'We are heartbroken': Rochester-area native and ballet dancer dies in shooting at her Arizona home

·2 min read

This story is from the Arizona Republic, azcentral.com.

Ballet Arizona dancer Colleen Hoopes was shot and killed in her home early Friday morning. She was 25. Her husband was arrested in connection with the shooting.

“We are heartbroken to learn of the passing of Company Dancer Colleen Hoopes," said a statement on behalf of Ballet Arizona to The Arizona Republic. "Colleen was an integral part of the Ballet Arizona family and will be missed deeply. She was passionate and dedicated to her art form and a bright light to us all. Our hearts go out to her loved ones.”

Tempe police responded to Hoopes' residence after her husband, Christopher Hoopes, called 911 at 3:30 a.m. to report a shooting. Hoopes, 36, said he woke up startled and fired his gun twice before realizing he had shot his wife, according to court documents.

Colleen Hoopes was taken to a hospital with two gunshot wounds in her chest. She was pronounced dead at 4:10 a.m., according to court documents.

Court documents say evidence supports the report that the shooting occurred in the bedroom, where two cartridge casings were found and damage was visible on the bedroom wall.

A recording from a neighbor provided audio of the incident, according to court documents. Two separate shots could be heard, roughly two seconds apart.

Christopher Hoopes has been charged with one count of second-degree murder and one count of discharging a firearm within city limits. Bond has been set at $750,000 and a court date has been set for Thursday.

Who was Colleen Hoopes?

Hoopes joined Ballet Arizona in 2017 after completing professional ballet training at the Draper Center for Dance Education in Rochester, New York, and attending Indiana University's Jacobs School of Music.

Hoopes participated in several Ballet Arizona performances, including Ib Andersen's "Swan Lake," "Sleeping Beauty," "The Nutcracker," "Cinderella" and "Eroica," as well as Bournonville’s "Napoli" and Balanchine’s "Square Dance," "Western Symphony," "La Sonnambula," "Theme and Variations," and "Symphony in Three Movements."

A Facebook post from the IU Jacobs School of Music Ballet Department read, “We mourn the tragic loss of IUBT alumna Colleen (Buckley) Hoopes. Colleen graduated in 2017 with a Bachelor of Science in Ballet and an Outside Field in Political Science. She went on to dance at Rochester City Ballet and then at Ballet Arizona."

"She shone a bright light at IUBT, pouring kindness and passion into her dancing and life alike. Our faculty and alumni grieve her passing and send our love, support, and condolences to her family and friends. Her parents, Deb and Ed Buckley, hope to found a ballet scholarship in her name.”

This article originally appeared on Rochester Democrat and Chronicle: Rochester native Colleen Hoopes shot and killed in her Arizona home