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Coroner: Colorado gunman killed himself

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  • NEW: Murray railed against church founder Rev. Ted Haggard in online posts
  • Shooter who killed four on Sunday also killed himself, coroner says
  • Gunman Matthew Murray died after shootout with volunteer security guard
  • Coroner says Murray was shot multiple times by security guard
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(CNN) -- Matthew Murray, the man who police say shot and killed four people at two separate locations in Colorado on Sunday, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, the coroner's office said Tuesday.

A former roommate took this photo of Matthew Murray performing in a 2002 Christmas program.

"The death of Matthew Murray has been ruled a suicide," the El Paso County Coroner's Office said in a statement.

"It should be noted that he was struck multiple times by the security officer, which put him down. He then fired a single round killing himself," the statement said.

Police Sgt. Skip Arms told The Associated Press that Murray shot himself in the head.

Police say before Murray, 24, went down, he shot and killed sisters Stephanie and Rachael Works, ages 18 and 16, and wounded their father, who was in or near their car in the parking lot of New Life Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Murray also wounded two other people with his assault rifle as he re-entered the church.

One of them, Larry Bourbonnais, said he tried to distract the shooter before security guard Jeanne Assam made her move. Video Watch Bourbonnais describe the scene at New Life »

"I'm telling you right now, she's the hero, not me. It was the bravest thing I have ever seen," Bourbonnais said. "She had no cover. He fired -- I heard him fire three. I heard her fire three. And she just began -- she kept yelling 'Surrender!' the whole time. And she just walked forward, like she's walking to her car in the parking lot, firing the whole time."

Bourbonnais said when he and Assam reached Murray, "he had slumped backwards, slid down on the floor, and expired."

The assault at New Life Church came about 12 hours after Murray shot and killed two people and wounded two others at the Youth With a Mission center in Arvada, Colorado, 80 miles away, police said. Learn more about the shooting victims »

A memorial service was scheduled for Wednesday for the two staff members there who were killed, Tiffany Johnson, 26, and Philip Crouse, 24, according to the group's co-founder, Peter Warren.

Brady Boyd, senior pastor of New Life Church, told reporters Tuesday he and his church had already forgiven Murray, even though he is still angry about what happened.

"But being angry and being unforgiving are two different things," Boyd said.

On Tuesday a source close to New Life Church, citing financial records, told CNN that Murray's family has contributed various amounts to it over the years.

The Rev. Phil Abeyta, Murray's uncle, joined a prayer session Tuesday night at his church, His Love Fellowship, AP reported. About 70 people prayed for the victims, the Murray family and Matthew Murray. According to AP, Abeyta said the family spent the day "in reflection and prayer for the families of the victims and those who were injured."

Boyd said his congregation would hold its regular services as scheduled next weekend.

Boyd said members will hold a family meeting Wednesday. "We will gather to worship, pray, mourn and begin our healing process," a statement said.

"If we could find some motive, some written motive or some recorded motive that he gave, it would be helpful for the healing process, sure, because that is the question: Why? Why, why, why is going to be the number one question that we answer," Boyd said.

Some answers may be gleaned from a warning Murray posted online just 90 minutes before he went to New Life Church.

The message attributed to Matthew Murray -- using the screen name "nghtmrchld26" -- mirrored the wording of a warning posted in 1999 by Eric Harris before he and Dylan Klebold went on a shooting rampage at Columbine High School.

"I'm coming for EVERYONE soon and I WILL be armed to the @.%$ teeth and I WILL shoot to kill," the posting obtained by CNN affiliate KUSA-TV read. This was the same wording used by Harris, with the exception of symbols used to replace an expletive.

Murray, who lived in Englewood, Colorado, just 13 miles from the Columbine campus, titled his entry "You Christians brought this on yourselves." It was published on a Web site for people who had left Pentecostal and fundamentalist religious groups.

The message, first reported Monday by KUSA-TV, was taken offline by the site's administrator after he talked to the FBI, but has since been put back online.

Joe Istre, president of the Association of Former Pentecostals, said the posts were restored so people could "try and make sense of all this chaos."

The posting on the online forum, maintained by the group, indicated it was published at 11:03 a.m. on Sunday -- two hours before the shooting at New Life Church and about 11 hours after the shooting at Youth With A Mission.

In earlier postings, "nghtmrchld26" railed against the Rev. Ted Haggard, founder of New Life Church.

Haggard was fired last year after a former male prostitute alleged he had a three-year cash-for-sex relationship with him. Haggard admitted buying methamphetamine from the man but said he didn't use it.


In a post from March, Murray complained that because of his mother's concerns about video games and popular music, "I remember having to listen to everything in secret, at very low volume levels or with headphones, whether it was video games, TV, DVDs, or music/radio."

"My mother would search EVERYWHERE on a regular basis. You'd have thought I was hiding methamphetamines (which her favorite pastor, Ted Haggard was found guilty of) or something serious, but it was all over DVDs, CDs, and video games," Murray wrote. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

CNN's Eric Marrapodi contributed to this report.

Copyright 2007 CNN. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Associated Press contributed to this report.

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