(EL PASO COUNTY, Colo.) — The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office (EPSO) has confirmed that one of the victims in a double murder-suicide in Lorson Ranch on Dec. 19, called law enforcement for help the day before the murder.
According to EPSO, 27-year-old Vanessa Anderson called the EPSO non-emergency line on Dec. 18, and requested a “keep the peace” escort to retrieve her belongings from the suspect – 33-year-old Wilmer Soto. Anderson indicated to deputies that she wanted to retrieve her cell phone, which was in Soto’s name but she paid for it.
After a deputy spoke with Anderson and then separately with Soto, EPSO said there was no crime; therefore, the call was determined to be a property dispute between two people in a domestic relationship, which is a civil issue. EPSO said deputies “do not respond unless [they] have a civil order.”
The deputy who took the call gave Anderson information on how to seek a “Keep the Peace” order, which is a civil order request through the courts.
One day later, on the morning of Dec. 19, Soto allegedly killed Anderson and 26-year-old Autumn Kirkpatrick before taking his own life at a home in the 9800 block of Rubicon Drive, in the Lorson Ranch neighborhood. Their bodies were found inside the home after a barricaded suspect situation that caused a shelter-in-place order for more than two hours in the neighborhood.
Two GoFundMe campaigns have been verified, both raising money for the families the victims left behind. According to the campaigns, Vanessa Anderson leaves behind a 10-year-old daughter, and Autumn Kirkpatrick leaves behind a 6-year-old daughter.
Kirkpatrick was accompanying Anderson to the Lorson Ranch home to support her in leaving the relationship with Soto, the campaign said. That support and friendship is something that is echoed by a close friend of the two, who sent a statement to FOX21 News:
Vanessa and Autumn were two young women who were loved by many and will be missed by all. They made an impact on whomever they crossed paths with. Both of them were not only great mothers, but wonderful, funny, smart, talented, intelligent, beautiful, independent women. They let nothing get in their way, any obstacle life threw at them, they adapted and did everything they could to get past it. Especially when it came to their kids, whom they loved so much. Their daughters were their worlds, and their spirit will live on through them. They were always there for one another and for others the moment they were needed. Their contagious laughs and beautiful souls were felt and heard throughout any room they were in. It is tragic and devastating what happened to the two of them. They were an unbreakable bond, a perfect duo of best friends. They will be loved forever, and missed always. They were taken too soon from the life they were living. Rest in Peace to both of them.Kaylee Mitchell, personal friend of Vanessa Anderson and Autumn Kirkpatrick