Vail shooting details emerge

Victim tells police he had an altercation with murder suspect

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— Murder suspect Richard “Rossi” Moreau told police after he was apprehended Saturday on suspicion of shooting four people at a West Vail bar that he thought he was headed either to jail for “a lot of time” or a mental institute, according to an affidavit filed by Vail police.

“He stated that he believed he was in a lot of trouble,” states the affidavit, submitted by Vail Police Detective Jessica Mayes. “He also said that the reason he thought he was in trouble was because he thought he killed someone.”

Moreau, 63, of Vail is suspected of first-degree murder in the shooting at the Sandbar in West Vail. One man, Gary Bruce Kitching, a Carbondale physician, was killed, and three others were injured.

Moreau told police that he recently had changed medications, which had negatively affected his mood, the document states, adding that Moreau said he takes medication for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. He told police that he takes Xanax and a medication to control nightmares, according to the affidavit.

He also said he had three drinks at the Sandbar and “half a bottle” of whiskey the day of the shooting, according to the document.

Police interviewed a man named Justin Center who said he had an altercation with Moreau earlier in the night, and Moreau was later removed from the bar by staff, according to the affidavit. Center said he then went out the west door to smoke a cigarette and saw Moreau running from the east side of the building, the document states.

Center said he saw Moreau pull a handgun from his waistband, raise the gun and fire shots at him, the affidavit states. Center fled and was shot in the thigh, according to the police document.

Moreau re-entered the bar and shot the final two victims of the shootings, Kitching and 63-year-old Vail resident Jim Lindley, police said. Kitching and Lindley were shot multiple times, authorities said.

Lindley’s condition was described as critical but stable in a Denver hospital Thursday. He is the only shooting victim who remains hospitalized.

Witnesses said the other victim, a 29-year-old Sandbar employee, was the first person shot and was shot as Moreau was being escorted out of the bar. Authorities think Moreau fired 10 to 13 shots.

Police found Moreau’s blue Dodge Durango parked in a handicapped space in front of the Sandbar, according to the affidavit.

Judge Katharine T. Sullivan ruled Monday that urine, blood, hair and DNA evidence can be taken from Moreau to determine what drugs were in his system.

Prosecutors have subpoenaed Moreau’s military records from the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, filings show. In 2006, Moreau told the Vail Daily he served two tours of duty in Vietnam, in 1968 and 1969, was an Army Ranger, and watched a friend die in his arms during combat. Symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder emerged in 1979, Moreau said.

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