Protesters call for arrest of Aurora police officer who fatally shot Kilyn Lewis

A group of people stand in front of a government building protesting.
Molly Cruse/CPR News

Demonstrators gathered outside of the Aurora Municipal Center Friday night to protest the death of Kilyn Lewis, an unarmed man who was shot and killed by an Aurora police officer last month. About 40 friends and family members of Lewis gathered to remember Lewis and ask for the arrest of the officer who shot him. 

“This is really about the family having the opportunity to celebrate the life of Kilyn Lewis,” said Candice Bailey, an advocate for Lewis’s family. “But also we want to let this community, this city council, and this police department know they are now on watch.”

Bailey and the other protesters said they are demanding justice for Lewis’s death and that the gathering served as a “call to action” for a complete restructuring of the Aurora Police Department and the arrest of officer Michael Dieck, the officer who fatally shot the 37-year-old unarmed Black man.

The protest was organized in the wake of Aurora police releasing body-worn camera footage earlier this week of the fatal shooting. The footage shows Lewis being surrounded by multiple SWAT officers. In a statement, interim Aurora police chief Heather Morris said that the Aurora SWAT team was requested to assist in arresting Lewis in connection to an attempted homicide. The shooting is currently under investigation by the Aurora Police Department’s internal affairs unit.

Several people pose with pictures of a loved one who was shot and killed by police near a government building.
Molly Cruse/CPR News
Kilyn Lewis's family stands outside of the Aurora Municipal Center. They were joined by approximately 40 other demonstrators who were calling for the immediate arrest of Officer Michael Dieck, the Aurora police officer who fatally shot Lewis. (From left to right: Kiawa Lewis, Candice Bailey, LaRonda Jones, Anndrec Lewis, Robert Lewis, and Sherdina Lewis)

Lewis was working on a car stereo system when the officers approached him in an apartment parking lot. Less than 10 seconds passed between the officers confronting Lewis and when the single shot was fired by Dieck.

Dieck is currently on paid administrative leave.

“[Officer Dieck] did my dad wrong,” Kilyn Lewis Jr., Lewis's 16-year-old son, said in front of the crowd. “[My dad] was a good man, a good father. I miss him a lot. But we will have justice for my dad soon.”

LaRonda Jones, Lewis’s mother, and Kiawa Lewis, his brother, were also among the protesters — each of them held up pictures of Lewis in front of the crowd. 

“I always called Kilyn my lovable, huggable teddy bear because that's what he was,” Jones said. She also said she is calling for “accountability” for Dieck’s actions. Jones and her family called for “the immediate arrest of Officer Dieck.”

Correction: This story has been updated to correct the spelling of Kilyn Lewis throughout, and to correct the charge he was facing when he was killed.