Clear Creek County Sheriff Rick Albers announces retirement in wake of Christian Glass fallout

Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
Zigy Kaluzny holds a photo of his late friend Christian Glass at a vigil Tuesday evening, Sept. 20, 2022, in Idaho Springs. Glass was in his stranded car, from which he had called 911 for help, when he was fatally shot by a Clear Creek County deputy in June.

Clear Creek County Sheriff Rick Albers announced Wednesday that he will retire at the end of the month. 

The 43-year law enforcement veteran wrote on the Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page that he had “mixed emotions” about the decision, which comes in the wake of the killing of Christian Glass by a deputy last year.

Albers' department made national headlines when a deputy shot and killed Glass in June 2022 while the 22-year-old was having a mental health crisis. Clear Creek County commissioners said they plan to reform the sheriff's office. They also said Albers did not do enough to take responsibility for Glass' death and that he did not provide deputies with the proper training.

Glass, an amateur geologist from Boulder County, was on his way home from Utah when his 2007 Honda Pilot was stuck on a rural road near Silver Plume. He had called 911 for help.

The deputies involved, Andrew Buen and Kyle Gould, were fired and face felony charges. Buen is charged with second-degree murder, official misconduct and reckless endangerment, while Gould was charged with criminally negligent homicide and reckless endangerment

Glass’ two parents, Sally and Simon, had previously called for Albers' resignation and said they believed lack of proper training led to their son’s death. The two reached a $19 million settlement with the county in May — the largest known law enforcement settlement in state history. Along with the money, agencies have pledged a number of police reform and mental health training initiatives. Clear Creek County will also dedicate a public park in Glass’s name.

“To the former and current staff of Clear Creek County, thank you for your tireless dedication to the Clear Creek County Community,” Albers wrote in the Facebook post. “It has been my pleasure to have had the honor to work beside you over the past 43 years.”

Albers will officially retire Aug. 3.