2021 Colorado Police 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. Police in Denver say a man who fired at least a couple of shots along a busy street during the morning commute is dead after being shot by police.

This list compiles all shootings that involve Colorado police departments that have occurred since Jan. 1, 2021. For the purposes of this list, a shooting is defined as an incident where a police officer and/or suspect discharges a firearm.

There have been at least 46 police shootings so far in 2021. At least 18 people have died in those shootings. Separately, 10 people, including a Boulder police officer, died in a mass shooting in Boulder where police shot and injured the alleged gunman before his arrest.


Updated September 21, 2021 @ 8:06 a.m.

Previous years: 2020 | 2019

September

September 21 A Littleton police officer was shot multiple times by a suspect early Tuesday morning after responding to a call of shots fired. Two suspects fled the scene on foot after officers returned fire. According to Littleton Police Chief Doug Stephens, some of the shots struck the officers' body armor, but one shot may have hit an unprotected area above the vest. The officer is in serious, but stable condition. A shelter-in-place order was issued for nearby residents to help police find the suspects, but they remain at large.

September 3 A woman was killed by deputies with the Arapahoe County Sheriff's Department on Friday. Lisa Garcia of Aurora had an open arrest warrant related to a shooting in July that killed a woman in Denver. Police say Garcia ran when officers identified her at an apartment building, then stopped and pointed a handgun at them. Garcia was shot multiple times and pronounced dead at the scene. An independent investigation is underway.

September 2 The Jefferson County Sherriff's office said one of its deputies shot and killed a man who pointed a gun at him Thursday afternoon. The shooting happened near the I-76 off-ramp at Sheridan Boulevard in Arvada after multiple people called 911 to report a man with a motorcycle waving a gun. Police said the suspect pointed the weapon at a responding deputy, who shot and killed him. No one else was injured during the incident. The motorcycle was reported stolen in February.

September 1 El Paso County Sheriff deputies shot and killed a man in Peyton Wednesday night. According to KKTV, deputies said the man was suicidal and armed with a gun. The suspect allegedly shot at police after members of a mental health unit spent several hours trying to talk him down. Three deputies then returned fire. The suspect was pronounced dead at the scene.

August

August 16 — An officer with the Loveland Police, Eddie Luzon, shot a man in the backyard of his residence on the evening of August 16. The man, Alexander Domina, 19, survived the shooting, was taken to a hospital, and is being treated. He was having a mental health crisis when a family member called 911. The Fort Collins Police Department is investigating the shooting. An attorney for the family, Mari Newman, says Domina's grandmother, Judy Domina, says the victim has a mental disability, and that she had called police seeking help in talking him down from his mental health crisis. The investigating agencies have denied requests to release tape of the 911 call, or footage from police body cameras.

August 11 — An Adams County Sheriff's deputy shot and killed a man on Wednesday. According to the sheriff's office, police were conducting undercover surveillance on a domestic violence and kidnapping suspect at a car dealership. After watching the suspect attempt to steal a car, deputies confronted him. Upon confrontation, the man pulled out a gun and at least one officer shot him. He was pronounced dead on scene.

August 3 Commerce City Police exchanged gunfire with an adult male after investigating a dead body in the 7100 block of Grape Street. Officers located a male they say matched witness descriptions of the suspected shooter near Fairfax Park. While talking with the suspect, another adult male shot at the officers on scene. CCP said a six officers fired back at the man, who was transported to the hospital and underwent surgery for multiple gunshot wounds. He is expected to recover from his injuries. No officers were injured in the shooting.

July

July 31 Deputies with the Arapahoe County Sheriff's office exchanged gunfire with a man who barricaded himself in a garage. Officers were called to a Centennial suburb Saturday night after receiving reports of two men fighting at a family gathering. Arapahoe County officials said officers fatally shot the man, who died on the scene. Deputies involved in the shooting are on administrative leave while the incident is investigated.

July 28 — Deputies with the Larimer County Sheriff's Office said they exchanged gunfire with a suspected drunk driver in Berthoud around 10 p.m. on Wednesday. The suspect was transported to a hospital and is being treated for undisclosed injuries. Deputies did not specify whether they were who shot the suspect. The 8th Judicial District Critical Incident Response Team and the Loveland Police Department are investigating the incident.

July 20 — The Aurora Police Department said officers shot a man who fired at them during a domestic violence incident Tuesday. At 12:30 p.m., Aurora Police Officers responded to a domestic violence incident on South Xanadu Way. The caller told authorities that a male was armed with a gun and a shot had already been fired in the house. According to the police department, the officers encountered an adult male who was armed with a gun when they arrived. A shot was fired by the suspect and two officers returned fire, striking him. Police Chief Vanessa Wilson said the suspect has serious injuries and is expected to survive. All uniformed officers had their department issued body-worn cameras activated at the time of the incident. The two involved officers are 11- and 19-year veterans of the Aurora Police Department and neither officer has been previously involved in an officer-involved shooting.

July 12 — An Aurora police officer shot a car in a 7-11 parking lot in the early hours of Monday while responding to a domestic violence incident. According to an Aurora Police Department release, officers made contact with an woman who had called 911 at the 7-11 near South Memphis Street and East Hampden Avenue at 12:10 a.m. The officers try to arrange a meeting with the suspect in the domestic violence incident. While they were waiting for a suspect to arrive, a Ford Taurus drove toward one of the officers in the parking lot at 12:30 a.m. That officer shot at the car, which sped away. Police don’t know who was in the Taurus, whether that person was injured or if it was the suspect in the domestic violence case. The officer who shot at the car was hired by the Aurora Police Department in February 2020. All officers on the scene were wearing body cameras.

July 7 — The Aurora Police Department's SWAT team shot a man Tuesday at the Wolf's Motor Inn motel along East Colfax Avenue. The department says it responded to a tip that an armed homicide suspect was hiding in a room there. Negotiators spent three hours trying to arrange a surrender and discovered a woman was inside with the suspect. Officers forced their way into the room after hearing a gunshot and fired their weapons multiple times. The man was hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries. An investigation is underway.

June

June 29 — Police shot and killed a man north of Denver on Monday. Commerce City police say they responded to a call about a family disturbance. When they arrived, officers reportedly encountered a man with a knife and fatally shot him. The department has not identified the man or said how many officers fired their weapons. The two officers involved are on paid leave. The 17th Judicial District Critical Incident Team is investigating the shooting. 

June 25 — Grand Junction Police officers shot and killed a man when responding to a call around 10 a.m. about an armed individual threatening people at a medical center. Police say the man, who has not been identified, entered the Advanced Medicine Building at St. Mary’s Health center with a gun and aimed it at people inside. Responding officers shot the man shortly after arriving and he was transported to a hospital, where he died. No bystanders or officers were injured. Mesa County’s Critical Incident Response Team is investigating. 

June 22

  • Officer Gordon Beesley, a 19-year-veteran of the Arvada Police Department, was shot and killed in Olde Town Arvada while responding to a call about a suspicious person around 1:30 p.m. Shortly after arriving, Beesley was shot twice by 59-year-old Ronald Troyke. Police say Troyke’s attack on Beesley was an ambush and that the shooter was motivated by anti-police sentiment. 
  • In this same incident, Arvada police shot and killed Johnny Hurley, who was nearby when the shooting happened and intervened after Beesley had been shot. Hurley confronted Troyke and shot him with a handgun. He then walked over to the shooter and picked up his rifle. Police say that a responding officer, who has not been identified, came upon Hurley and shot and killed him. The shooting is being investigated by the Jefferson County Critical Incident Response Team and the responding officer is on administrative leave.

June 14 — Greeley police shot a 57-year-old man, who was taken to the hospital for treatment. The Greeley Police Department responded to a report of a potential burglary at a trailer park on North 35th Avenue. At the scene, officers encountered the man, who they say was "uncooperative". He barricaded himself in his trailer, at which point officers attempted to make contact with him. It is unclear if he was being detained. About 40 minutes later, the man stepped out of his trailer and pointed a weapon at officers. A police officer fired a single shot, missed, and the man retreated inside. About an hour later, he stepped out again and was shot. Police did not disclose his condition as of Tuesday morning.

June 13 — Denver Police shot and killed a male suspect Sunday after responding to a call that someone was firing into a vehicle on E. Colfax Avenue. Division Chief Ron Thomas said the suspect, Duane Manzanares Jr., 30, did not listen to commands and "threatened" officers with a weapon. Several officers shot at the suspect, who was critically injured and died at the hospital. It is the Denver Police Department's fifth fatal shooting since May. In July, Denver District Attorney Beth McCann concluded her investigation into the shooting and found the officers were legally justified when they shot and killed Manzanares.

June 10 — Grand Junction Police shot a 44-year-old man who had an active warrant out for his arrest. Police said in a statement that they responded around 6 p.m. to reports of a wanted person. The man fled from police after a fight, during which two officers were injured. Police said one officer was taken to a hospital for treatment and was later released; the other was treated by paramedics on the scene. Police then relocated the man at a shopping center, where they shot him. Police did not offer details about what led up to the shooting. The incident is being investigated by the 21st Judicial District Critical Incident Response Team.

June 4 — Multiple Denver police officers shot an unidentified person in North Park Hill. Police say they received multiple calls about a person driving and firing a weapon around the Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center. According to police, officers commanded the individual to put down the weapon upon arrival, but the person didn’t comply. Officers fired their weapons and struck the individual, who was then taken to a hospital, where he died hours later. Police didn’t say how many officers fired. No officers or bystanders were injured. The incident is being investigated by multiple agencies.

June 2 — Police say officers shot and killed a man who was suspected of stealing a car from a driver at gunpoint in suburban Denver on Wednesday. The carjacking was reported at a Target store in Arvada. The man, who appeared to be in his 20s, left and hit a fire hydrant in a neighborhood, severely damaging the vehicle. He allegedly pointed a gun at a person who responded to the crash. When officers arrived, police say a shot was fired from inside the vehicle and officers fired back, killing the suspect. Police say a handgun was found in the vehicle.

May

May 30 — Denver police shot and killed a man officers say threatened them with a rifle. Police responded to a robbery call on Sunday afternoon. The officers stopped the suspect, Shannon Wright, 29, as he was walking on the 1300 block of West Alameda. The officers say they yelled at Wright to drop his weapon, which was slung over his shoulder, and he pointed the muzzle of the gun toward the officers. The two officers fired their guns, hitting Wright. Division Chief Joe Montoya said that the officers then began performing first aid on Wright before an ambulance arrived. He was taken to a hospital where he died. Montoya said the store called the police at 3:05 p.m., officers were dispatched at 3:07 p.m., they radioed that they spotted Wright at 3:08 p.m. and one minute later at 3:09 p.m. the officers fatally shot Wright. In July, Denver District Attorney Beth McCann concluded police officers were legally justified when they shot Wright. No criminal charges will be filed against the officers.

May 25 — A deputy with the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office shot a man at Willow Springs Ponds in Fountain. The suspect sustained life-threatening injuries and has been hospitalized. The shooting occurred after hours of negotiation with the suspect, who was allegedly armed. According to police, a K9 unit and SWAT officers were involved in the standoff.  They say the man fled the initial scene at I-25 and Highway 16, before being pursued to Willow Springs Ponds. No officers were injured.

May 20 — A Lincoln County deputy was ambushed and shot on Highway 40. Deputy Michael Hutton responded to a call that a semi-truck was being robbed outside of Limon. Hutton was shot within seconds but hid himself until help arrived. The shooter also injured the driver of a different truck, who had reported the initial theft. Investigators found a man who had taken his own life less than a hundred yards from the scene and say evidence indicates he was the shooter. The witness suffered minor injuries.

May 19 — Denver police shot a man on Federal Boulevard after responding to reports of a stabbing. DPD says officers found a man who appeared to have hurt himself with a pocket knife. They say he ignored orders to drop it and began to approach them with it drawn. Police used a pepper ball and a taser but say neither had an effect. At that point, one of the officers shot the man, who was taken to a hospital in critical condition. Nobody else was hurt.

May 18 — Englewood police shot a 22-year-old man after finding him in a stolen vehicle. Police say the victim tried to drive away and hit three officers. At least one officer fired at the driver, who later died at a hospital. The three officers were dragged behind the car and are being treated for their injuries. A female passenger was taken into custody but hasn't been identified.

May 10 — Denver police arrested a suspect in the shooting of an officer this weekend. Pedro Gallegos faces charges of attempted murder, illegal possession of a weapon and trespassing. DPD said Sunday that officers responded to a call that someone was on a house porch where they did not belong. The shooter reportedly opened fire on the officers and hit one in the leg. The unnamed officer was taken to a hospital in critical condition but is now stable.

May 3 — Canon City police shot two men over the weekend, killing one and wounding the other. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation says two Canon City police officers fired at a car occupied by the two men outside a Quality Inn motel. A short statement from the agency only said police fired shots, "at some point during the incident." The 28-year-old driver died, but the 20-year-old passenger is expected to recover. The two officers are on administrative leave as CBI investigates the shooting and the reason behind the initial contact between police and the two men.

April

April 20 — Lakewood police shot and killed a man after responding to reports of shots being fired. Authorities were told a young white man shot another man before both fled the scene on foot, the department said in a statement. The victim was later located at a nearby hospital, where he received treatment for a gunshot wound. Police say the suspected shooter threatened them with a handgun when they found him during a search of the area. A Lakewood police sergeant then shot the man as he pointed his weapon at officers. The suspect was pronounced dead at the scene, but police have not publicly identified him. The sergeant has been placed on administrative leave.

April 19 — One man was shot and injured after a police chase in Colorado Springs. Colorado State Patrol attempted to stop a vehicle suspected to have been involved in a robbery in Pueblo. The driver fled and CSP and Fountain Police Department officers pursued the vehicle onto northbound I-25. A CSP officer hit the car with a patrol vehicle to disable it. A Fountain officer fired his weapon at least once, hitting the suspect, who was taken to a hospital for treatment.

April 17 — The Weld County Sheriff's Office said in a statement that an officer shot and killed a 60-year-old unidentified white man when responding to a report of a disturbance just northeast of Fort Lupton. Multiple law enforcement agencies were involved and the sheriff's office did not specify what agency the officer worked for. A woman called 911 at around 8:43 a.m. and said that an armed man was preventing her from leaving her house and threatening to kill her. When law enforcement arrived, they found the armed man outside and ordered him to drop his weapon. After several minutes, an officer shot the man who was declared dead on the scene. The incident is being investigated by the 19th Judicial Critical Incident Response Team.

April 9 — A Delta County Sherriff's Deputy shot and killed a 26 -year-old woman named Paige Schmidt after short chase near Hotchkiss. The sheriff's office has not said what led to the chase or what caused the deputy to open fire. The chase began around 11:30 a.m. about 5 miles west of town. Schmidt was the only person in the vehicle and died on the scene. She was identified by the Delta County coroner's office on April 12. The deputy involved has been placed on paid administrative leave and has still not been identified. The 7th Judicial District Critical Incident Team is investigating.

April 9 — A Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agent shot at a suspect when conducting an operation in Colorado Springs. No injuries were reported. ATF was looking for a wanted suspect when the incident occurred. Colorado Springs Police say the suspect fled the scene, led officers on a high-speed chase and was arrested around 3 p.m. The shooting led to a shelter-in-place order that lasted a couple of hours for a nearby neighborhood. Colorado Springs Police will investigate the shooting.

April 5Colorado Springs Police officers shot and injured two suspects near Delta Drive and Chelton Road while responding to reports of an armed robbery. At 12:20 a.m., CSPD received calls reporting an armed robbery at the 7-Eleven in the 3000 Block of W. Colorado Ave. Multiple suspects were seen leaving the area in a silver Toyota 4-Runner, police said. Officers spotted and attempted to stop the vehicle. A suspect fired at least one shot at officers before a car chase began and suspects shot at officers again. Police stopped the vehicle and at least two CSPD officers each fired at least one shot each at the suspects. Four suspects have been taken into custody. The two injured suspects were taken to the hospital to be treated for non-life-threatening injuries. No officers injured.

April 3 — Authorities say a man has been shot and killed in a confrontation with sheriff's deputies near Interstate 25 south of Denver. The Douglas County Sheriff's office said deputies responded at about 6:15 p.m. Saturday to a report of a man with a gun near an on-ramp for the interstate along Happy Valley Road. The sheriff's office says 23-year-old Samuel Yeager died at the scene but did not specify how. It was unknown if the suspect fired at deputies. No other injuries were reported. An investigation by the Douglas County District Attorney's office found the use of deadly force was justified given the deputy "had objectively reasonable grounds to believe, and did believe, that he or another person was in imminent danger of being killed or of receiving serious bodily injury."

April 3 — Greeley Police officers responded to a home burglary alarm and shot a man who exited the house with a gun. The Weld County Sheriff’s Office says Greeley police responded about 3:30 a.m. Saturday to the alarm on 50th Avenue. When they arrived, the officers heard gunshots coming from inside the house. Minutes later, a man who was holding a gun exited the house. Officers gave commands to the man and then shot him. The man was struck once. Officers provided first aid until paramedics arrived and took the man to a hospital. His injuries were not life-threatening.

April 1 — An investigation is underway after police fatally shot a man during a confrontation in suburban Denver. Lakewood police were called to an apartment early Thursday after someone reported that his neighbor was throwing rocks at his door and then brandished a gun. The suspect barricaded himself in his apartment when police arrived and threatened to kill officers if they tried to enter. Police say the suspect fired at officers with what was believed to be a pistol and brandished what appeared to be a shotgun, prompting a SWAT member to open fire. The man's weapons were later determined to be toy pellet guns.

March

March 26 — A man who died after being shot by sheriff’s deputies responding to a potential domestic assault incident in northern Colorado has been identified as 32-year-old Steven Michael Kielian. The Weld County Coroner’s Office released his name Monday but said a final determination of how he died will be released after an autopsy and laboratory reports. The Weld County Sheriff's Office has said the shooting happened Friday after deputies responded to a home near Galeton and a female victim told officers that she was assaulted by a man still inside. The sheriff's office says Kielian was shot during a chase after firing at the deputies pursuing him.

March 22Ten people died, including a Boulder Police officer, in a mass shooting at the Table Mesa King Soopers in South Boulder. The 21-year-old male suspect from Arvada was shot in the leg by police, sustaining a non-lethal injury. The suspect was captured and faces multiple counts in the shooting. No motive has been established yet.

March 21 — Clear Creek County Sheriff's deputies shot and killed a male suspect while responding to a burglary-in-progress, police said. Deputies arrived at 5:37 a.m. to the 1000 block of Morrison Lane, west of Empire off of U.S. 40, and saw two men with two vehicles that seemed to be stuck on the road, according to authorities. Deputies approached the vehicles and the two male suspects pulled out firearms. Officers shot and killed one man and the other fled into the woods. He was later found and taken into custody. The department has not released the names of the suspects or the officers involved in the shooting. No officers were injured.

March 7 — A Mesa County sheriff's deputy shot and seriously injured a man while responding to a call about a suspicious vehicle reportedly speeding and swerving on the I-70 Business Loop. The call also reported that there were people arguing in the vehicle. A short time later, in the 400 Block of Coronado Court, a witness told police that they observed a male suspect pulling a woman into a residence and that she appeared to be in distress. Officers tried to contact the occupants of the residence and then forced their way into the house. They found an injured woman in the house and a juvenile boy, who was removed from the home, according to the Mesa County Sheriff's Office. The boy had a minor cut on his hand. At least one deputy fired a shot and an adult male suspect was injured and taken to the hospital.

January

Jan. 29 — Pueblo officers responding to a report of a menacing male suspect with a handgun shot and wounded 40-year-old James Justice after he evaded and traded gunfire with police. According to the Pueblo Police, the responding officer initially located the man on the 4300 block of N. Elizabeth Street. When approached he shot at the officer, who returned fire but did not hit the man. The suspect then fled to a nearby mobile home park. During a half-hour-long search of the park, the man continued to evade and trade gunfire with police. Justice was eventually shot in the thigh by an officer, arrested and taken for medical attention with non-life-threatening injuries. No officers were hurt.

Jan. 26 — An Adams County Sheriff deputy shot and killed a woman after a car chase. According to the sheriff's department, deputies located a reported stolen vehicle traveling westbound on I-76 near 88th Ave. leading to a chase. The vehicle evaded officers and was later found near 25th Ave. and Imboden Rd. In the search of the area, two women were located. Deputies were alerted to a gun and one woman was fatally shot. An investigation is underway.

Jan. 19 — A man is dead after a police shooting in Evans. According to the Greeley Police Department, officers saw a man with active felony warrants leave a house and get into a car. Greeley officers attempted to pull him over. The man refused to pull over and lead police on a brief chase, the department said. The man crashed the vehicle and fled the scene to a nearby gas station in Evans where he attempted a carjacking armed with a handgun. Officials said police gave commands to surrender, but the man refused to comply and a shooting occurred. The man was declared dead on the scene. Police said he was also involved in another carjacking earlier in the day. No officers were injured. The man's name has not yet been released.

Jan. 12 — Lakewood police officers shot and killed a man north of West Colfax after he allegedly pointed a handgun at them. The Lakewood Police Department said officers responded to Prestige Imports at West Colfax Ave. and Garrison St. on a report that a man was trespassing. They also received a report of a robbery at a grocery store across the street, though the department said they now believe no robbery occurred. While investigating, they saw the suspect and chased him into a nearby neighborhood. According to police, the man, later identified as 32-year-old Ty Spencer Walvatne-Donahey, pointed a handgun and shot at officers at least twice and several officers returned fire. Walvatne-Donahey died on the scene.

Jan. 1 — Two Pueblo County deputies were shot in a shooting in Pueblo West. Police said deputies responded to a home and someone fired multiple shots from the house. Police were in a standoff for about an hour before the suspect was taken into custody. The two injured deputies were later released from the hospital after being treated for bullet wounds. The suspect, identified as 48-year-old Eddie Lovins, is in county jail facing several felony charges.

Editor's Note: CPR News follows Associated Press guidance established in the fall of 2020 on avoiding the vague term "officer-involved shooting." While this language has been used in the past, it is now our intention to be specific on what is known, what is not known — and why — when these events occur.

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