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THORNTON, Colo. (AP) — A man arrested on suspicion of fatally shooting three people inside a suburban Denver Walmart was described Thursday by neighbors as a hostile loner who cursed at them and often carried a shotgun in and out of his third-floor apartment.

Police arrested Scott Ostrem, 37, a day after the shooting that killed three people following a brief morning rush-hour chase in the northern Denver suburb of Thornton several blocks from his apartment building and about 5 miles (8 kilometers) from the Walmart.

Ostrem was handcuffed at a crowded intersection about 14 hours after the shooting, which killed two men and a woman and sent dozens of shoppers and workers fleeing in panic from the busy store. Police spokesman Victor Avila declined to say whether Ostrem had a weapon.

Identified as the victims were Pamela Marques, 52, of Denver; Carlos Moreno, 66, of Thornton; and Victor Vasquez, 26, of Denver, said Adams County Coroner Monica Broncucia-Jordan. None were Walmart employees.

Police did not disclose if they had not determined a motive for the shooting, but residents of the Samuel Park Apartments building where Ostrem lived described him as a rude man who kept to himself.

Most of the building’s tenants talk to each other, but renter Teresa Muniz said Ostrem never returned her greetings and swore at people for sitting on exterior stairways and leaving laundry in communal machines.

“He didn’t seem to have anybody,” she said. “Being angry all the time. That’s what he seemed like, always angry.”

Muniz said she sometimes saw Ostrem carrying a shotgun or a bow and set of arrows to and from the building, which faces the back side of a liquor store, a dollar store and a cellphone store.

Gerald Burnett, a 63-year-old retiree who lives in a first-floor unit, said he was sitting on the stairs drinking coffee one morning when Ostrem came down, told him to move and cursed at him.

“Dude had an attitude, big time,” Burnett said. “He’s the type of person if you said ‘good morning,’ he wouldn’t say nothing. If you greeted him, he wouldn’t say anything back. I just learned not to even talk to the clown.”

Thornton, one of Denver’s larger suburbs, is a mostly blue-collar community where about a third of its 136,000 residents identify as Hispanic or Latino.

Ostrem had minor run-ins with police dating back to the 1990s, including a December 1999 charge of resisting arrest in Denver that was dismissed the following year.

In September 2015, Ostrem filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and listed his income for the previous year as $47,028.00. He estimated that he more than $85,000 including credit card debt and said he worked as a sheet metal fabricator at a roofing company in the town of Erie, about 25 miles (45 kilometers) north of Denver.

Ostrem had worked for a Denver roofing company until 2014, said Sandra Runyon, an administrative assistant at Tecta America Colorado Commercial Roofing. Runyon said the company had had no contact with Ostrem since he left.

There was no evidence Ostrem had ever worked for Walmart, said spokesman Ragan Dickens.

Witnesses said the shooter walked calmly into the Thornton Walmart late Wednesday, opened fire and fled.

Marlena and Jason Fobb said they were paying for a vacuum and contact lenses when a man at a nearby register was shot.

“We were all looking at each other like, oh gosh this is it,” Marlena Fobb said.

The couple and others hid in a small storage room, she said. When officers arrived, they told them to “hurry and run” and not look at bodies, she added.



Associated Press writers Tatiana Flowers, Nicholas Riccardi and Colleen Slevin contributed to this report.

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17 thoughts on “‘Hostile Loner’ Arrested In Wal-Mart Shootings

  1. AWWMD Angry white male of mass destruction the most deadliest threat to our society since the nuclear bomb responsible for the deaths of billions over the centuries the ONE TRUE TERRORIST of our world and way of life

  2. specialt757 on said:

    All these 2nd amend rights and NRA card carrying junkies that want to make sure everyone and ANYONE can open carry guns everywhere they go, OWN THIS! They want to make sure they can buy as many guns and ammo as possible with no limitations. However, in doing so, it’s also ensuring the insane can do the same. When you encounter one of these nuts, you better hope he don’t shoot you and your family before you can pull your gun from underneath your front seat or out of your pocket. Remember they came to cause harm you didn’t.
    Unfortunately, we’ll going to hear about another one in a few days. One nut after another, they just want to make the news. But instead of this being a wake-up call for our government, it’s fallen on deaf ears. Anytime a congressman/senator can be shot at a baseball game and he’s not looking to change the law, and as long as the NRA is funding these campaigns, there aint no chance of new regulations happening. Y’all gun junkies own this.

  3. where are all the black haters who usually respond here? Dr. Larry and friends. White terrorist at it’s best, done on 45’s watch. it is his fault, he has let these fools think it is ok, carry your gun, shoot to kill, he will pay your bond…not…lol.

  4. Passing Through! on said:

    He’s being called a “disgruntled loner” So you’ll hear nothing about terrorism or white on white crime. Two terms that will never apply to a white person.

    • Yep, I don’t hear names like “animal” coming from the wh. Nothing about gun control either. Nothing that will make American’s feel safe. Like I said the other day, the best we can hope for is that we’re never in the wrong place at the wrong time, no safe havens.

    • specialt757 on said:

      Oh and another thing we’ll never hear, is #45 “owning” these murders like they did to Obama. Every mass or multiple murder committed was his fault, he was somehow connected in some way. I hear nothing about that now, I wonder why.

    • The victims who died were all Hispanic but reports say he wasn’t targeting them;otherwise the shooting would also be a hate crime. He should be brought up on terror charges even if Ostrem was a “Hostile Loner.”


  6. Another home grown terriost. Is 45 going to recommend the death penalty for this white murderer like he did the Muslim?? Not!! He just goes after black and brown people with his tired looking ass. He’s not going to make it another yr. this clown is waaaaaay over his head.

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