Fort Carson Soldier's Murder Unsolved Almost a Year Later

folded flag
A folded flag is presented during a ceremony. (Brent C. Powell/U.S. Army Reserve)

Family, friends and hundreds of strangers lined a Michigan highway last year to welcome home Fort Carson Spc. Braden Peltier, as he made his way from Detroit to West Branch, Mich., for the final time after he was fatally shot in Colorado Springs.

Many residents gathered on overpasses with flags to honor the soldier.

The outpouring Braden Peltier received on his journey home "took away some of the sting" from his son's death, his father, Jay Peltier, said.

"Small towns, they take care of their own," he said.

But so far, his experience with the Colorado Springs police as they have worked to investigate Braden's death has been lacking.

"I hear little to nothing from the police," said Peltier, explaining he has talked with police only a handful of times, and on only one of those occasions did the police call him.

The shooting, shortly before 4 a.m. March 26, 2023, was one of several at the after-hours nightclub at 2727 Palmer Park Blvd. During May, another shooting in a parking lot near the building killed Ja'lyn Tyre Lagrue, 20. An arrest was made in Lagrue's case.

The large building is home to a flea market and a cannabis dispensary, with a large warehouse space on one side.

The two young men killed at the nightclub were among the 34 homicides in Colorado Springs last year. Among that group, 20 were men under 35 who died in shootings.

Peltier said his son, 23, was protecting someone else during the encounter that also injured one other person, but he did not want to hurt the investigation by sharing more details about what happened.

Lt. Brian Cummings said CSPD could not comment on the case.

Peltier would like to see justice for his hard-working son, who wanted to become an Army Ranger.

"He set very lofty goals for himself," he said.

The nearly lifelong Michigander enlisted in 2020 and he was working as an artilleryman with the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, his service record shows. Former commander of the team Stephen Capehart said in a statement at the time that Braden's compassion for his fellow soldiers would be missed.

Braden followed his stepdad, grandfather and great-grandfather and other men in his family into the military. It was work that took him to Poland in 2022 and helped him mature, his father said.

"The weight that those young and women carry on their shoulders is incredible," Peltier said.

An old soul, who understood people, but wasn't drawn to books, Peltier said his son "learned all of life's lessons the hard way."

Braden was also an avid outdoorsman who loved hunting, fishing and camping.

To mark the anniversary of his son's death, Peltier expects to go trout fishing.

Crime Stoppers is offering a $1,000 reward for information that could lead to an arrest in Braden Peltier's case.

Tipsters can call 719-634-7867.


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