Matthew Riehl, the Colorado shooter who had killed a Douglas County deputy and wounding six others on New Year’s Eve, claimed in a video that he was running for Douglas County Sheriff as a Libertarian a week before Christmas.
Riehl had also made “veiled threats against professors of the [University of Wyoming] law school professors” in late October according to the Denver Post, that included much vulgarity and detectives from the university claimed the nonsensical rantings were signs of mental illness.
The Libertarian Party of Colorado released a statement denouncing the shooter and explaining that he had not registered with the party nor had anyone within the party known of his involvement before his declaration to run for office.
The Libertarian Party of Colorado’s Full statement can be found below:
DOUGLAS COUNTY, CO: It is with great sadness that the Libertarian Party of Colorado and the Libertarian Party of Douglas County learned of the fatal shooting of Douglas County Deputy Zackari Parrish as well as the wounding of others and offers their condolences to those families starting out a new year on such a tragic note.
The alleged shooter, Matthew Riehl, claimed to be a “libertarian” candidate for the position of Douglas County Sheriff in a YouTube video released earlier this month. Mr. Riehl is not a member of the Libertarian Party and has no recorded involvement with the Party. He was not nominated or endorsed for any office, neither had the Libertarian Party of Colorado nor the Libertarian Party of Douglas ever heard of him prior to this incident.
All Libertarian candidates must be members of the Party and sign a statement of belief in the Party’s principles of non-aggression, limited government (if any), and respect for the rights of others. Libertarian Party of Colorado State Chair and Libertarian Party of Douglas County Chair Wayne Harlos stated:
The core of Libertarian philosophy is a belief in a peaceful means to political change and a repudiation of the initiation of physical force for political or social reasons. Ambushing any person and committing physical violence is as blatant a denial of the Party’s beliefs as any action can be. Ultimately this is not about politics but about an evil action that leaves several families in grief over death and injuries.
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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Caryn Ann Harlos at 561.523.2250 or email at CommunicationsDirector@LPColorado.org.