Police respond to the scene of a barricaded man, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2013 in Aurora, Colo. Four people, including an armed suspect, died during an hours-long police standoff Saturday at a Colorado townhome, authorities said. (AP Photo/The Denver Post, Andy Cross)
The wife of a Colorado gunman who killed three relatives in his Aurora home Saturday escaped by leaping from a second-floor window before she called cops, her sister said today.
Shooter Sonny Archuleta, 33, was later killed by cops after a six-hour standoff, but not before his wife, Stephanie, dodged his bullets to run and get help.
Corinne Wurzbacher, 30, said her stepsister Stephanie said that Archuleta was spraying the house with bullets.
“It wasn’t just here or there,” said Wurzbacher, who spoke with a family member on the phone about the incident. “Stephanie said she couldn’t understand how the bullets missed her. She’s faced with all of this grief and guilt.
“He just went nuts. I don’t think he cared who he hit. He was in a really bad state of mind that night. He was really low. It was a drug fit. He wasn’t right in the head. I can only think that they tried to confront from.”
Cops said it’s still unclear why Archuleta, 33, snapped early Saturday morning and killed his wife’s stepfather, her sister and her sister’s boyfriend in the Aurora townhouse.
Wurzbacher, whose father and Stephanie's step father, Anthony Ticali, was killed in the shooting, said the two had clashed before, and that Archuleta threatened Ticali last year with a gun.
“My father and I talked a great deal about the problems he was having,” Wurzbacher said about her dad, who lived with Archuleta and Stephanie.
“He and my father butt heads. He was violent. He had gun charges and one of them involved an altercation with my father.”
The shooting took place just miles away from an Aurora movie theater where 12 people were killed and 70 were wounded during a massacre at a July screening of “The Dark Knight Rises.”
Testimony begins Monday to determine if the accused shooter in that incident, James Holmes, will stand trial.
Archuleta lost his own brother, Patricio, 34, to gun violence only a year ago, authorities said.
Patricio was shot to death in a Denver parking lot on Sept. 3, 2011.
Patricio Archuleta, who had a criminal record of drug and assault charges, was released from prison in 2008 after serving 15 months for obstructing public peace and order and vehicular eluding.
Following that shooting, Sonny took to Twitter to express his grief: “My brother Pat was murdered in Denver, Colorado on Friday September 3 at 1:45am. Pray for my family and that Jehovah well get the glory from this.”