Police: Motive, link between shooter and victims still unclear in Cloquet hotel shooting

Three weeks after an incident at a hotel in Cloquet left three people dead, investigators are still working to determine what spurred the shootings.

Cloquet Police Chief Derek Randall said Monday the investigation of a shooting at the Super 8 on Jan. 8 remains active.

Police previously said that officers were called to the hotel at around 6:30 p.m. after an employee found another employee who’d apparently been attacked. The employee was found to be suffering from a gunshot wound and later died at a hospital. Police also found a man dead from a gunshot wound in a car in the parking lot, and a man dead from a gunshot wound outside the hotel.

The department says the slain employee, 22-year-old Shellby Trettel, and man in the car, 35-year-old Patrick Jeffrey Roers, were shot by 32-year-old Nicholas Elliot Lenius, who then fatally shot himself.

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Randall says investigators “are working to uncover all relevant details surrounding this incident,” but haven’t currently found a clear motive for the shootings or a link between Lenius and Trettel and Roers. The chief added final autopsy reports are expected to be finished in four to six weeks, and those may provide more clarity.

“As we continue our investigation, I assure the community we remain committed to transparency and justice. We will provide additional updates as soon as we get more information and after consulting with our detectives and the county attorney’s office,” Randall said in a prepared statement.