A 29-year-old man was slashed to death in the parking lot of Torchy's Tacos in downtown Denver, Colorado at 12:39 AM on Tuesday morning. Witnesses referred to the suspect as a man in "white, clown-type makeup with black streaks on his face," according to a report by the Denver Police. The assailant was allegedly sporting "a glove with blades on the end of each finger." They estimated the blades to be two to three inches long.
Following the incident, the clown-faced man was seen hopping aboard a scooter and riding away into the night.
Shortly thereafter, someone who fit the attacker's description was spotted on a High Activity Location Observation (HALO) camera a few blocks away at a Denver Public School, throwing what looked to be a knife in the bushes. This was later confirmed when police discovered that knife covered in blood.
Sometime later, a man covered in blood and clown makeup was seen riding a scooter near the busy Denver intersection of West Alameda Avenue and Lipan Street. He was subsequently arrested in connection with the parking lot murder.
The suspect has since been identified by the police as 35-year-old Christian Lee Gulzow, a local death metal vocalist. Online, Gulzow goes by the names Christöf Gülzow or Nürüm Bellüm. He frequently posts photos and videos of himself wearing makeup and sporting gloves with extended and pointed fingertips—both of which seem to match the descriptions made by the witnesses of the murder.
Torchy's Tacos was closed at the time of this bizarre altercation. The Austin-based taco business had recently replaced an Arby's, which had gained a local reputation for late-night shootings and murders.
According to witnesses from across the street, the parking lot was empty save for the victim, who attempted to flee before being pursued by the clown. The victim tried to fight back, witnesses said, but ultimately collapsed in the corner of the parking lot.
The cause of death was later identified as "a single stab wound to the throat."
Police say that Gulzow "provided a different account of what happened" than what was shared by witnesses. In his testimony, Gulzow claimed the victim originally attacked him, rather than the other way around. He added that he was trying to prevent his scooter from being stolen, and that the victim may have fallen on one of Gulzow's "spiked wrist bracelets."
According to the police report, when Gulzow was asked if he had stabbed the victim, he said, "he did not know."
Gulzow has yet to be charged. He is currently being held for Investigation of First Degree Murder.
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This article has been updated with photos and more information about Christian Lee Gulzow.