A chilling 47-minute film has surfaced that appears to show the preparation and motivation for last December’s shooting that left five people dead and two injured, including a Lakewood police officer. The film, titled Warhorse, is for sale on the killer’s website, which advertises his books.
Selling the film doesn’t sit well with Jeremy Costilow, who was mentioned 100 times in Lyndon McLeod’s Sanction trilogy, and narrowly missed being killed that day. “Nobody should be making money off this. It’s terrible,” Costilow told The Denver Gazette. “I know people are fascinated by killers, but I don’t think anyone should own this movie.”
Not much is known about how the movie Warhorse was made. A Christmas wreath decorating a downtown building hints it was filmed in Denver during the holidays last year. The killer sent his film on an SD card to his girlfriend in New Orleans with a note and permission to sell it to make money. According to the woman, who would only give her name as “Anne”, it was dated December 27.
Amanda Knight, a friend of McLeod’s who tipped off the police about her a year before the murders, helps sell the film, to help Anne recover the money and property she lost. A statement on the website says “profits from this film go to victims of crime.”
Knight knows people criticize her for selling out the film, but she said McLeod’s friends were also traumatized by her murderous ways. “People have to heal. People have to survive. We’re not rich,” Knight said.
Jimmy Maldonado, who was injured in the killer’s first stop at a South Broadway tattoo shop, saw a still from the film showing Lyndon McLeod dressed in tactical gear.
“He was wearing the same helmet that was in the movie,” he told The Denver Gazette. “At first I thought it was the police who shot me.”
He said McLeod was wearing black when he walked through the door and killed his wife, Alyssa Gunn-Maldonado, 35, and his wife’s friend, Alicia Cardenas, 44, the store owner. Maldonado was shot in the shoulder, fled out the back door and hid under a car in the back parking lot as the killer tracked him down and then gave up.
Within the next hour, McLeod would go on to kill three more people: Michael Swinyard, 67, Danny Scofield, 38; and Sarah Steck, 28. Friday was a tough day for Maldonado, as it would have been Gunn-Maldonado’s 36th birthday.
McLeod is the only character and narrator in the film. It’s a hodgepodge of quick stills, drawing-video images, animal skulls, totems and Civil War references. In the background, a male voiceover narrates Ghengis Khan and Jesse James overlaid with scenes of McLeod riding a chopper motorcycle through the streets of Denver and apparently stalking at least two of his possible targets from the front seat of a vehicle.
The film displays apocalyptic handwritten messages about revenge and murder, as well as videos of McLeod dressed for battle. Tactical gear, a black helmet covering his face resembles official police gear. A section of the footage shows the body of an armed person dressed as a SWAT officer with the words “police” across the chest in white.
Costilow thinks he would have been killed if not for his suspicious girlfriend. He told The Denver Gazette that McLeod showed up at the door of his home, which is connected to his tattoo business, around 5:30 p.m. on the evening of December 27, disguised as a delivery man. “He was wearing a big blue postal-looking jacket, a hat with a red light on it, and he was holding a package with my name typed on it,” Costilow said.
Chelsea Matthews, who was holding the couple’s baby girl, shut the door on McLeod and the young family rushed to a nearby tattoo shop. They could hear banging on their wooden front door as a crazed McLeod smashed it with a hammer, entered, and shot at the walls. He then set fire to their vehicle and drove off.
His ruthless rampage involved seven more stops from Denver to Lakewood in just over an hour, including a shootout with Denver police, a Cheesman Park high-rise murder, three murders at two tattoo parlors, a murder in a hotel and even an impromptu drink. in a bar.
Lyndon McLeod’s rampage was eventually stopped by Lakewood Police Officer Ashley Ferris. He shot her in the abdomen and she shot herself as she fell. He died of a gunshot wound. Ferris is recovering.
“Anne” gave The Denver Gazette permission to show short excerpts from Warhorse. Although the film is professionally produced, the identity of the video crew is unknown.
According to Gazette partner 9News, at least two of those people were named in a dystopian novel McLeod wrote under the pen name Roman McCray called “Sanction.” In the book, the main character, Lyndon McLeod, kills people for revenge in a bizarre insight into his actual rampage.
Knight told The Denver Gazette that in his final months, the gunman was transforming into the murderous and vengeful lead character he created in Sanction. “He had a dentist in Denver file his teeth into the fangs,” she said, adding that he had tattooed the tops of his fingers spelling SANC on one hand and TION on the other hand. ‘other.
In Warhorse, McLeod drinks from a highball in a fancy hotel room and opens a briefcase full of $100 bills, which Knight says is money he emptied from his girlfriend Anne’s savings.
“It was $20,000 that she won’t get back,” said Knight, who added that the pickup truck and black motorcycle McLeod was driving the night of the murders also belonged to Anne. She said she would never see them again as they are being held by law enforcement.
Denver and Lakewood police told the Gazette they are aware of the film and will review it as part of their investigation into the murders. The FBI did not respond to an email.