2020 Colorado Officer-Involved Shootings

Police Shooting DenverPolice Shooting DenverColleen Slevin/AP
A Denver police officer stands at a roadblock on a street near the scene of a shooting in downtown Denver Monday, July 1, 2019.

This list compiles all officer-involved shootings in Colorado since Jan. 1, 2020. For the purposes of this list, an officer-involved shooting is defined as an incident where a police officer and/or suspect discharges a firearm.

There have been 28 officer-involved shootings so far in 2020. Nineteen people have died in those shootings.

Updated May 27, 2020 @ 7:15 a.m.

May

May 26 — Thornton police shot and killed a man Tuesday night after officers say the man and an officer exchanged gunfire. Authorities said around 11 p.m., an officer encountered a suspicious man in the parking lot of the Thornton Infrastructure Maintenance Center. The two exchanged gunfire and the man was pronounced dead at the scene. Police said they recovered a handgun at the scene and that no officers were injured.

May 25 — An off-duty Palmer Lake police officer was arrested on suspicion of shooting a colleague. Authorities responded to a shooting in a Sedalia home, where another Palmer Lake officer was found wounded, officials said. The Douglas County Sheriff's Office said 38-year-old Brian Saltzman was arrested on suspicion of second-degree assault, prohibited use of a weapon and reckless endangerment. The victim is in the hospital in stable condition. Saltzman was released on bond.

May 22 — A Teller County Sheriff's deputy shot and injured a suspect around 9 p.m. on Friday, May 22. Two deputies saw a man who matched the description of someone who was wanted for felony menacing near the intersection of County Road 94 and Teller County Road 32. According to a sheriff's office press release, the suspect pulled out a handgun and pointed it at the deputies. One of the deputies fired at least once and struck the suspect, who was then taken to the hospital with injuries. The two deputies have been placed on routine administrative leave. The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office is the lead investigative agency for this officer-involved shooting. 

May 15 — A Pueblo police officer shot and killed one suspect and injured another while investigating a stolen vehicle in the early morning, according to a press release from the department. The sedan was occupied by a male driver and a female passenger. The incident is still under investigation but at one point the officer was dragged by the stolen vehicle, according to the department. The officer fired and struck both the man and the woman. The man died at the scene. The woman is in serious condition at a hospital. The officer was transported to the hospital with minor injuries.

May 9 — A Colorado State Trooper shot and killed a suspect outside Grand Junction. The shooting happened on Highway 50 and 29 Road in Orchard Mesa, according to Mesa County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Blake White. The trooper was not hurt. District Attorney Dan Rubinstein announced later in May that Trooper Jason Wade will not face charges for killing 33-year-old Jayson Thompson. Rubinstein determined Wade acted in self-defense based on video and audio evidence and witness interviews, he said. An investigation found Thompson pulled a knife from his waistband and Wade shot him when Thompson lunged at him, authorities said.

May 9 — A man eluding police was shot and killed by Clear Creek County deputies after they say he emerged from the car he purposely set on fire and brandished a gun. No deputies were injured. Idaho Springs police attempted to stop a silver Saturn for traffic-related reasons, when the vehicle fled, according to Undersheriff Bruce Snelling with the Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Office. Idaho Springs police called off the pursuit, but about 10 minutes later, Clear Creek Deputy’s spotted the vehicle on Colorado 103 and pursed the Saturn again. Snelling said during the second pursuit, the suspect set the inside of his vehicle on fire. The car was stopped and the driver flashed a gun. Shots were fired, and the suspect was killed. The man was later identified as 57-year-old Darrin Jon Patterson. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

May 6 — Police shot and killed an armed suspect in Commerce City. According to police, Commerce City, Denver and Department of Corrections officers were looking for a male suspect. They encountered him in an apartment building parking lot near Rocky Mountain Arsenal. The man was wanted for a violent crime and was armed with a handgun, officials said. Shots were fired and he was hit multiple times. The man died at a hospital. No additional information about the shooting has been released.

May 3A man is dead after Sterling Police tried to pull him over. Sterling Police tried to pull over a vehicle after recognizing the driver in connection to a shooting that occurred April 30, according to police. The man sped off and Sterling officers followed. The chase ended in a crash. A Sterling officer fired at the man who died at the scene.

May 1 — Denver police shot a man on West Colfax Avenue, near Mile High stadium. The following day, Denver police confirmed the man died. Police later identified the man as 21-year-old William Lamont Debose. According to officials, the shooting took place in the parking lot of the Rodolfo “Corky” Gonzales Branch Library on West Colfax Avenue and Irving Street. Debose allegedly fled a traffic stop then stopped and got out of the vehicle near the library. Police approached Debose and a woman walking with him. He initially followed police directions but then ran back toward the parked car. He then pulled out a handgun from his waistband and pointed it toward an officer, prompting an officer to draw his gun and open fire, police said. Debose was struck multiple times and later died at a hospital. Police officials said officers at the scene recovered a loaded, semi-automatic 9mm next to Debose.

April

April 22 — An officer from the Baca County Sheriff's Office shot and killed a man while responding to a report of an armed suspect allegedly making threats. The incident took place at a home outside of Springfield in southeastern Colorado. An officer began to negotiate with the armed individual, later identified as 31-year-old Christopher Lawson, according to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. Several hours later, Lawson was shot after allegedly pointing a firearm at officers, CBI said. He was pronounced dead after receiving medical attention at the scene. No officers were injured.

April 19 — Colorado Springs officers shot and killed a man who pointed a rifle at them. The El Paso County Sheriff's Office said a woman called police to report a domestic disturbance around 10 p.m. Authorities say that when officers arrived at the scene, a man ran inside a home, grabbed a rifle and pointed it at them. Four officers then fired their weapons, striking the man. He was transported to a local hospital with serious injuries and later died. The man was later identified as 28-year-old Fort Carson soldier Sgt. Virgill Thorpe. He was a Cavalry Scout with the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division. The four officers involved in the shooting were placed on administrative leave. The officers were identified as Cpl. Joseph Somosky, Eddie Nassar, Kristofer Czajkowski and Charles Warren. No officers were injured.

April 9 — Two Kiowa County sheriff's deputies were involved in the fatal shooting of a man after a traffic stop. According to the Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, the deputies got into a confrontation with a man and the suspect was tased before being fatally shot. No law enforcement officers were injured. The man was later identified as 39-year-old Zachary Gifford. The officers, Undersheriff Tracy Weisenhorn and Deputy Quentin Stump, were put on administrative leave.

March

March 17 — Grand Junction police shot and killed a man they say had a gun outside his residence. Officers responded to a call of a man brandishing a knife and gun at people playing basketball at a middle school. Authorities say attempts to reach the man inside his residence failed and that when he finally came out of his house, he had what appeared to be a gun. Police then shot the man, who later died at a hospital. No officers were injured. No names of the deceased man nor the officers involved have been released.

March 14 — A Pueblo County Sheriff's deputy shot and killed a carjacking suspect. According to the sheriff's office, deputies responded to a report from a woman who said a man pointed a gun at her and took her car near the Pueblo Youth Center. After a police chase through downtown, the suspect, later identified as 20-year-old Jesse Cedillo, crashed the stolen vehicle a light pole, police said. According to authorities, the suspect fled and officers pursued. At one point, police said the man advanced toward deputies with a gun in his hand. A deputy fired and the suspect died at the scene. No officers were injured.

March 2Fountain police shot a man, Tyler Frisch, who was suspected of car theft in Colorado Springs. Police said they were responding to reports of a stolen vehicle when they reportedly told the man to get out of a car. The armed man got out and ran into a residential area and fired a weapon into the air, authorities said. At least one police officer returned fire. Authorities said the man was hospitalized. Officials announced in late April that the officer who shot the man in the abdomen will not face charges.

March 1A suspect is dead after an officer-involved shooting in Pueblo. The suspect tried to carjack multiple people with an AR-15 style rifle including an off-duty Pueblo County deputy, according to Pueblo Police. The deputy and another officer who arrived at the scene both fired at the suspect. The suspect died at the scene. No officers were injured.

February

Feb. 27 — An off-duty Colorado Springs Police officer shot and killed a man. Police said a man approached the officer's personal vehicle in a fast-food drive-thru and told him that he had a gun. The off-duty officer fired at least one shot at the man, killing him, investigators said. Police got reports of an armed robbery nearby around the same time, but it's unclear if the two incidents were connected.

Feb. 26 — Greeley police shot and killed a man after officers stopped a car in the 100 block of 14th Avenue that they say was suspicious. When they approached a vehicle with two people inside around 1 a.m., officers saw a gun on the driver's lap, police said. The driver was later identified as 30-year-old Ramiro Carrasco. The officer told Carrasco to keep his hands up until a backup unit arrived, authorities said in a news release. They said Carrasco disregarded the commands and moved a hand toward the gun in his lap. An officer then fired. Authorities said the officers gave Carrasco first aid but he later died at a hospital. Weld County District Attorney Michael Rourke announced in May that the Greeley officer was justified in shooting Carrasco. Officials decided not to name the officer, citing Carrasco's ties to gangs.

Feb. 21 — Arvada Police officers shot and killed a man while responding to a domestic violence call in Arvada. Officers arrived to find a deceased female stabbing victim and an armed male suspect, who was killed by police. No officers were injured. The female victim was later identified as 40-year-old Katrina Perez. The suspect in her death was later identified as 40-year-old Manuel Arebalo.

Feb. 14 — Commerce City police shot and killed a suspect. Around 6 a.m., police responded to several calls about shots being fired near the Rocky Mountain Arsenal. Officials say that after officers tried to stop a suspect vehicle, a short chase ensued and officers ended up shooting and killing a suspect who has not been identified. No officers were injured in the shooting.

Feb. 13 — A Weld County sheriff's deputy shot and injured a suspect near Longmont. Officials said the deputy spotted a car associated with a person wanted on a felony near a hotel around 5 p.m. The deputy and two Firestone police officers contacted the suspect and shots were fired. The suspect, later identified as Sarah Jesser, was taken into custody. No officers were injured. The Weld County District Attorney announced in March that no charges would be filed against the officer who shot her.

Feb. 2 — Grand Junction police officers were involved in a shooting overnight that left a person with serious injuries. The Mesa County Sheriff's Office says the person was transported to the hospital, but they wouldn't say if officers fired their weapons. No police were injured in the shooting, and the suspect's condition is unknown.

January

Jan. 25 — A Denver police officer shot and killed an armed robbery suspect in Aurora. Aurora police say Denver officers pursued the man and two other suspects into their city. They say he carjacked two other vehicles while they pursued him. The circumstances around the shooting are unclear, but the man later died at an area hospital. Two other people in the car, a woman and a juvenile male were arrested at the scene. An investigation is ongoing. Neither the man's name nor that of the involved officer have been released.

Jan. 22 — Arvada police were involved in a shooting that left one suspect dead. It happened near 56th Avenue and Marshall Street in Olde Town. Officers were responding to a domestic violence call after reports of a man hitting a car and other things with a metal pipe outside a woman's home. Authorities say the police shot the man when he pulled out a knife. The woman inside the home was taken to the hospital to be treated for injuries. No police officers were injured.

Jan. 22 — Arapahoe County sheriff's deputies shot a person after stopping a car with suspected car thieves inside. Officers say they stopped the car in Aurora near Parker and Arapahoe roads around 8 p.m. to try to arrest the suspects inside. In the process, one suspect was shot and one deputy was minorly injured. A second suspect in the car was arrested and a third remains at large. The shot suspect was hospitalized.

Jan. 12 — Police officers in Wheat Ridge shot and killed a man suspected of bank robbery after a two-hour standoff at a motel. SWAT officers arrived at a motel early in the morning and tried to talk 52-year-old Thomas Charles Snyder II into surrendering, according to Lakewood Police. Officers entered a room and Snyder ignored multiple commands to drop his handgun, officials said. Police said he was shot by two officers. Snyder was suspected of robbing a bank in Longmont on Jan. 11.

Jan. 11 — Colorado Springs police are looking for a suspect that shot and injured an officer during a traffic stop. The El Paso County Sheriff's Office said in a press release that the male driver shot at two officers, who then returned fire. The suspect, identified as 35-year-old Randy Bishop, was being pulled over for an expired license plate registration, police said. He was wanted by police for stealing and firing a detective's gun at a hospital and then stealing a car in November. One officer was shot and hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries. Police announced Tuesday that Officer Beau Becker was released from the hospital. Bishop drove away and was later involved in a crash, police said. He then fled on foot.

Jan. 11 — I-70 was closed both ways for several hours outside Glenwood Springs because of a shooting involving a law-enforcement officer. The Garfield County Sheriff's office has not released any additional information about the shooting. It is unclear if anyone was injured.

Jan. 8 — Aurora police were involved in a shooting near Buckley Air Force Base. They were responding to a call about suspicious parties in a stolen vehicle, according to the Aurora Police Department. One juvenile suspect was taken into custody and two juvenile suspects remain at large. There were no injuries.

Jan. 6A Denver police officer shot and killed a man on an interstate ramp in Aurora. The man was driving a stolen vehicle when an officer encountered him in Denver and followed him to I-225 and Iliff Avenue in Aurora, according to Denver Division Chief Ron Thomas. After Police made a traffic stop, the man exited his vehicle and threatened officers with a gun, officials said. An officer then shot and killed him. The man's name has not been released.

Jan. 1Police shot and killed a man in Denver's Westwood neighborhood. A Denver Police spokesperson said multiple officers responded to a call that came in at 12:50 a.m. Denver Police identified the man killed on New Year's Day when he allegedly lunged at them with a knife as 20-year-old Gerardo Antonio Conchas-Busto. According to authorities, a roommate told police that Conchas-Busto attacked and threatened him with a butcher knife. Police said one officer fired one round and another fired five at Conchas-Busto during a home sweep. It's unclear how many times the man was hit. The incident was captured on the officers' body cameras and a butcher-style knife with a 10-inch blade was recovered at the scene, police said.

You can find the list of officer-involved shootings in 2019 here.

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