard said it is based on "how to love your
neighbor as Christ loved us."
The family is active at Love
Fellowship Church in Denver, where Phil Abeyta,
Matthew's uncle, is a minister, and Lorreta Murray
is in charge of the women's ministry.
Matthew left that church a couple
of years ago. He was living at home at the time of
the shootings, drifted in recent years, and was
asked to leave several programs he attended.
His only companion seemed to be
his computer keyboard, where he spent hours on anti-religious
"All I found in christianity was
hate, abuse (sexual, physical, psychological, and
emotional), hypocrisy, and lies," he wrote.
As for his siblings, Christopher,
21, attends Oral Roberts University. Cherise, 37,
who also went to Oral Roberts, is a stay-at home mom
with two children.
"These are two well adjusted,
grounded children," said Nikoloric, the family
"And their parents have devoted
their lives to helping others."
Helping MS patients
Murray is in private practice in
Lone Tree, but has close ties to Englewood's Rocky
Mountain MS Center, which assists people with
A neurologist, he has been
affiliated in some way or another with the center
for 25 of its last 29 years, the director, Wenzel,
said.He currently is serving as a consultant to help
the center hire a medical director, he post he once
Loretta Murphy helped do
fundraisers for the center, Wenzel said.
Ron Murray's colleagues and
patients are effusive in the praise for a man who
treated his patients long after their insurance ran
"I cannot say more fine words
about Ron and his professionalism," said board
member Cade Sibley.
Since the shootings, an
outpouring of sympathy has flooded the center.
Nikoloric also has been bombarded with calls and
letters, including an e-mail from a 10-year-old boy.
Dear Dr. Murray, it began.
I wanted to e-mail you and tell
you that I am sorry for your loss. I recently lost
my mom to MS and want you to continue your research.
I am happy that you have researched so much already.
I want to be an MS researcher when I grow up. Please
continue your research and serving God. I am praying
Sometime around 1999 or 2000,
Ulibarri, Murray's childhood pal, became concerned
about his daughter's headaches. She suffered from
migraines after a car accident and ultimately died
at age 25 from her injuries.
Ulibarri hadn't talked to his
friend in years, but Murray immediately made an
appointment to see his 22-year-old daughter.
Ulibarri discovered Murray was
the same guy everybody liked in junior high.
"Same personality. And he had
that smile," Ulibarri said. "My heart aches for Ron
and his wife."
Church shooter wanted to
By Tom McGhee - The Denver Post
Police describe a chaotic scene with smoke bombs
going off outside the New Life Church moments before Matthew Murray
began firing in a rampage that killed two and wounded three others
Forensic evidence from the shooting at the church
matches evidence found at Arvada's Youth with a Mission, a missionary
training facility, scene of an earlier shooting spree that killed two
others. Murray had once been enroleld there.
Police say Murray, 24, of Englewood, was the lone
gunman in both cases.
At an afternoon press conference, police described
the chaos at New Life Church that began at about 1:10 p.m. Sunday.
Smoke bombs went off near two entrances to the mega-church
before Murray fired his first shots.
who was armed with clips for 1,000
rounds of ammunition, and two hand guns, began firing an assault rifle
in an corner of the parking lot.
Sisters Stephanie, 18, and Rachael Works, 16, and
their father, David Works, 51, were struck. Stephanie died at the scene,
and her sister died later at Penrose Hospital.
Their father was wounded in the abdomen and groin.
Murray continued to spray bullets, hitting Judy
Purcell, 40, in the shoulder and striking a number of vehicles.
Murray then made his way to the church's eastern
entrance and fired several rounds through the doors. Larry Bourbannais,
59, was wounded.
Assam, who also spoke at a Colorado Springs press
conference this afternoon, said she saw Murray coming through the doors,
and took cover.
She then emerged and identified herself, "and I took
him down." Assam fired as many as six rounds at Murray.
Assam said she was praying to the "Holy Spirit"
during the confrontation.
It is not known if Assam's rounds killed Murray, said
Colorado Springs police Sgt. Jeff Jensen. "She definitely wounded him
but we don't know if she was the cause of the fatal wound. We don't know
if there was a self-inflicted gunshot wound as well."
Police found three weapons - the
assault rifle, and two pistols, along with a backpack he carried
containing ammo in clips.
The shootings after a service at the mega-church
Sunday afternoon followed a bloodbath in the early morning hours at
Youth With a Mission, a missionary training facility in Arvada.
Two Youth With a Mission staff members died after
that shooting, and two more were wounded. Murray asked the staff to stay
at the residence on the Faith Bible Chapel campus before the shootings.
When Tiffany Johnson, 26, the hospitality director,
told him he wouldn't be able to spend the night, he began shooting.
Johnson and the other staffers were going to suggest
alternative places for him to stay before they were gunned down, Cheryl
Morrison, wife of Faith
Chapel's senior pastor said.
Johnson and Philip Crouse, 24, died after being taken
to area hospitals. Dan Griebenow, 24 and Charlie Blanch, 22, were
Murray participated in a Youth With a Mission
training program 5 years ago but his health barred him from doing field
work and going further with the program, YWaM director Peter Warren said
at a separate press conference in Arvada.
In the past few weeks, he sent string of messages
expressing his discontent about the program to the program and its
director, authorities said.
Earlier today, a law enforcement official who spoke
on condition of anonymity said it appeared Murray "hated Christians."
Murray is the son of a local neurologist who is a
on multiple sclerosis.
Investigators, including a bomb squad, searched a
home on East Berry Place in Arapahoe County on Sunday night, Murray's
last known address.
In 1990, Murray was registered as a home-schooled
student with the Cherry Creek School District, said district spokeswoman
Tustin Amole. He later took the Iowa test, a standard test given to
third-graders nationwide at the time, said Amole. That is the last
record that the district has of him.
Murray has something in common with the Works sisters
who died at New Life. They too were home-schooled.
Murray's later school history indicates a young man
adrift. He attended Arapahoe Community College for a while, then quit.
Last year he enrolled for a class at Colorado
Christian University but dropped out immediately after