Suspect in UCCS murders arrested, Colorado Springs police announce

Celie Rain Montgomery and Samuel Knopp UCCS shooting
Posted at 12:39 PM, Feb 19, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-20 13:29:30-05

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A suspect wanted on two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of two people in a dorm room at the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs has been arrested.

The suspect was identified as 25-year-old Nicholas Jordan of Detroit, Michigan. The Colorado Springs Police Department made the announcement in a social media post on Monday.

CSPD arrested Jordan without incident near the 4900 block of Cliff Point Circle East in Colorado Springs Monday morning before 8 a.m. UCCS confirmed Jordan is a current student at the university. And Jordan was roommates with 24-year-old Samuel Knopp of Parker — one of the people he's accused of killing, the Colorado Springs Police Department confirmed to Scripps News Colorado Springs.

Jordan is scheduled to appear in court on Tuesday at 1:30 p.m., according to El Paso County Sheriff's Office documents.

The two victims were identified Sunday as Knopp and 26-year-old Celie Rain Montgomery of Pueblo.

Knopp was a senior at UCCS. He studied music and was a “beloved member of the Visual and Performing Arts department,” said a university spokesperson. Montgomery was not a student. The relationship between the two is unclear.

Celie Rain Montgomery and Samuel Knopp UCCS shooting
Pictured: Samuel Knopp (left) and Celie Rain Montgomery (right)

The victims were found dead when police responded to a report of a shooting around 6 a.m. Friday. Police said the coroner’s office will determine how they died, but each person was shot at least once.

A lockdown across campus lasted for about 90 minutes and later was isolated to a student apartment complex. Colorado Springs Christian School was also put on lockdown as a precaution following the reports of gunfire on the college campus.

Police said they believe the shooting was an isolated incident and said there is no threat to the public.

"Investigative efforts so far continue to indicate this is an isolated incident between parties that were known to one another and not a random attack against the school or other students at the university," police said in a news release.

Classes and activities were canceled at UCCS Monday following the shooting, but a “healing walk” was organized for students and the broader community to come together and remember Knopp and Montgomery. After a sad and scary weekend, students at the walk said it was an important moment for their classmates to process their emotions.

The walk ended at El Pomar Plaza, which features a UCCS mountain lion statue in its center. Participants quickly covered it in roses and surrounded it with written messages in honor of the victims. Willow Kitchens, who said she knew Knopp and had recently gone shopping for a new suit with him, wrote the words “suited up.”

“He definitely knew what suited him,” Kitchens said. “He had his personality, and he knew what it was. He knew who he was.”

Kitchens, emotional as she recalled some of her favorite memories with Knopp, said the healing walk event was a “beautiful” way to carry on his legacy.

“It was a beautiful day. I think everything we did, you know, laying flowers on the mountain lion, is just gorgeous,” she said. “Everybody just bringing it together — it’s just gorgeous.”

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