A bartender at Club Q, the Colorado Springs gay nightclub where a mass shooter killed five people and wounded 25 over the weekend, said he felt “like a fish trapped in a barrel” when he saw the gun.
Michael Anderson said in an emotional interview with MSNBC that Saturday had been fun and high-energy until shots rang out and he spotted a gun barrel poke into the patio room where he was hiding.
“I saw just the tip of it and it was at that point that I legitimately thought I was about to get shot,” Anderson said. “I didn’t know. I felt like a fish trapped in a barrel.”
He continued: “I didn’t know where to go. I didn’t have my phone, I didn’t have anything, and so I was just so scared that I wouldn’t be able to talk to my mom or anybody.”
Anderson was unhurt in the shooting. Two fellow bartenders were killed, including Daniel Davis Aston, a transgender man, and Derrick Rump, a co-owner of the bar, according to The Gazette, Colorado Springs’ newspaper.
El Paso County District Attorney Michael Allen said investigators hadn’t decided yet whether to prosecute the shootings as a hate crime.
Anderson described the terrifying moment he spotted “the silhouette or shadow” of the gunman and heard gunfire. Glass flew “all around,” he said, and he ran to the patio and hid.
He said he huddled with a co-worker and another woman, praying for the shooting to stop, when he saw the gun barrel.
“Ten seconds or so later, it got silent,” he said.
Police said at least two people in the bar “confronted and fought” the killer, preventing further bloodshed.
“We owe them a great debt of thanks,” Colorado Springs Police Chief Adrian Vasquez said Sunday.
Watch a clip of Anderson’s interview with MSNBC below.