‘Agitated’ Armed Colorado Man Who Made Comments About Boulder Mass Shooting Arrested

Adam Vannoy was stopped in Nebraska with six firearms, two wigs and a bulletproof vest, an affidavit states.

April 05, 2021
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Adam Vannoy, 40, was arrested after he said he was surprised his friends didn’t suspect he was the Boulder mass shooter, according to federal court documents. [via Lancaster County (Neb.) Sheriff's Office]

Adam Vannoy, 40, was arrested after he said he was surprised his friends didn’t suspect he was the Boulder mass shooter, according to federal court documents. [via Lancaster County (Neb.) Sheriff's Office]

By: Aaron Rasmussen

An Iowa gun store may have helped stop a tragedy by preventing a Colorado man from purchasing a powerful weapon after he made some disturbing remarks, a federal affidavit shows.

On March 23, Adam Stuart Vannoy, 40, allegedly went to a Sportsman’s Warehouse in Ankeny, Iowa, and attempted to buy an AR-15-style rifle.

According to the court documents, Vannoy said he had 500 rounds of ammunition in his truck and “stated that he was surprised that his friends hadn’t called him to see if it was him in the mass shooting in Colorado,” where 21-year-old gunman Ahmad Al Aliwi Al-Issa killed 10 people at a King Soopers market in Boulder the day before.

“With the recent event of a mass shooting in Colorado and Vannoy’s statement, the gun store denied the sale and notified the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives,” the complaint reads.

At the time of the gun shop incident, Vannoy, a self-described firearms enthusiast, was free on bond after an arrest nine days earlier.

On March 14, Vannoy was driving erratically in Lancaster County, Nebraska, when a state patrol trooper pulled him over and allegedly spotted drug paraphernalia in his vehicle, the complaint notes.

A search of Vannoy’s vehicle turned up six firearms, including a Sig Sauer P365 and a loaded AM-15 rifle. Authorities also found a bulletproof vest and blanket, illegal silencer, ammunition, body camera, Air Force jumpsuit costume and two wigs, the affidavit states.

Vannoy allegedly told the trooper he was moving from Colorado because “his neighbors did not like him” and “he had a mental breakdown and quit his job,” according to the documents.


After his arrest, Vannoy “became increasingly agitated” while troopers transported him to the Lancaster County Jail and “said that he was going to use his time in jail to think about getting even with people,” the affidavit claims.

During the three days he spent incarcerated before being released on a $5,000 bond, the documents continue, Vannoy “made numerous threats toward guards, threatening to kill one of them, exposed his penis to the guards, and had thrown his feces from his cell into the common holding area.”

Following the Iowa gun shop incident, police rearrested Vannoy and charged him from the earlier Nebraska traffic stop with illegal possession of a firearm as an unlawful user of marijuana, according to the Associated Press.

A judge has ordered Vannoy be detained pending further proceedings.

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