Authorities named the shooter as Teodoro Macias, a 28-year-old who was romantically involved with one of the victims, Sandra Ibarra, also 28, for roughly a year and was livid about not being included on the guest list.
“When he wasn’t invited to a family gathering the suspect responded by opening fire and killing six victims before taking his own life,” Vince Niski, the Colorado Springs Police Chief said while speaking at a press conference on Tuesday.
According to Lieutenant Joe Fabbiele, Mr Macias was a problematic partner.
“At the core of this horrendous act is domestic violence,” Mr Niksi said in the press conference. “The suspect, who was in a relationship with one of the victims, displayed power and control issues in this relationship.”
Macias had attempted to cut off Ibarra from her family and sought to stop her going to family social engagements, according to Frabbiele.
He also said that no prior reports of domestic abuse incidents had been filed with the police.
The shooting happened at a family birthday celebration on Sunday, just after midnight, at a mobile home.
The children in attendance did not suffer physical injuries, but police said three children between the ages of 2 and 11 witnessed the shooting.
“Today we find ourselves mourning the loss of lives and praying solemnly for those who were injured and those who lost family members in a senseless act of violence on Sunday morning,” the mayor of Colorado Spring John Suthers wrote in a statement.
He also mentioned the responders: “We think too of the emergency personnel who responded to a horrific scene and we keep them in our prayers today.”
The six shooting victims were named by police as Sandra Ibarra, Jose Ibarra, Mayra Ibarra de Perez, Melvin Perez, Jose Gutierrez and Joanna Cruz.
The Governor of the state, Jared Polis issued a statement on the tragedy. He said it was “devastating, especially as many of us are spending the day celebrating the women in our lives who have made us the people we are today.”
When asked for a comment by The Denver Post, the family said they were not able to talk about it yet.
“Our family is not ready to release a statement at this time. Please allow us some time to grieve.”