Englewood homicide suspect was neighbor of victim, heavily armed, affidavit says

Alleged shooter is identified as 30-year-old Quoc Van Nguyen


The man accused of shooting and killing a woman at her southwest Englewood home Wednesday night was her neighbor and was heavily armed at the time of his apprehension minutes later, according to an arrest affidavit. 

Quoc Van Nguyen, 30, allegedly shot and killed Darlene Grass, 68, from outside her Englewood home at 4395 S. Elati St.

Grass' 41-year-old roommate was with her when she was shot, according to the affidavit, and called police around 9:58 p.m. Wednesday.

Officers arrived in the area and found Nguyen running westbound on West Radcliff Avenue. He was arrested just south of Grass' home on the corner of Elati and Radcliff, according to the affidavit.

At the time of his arrest, Nguyen was wearing a tactical vest and had on him a rifle with a magazine and rounds inside, a pistol, a gun belt with a pistol holder and extra rifle magazines, the affidavit says. 

Grass' roommate, according to the affidavit, told police that he and Grass saw the silhouette of a person who came by their front patio. Grass had turned on the patio light and her roommate was holding her arm to help steady her when he heard multiple shots fired. 

The shots hit Grass in her head and arm, the affidavit says, and she was found by police at the threshold of her front door, where she was pronounced dead at 10:09 p.m. Officers believe the shots came from a rifle angled below the porch and going upward to the house, according to the affidavit. 

A neighbor's doorbell camera captured footage of a man who met the description of Nguyen running southbound in the Delaware/Elati alley that turns westbound onto West Radcliff Avenue. It is unknown if this footage was from before or after the shooting as it had no timestamp, according to the affidavit.

Another neighbor told officers he saw a man with the same description as Nguyen run from the alley into a garage at the Nguyen home across the street from the victim's home. 

Officers did a sweep of the Nguyen home where they found three or four rifles by a closet, a rifle inside the closet, a rifle on a bed, two pistol magazines on a desk in the northeast bedroom upstairs and firearm equipment in the same bedroom, the affidavit says. 

Inside the home was Nguyen's mother, father, wife and 2-year-old child. Nguyen's family gave police consent for the search, according to the affidavit. 

Nguyen's mother, father and wife all gave the same account to officers of the events that night before the shooting: The family ate dinner together between 7 and 8 p.m. and, after dinner, they played with Nguyen's child.  Nguyen's parents went to sleep around 9 p.m., they told officers according to the affidavit, and were awakened about an hour later by loud bangs. 

Nguyen's mother, father and wife said Nguyen had exhibited no signs of suicidal or homicidal ideations, did not suffer from any mental illness and took no medications, the affidavit says. None of the family members reported that Nguyen had any problems with neighbors, and his mother told officers he is "always very friendly and helpful with the people who live close by."

None of Nguyen's family was aware of his guns, according to what they told police, with his wife quoted in the affidavit as saying "when he's with me he doesn't have any weapons." 

Nguyen reportedly did not tell officers anything the night of the shooting, according to the affidavit. He told police he invoked his Fifth Amendment rights and did not want to talk about the shooting. 

englewood police, englewood shooting


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