1981-Current


 

Sheriff Eugene E. Kiefer
Clear Creek County


On the morning of February 10, 1981, Sheriff Eugene Kiefer was at the Arapahoe campground near Mount Evans, assisting with a search for a Wheat Ridge man. Kiefer had just returned to his vehicle when he was stricken with a heart attack. The Alpine Rescue team immediately began CPR, but Kiefer was pronounced dead at 11:03am upon arrival at Lutheran Hospital.


 


Officer Kathleen Garcia
Denver Police Department


On March 28, 1981, Officer Kathleen Garcia had finished some reports from her late shift at District One and then headed home. While sitting in her car in front of her residence, Garcia was shot once in the head by an unknown assailant. She got out of her car, took a few steps and collapsed on the sidewalk.

 

Garcia later died at Denver General Hospital from her wounds. Although an extensive investigation yielded a few suspects, the murder of the 24 year old Garcia remains unsolved.


 


Officer Debra Sue Corr
Aurora Police Department


Officer Debra Sue Corr was patrolling alone on June 27, 1981, when she contacted a motorist for a traffic violation in the 1500 block of Moline Street. The motorist, Joseph M. Ervin, broke free as she attempted to arrest and handcuff him. Ervin then took Corr's weapon and shot her in the head.

 

As this was happening, Aurora Explorer Scout Glen Spies passed by and tried to help. Spies was shot in the back, but survived. Ervin was arrested at his home in Aurora as he tried to saw the handcuffs from his wrist.


 

 

Sergeant Frank McAteer
La Plata County


On July 4, 1981, Sergeant Frank McAteer was in Bayfield, assisting Marshal Les Seeley with a disorderly conduct arrest. The suspect struggled with McAteer and Seeley for five or ten minutes before being subdued.

 

Enroute to the La Plata County jail in Durango, McAteer complained of pains in his chest and legs, but attributed them to the long struggle with the prisoner. During the booking process, Sergeant McAteer collapsed from a massive heart attack and died the next day.


 

Officer Leroy Talbert
Denver Police Department


Officer Leroy Talbert was assigned as a dog handler in the Special Services Unit. Because of the special physical demands of the Unit, all members were required to attend fitness workouts.

 

During one of these workouts at the departmental gym, Talbert suffered a heart attack. He was taken to Porter Hospital, where he died on August 31, 1981.


 

Patrolman Mark L. Dabling
Colorado Springs Police Department


In December 1982, Patrolman Mark Dabling was walking to his patrol car during a traffic stop, when the driver, Vernon Templeman, emerged from his car with a sawed-off .44 Magnum rifle and shot Dabling in the back. Templeman then abandoned his car, stole another car and was captured just south of Colorado Springs a short time later. Patrolman Dabling died in surgery at Penrose Hospital.

 

Templeman, a career criminal, was convicted of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment. He was also convicted of robbery and burglary charges and sentenced to an additional 16 years.

Source: Denver Post.


 

 

Patrolman Frederick C. Rehmer
Fort Morgan Police Department


In December 1982, Patrolman Frederick Rehmer was responding to a report of a fight in progress. Despite the fact that his emergency lights were flashing, Rehmer's vehicle collided with another vehicle as he was trying to pass it. Rehmer's vehicle went out of control and struck a tree. Rehmer was pronounced dead at the scene.

Source: Denver Post; Colorado State Patrol Accident Blotter.


 

 

Corporal Edgar B. Rains Jr.
Northglenn Police Department


On May 30, 1984, the daughter of Edward D. Quintana summoned police to their residence because her father was threatening her mother with a gun. Corporal Edgar Rains and car partner Collis Woods responded. When they reached the Quintana residence, Rains covered the north corner while Woods covered the south corner.

 

Quintana brandished a weapon, and when ordered to drop it, he began to raise it into firing position. Woods fired one round from a 12 gauge shotgun toward Quintana. When Quintana ducked back into the house, the shotgun pellets continued to the north and struck Rains in the face and chest. Backup officers were called and Quintana was arrested, but it wasn't until later that Rains was discovered at the north corner of the house, lying on his stomach.



Special Agent Clifton Browning Jr.
Federal Bureau of Investigation


On December 8, 1984, Special Agent Browning had flown a surveillance mission near Laramie, Wyoming and was returning to Grand Junction, when he experienced mechanical difficulties near Meeker, and crashed in a heavy snow squall at about 5:45pm. Browning had served 21 years with the Bureau prior to his death and had been stationed in Glenwood Springs since 1972.

Source: FBI.


 

 

Officer Thomas J. Dietzman Jr.
Aurora Police Department


On the morning of August 16, 1985, Officer Dietzman was present at the department's firing range to test for selection to the Special Weapons and Tactics Squad (S.W.A.T.) Unit. He had completed the physical agility testing and was the first applicant that day to take the firearms proficiency test. While taking the test, Dietzman was accidentally shot one time in the back of the head with a MAC 10 automatic pistol. Investigation revealed that Dietzman did nothing wrong which contributed to his death. Dietzman had been an officer with the Aurora Police Department for about five years.

Sources: Aurora Police Department; The Denver Post.



Officer Patrick J. Pollock
Denver Police Department


At 4:20 pm on December 12, 1986, the Denver Police Department received a call of a stick-up in progress at The Colfax News, a book store located at 8216 East Colfax Avenue. Officer Pollock and Officer Dan Saracino were a block away eating at Paisan's Pizzeria, so both officers left the restaurant and ran toward the book store. Pollock began to chase the suspect, Jackie Eugene Jones Jr., who ran through a gateway of a nearby home.

 

Saracino, after mistakenly chasing after a person who was not a suspect, headed toward Officer Pollock and the suspect. As the suspect entered the yard of the home, several shots were fired and struck Pollock in the head, neck and chest. Saracino ran into the front yard of the home where Pollock had fallen and fired at the suspect, who was in the middle of the street, and then stopped to aid his partner. The suspect began to slow down and finally fell to the ground across the street from the fallen officer.

 

Pollock and Jones were transported to Denver General Hospital, where Officer Pollock expired at 6:30pm while in surgery. Jones also died from his injuries while in surgery, at 10:00pm.

Source: Code 109.


 

 

Officer James E. Wier
Denver Police Department


On the night of June 3, 1987, Officer Wier and Officer Jimmy Gose were dispatched to 40 South Pennsylvania Street for a "man-with-a-gun call". As the officers arrived at the home, they could see a man, later identified as Charles Tarr, behind the screen door with a rifle or shotgun in his hands. The officers went for cover, Wier crouching behind a three-foot stucco wall and Gose behind a car, just before Tarr opened fire. Officer Wier then rose up from behind the retaining wall to return fire. As he attempted his third shot, Tarr shot him fatally in the head.

 

Gose then called for back-up, which arrived within minutes. Before the mayhem was over, Sergeants Ronald Samson and Peter Diaz were also wounded, Samson seriously. Tarr finally ended his "war" by turning his gun on himself.

Sources: The Denver Post; "In the Line of Duty".


 

 

Deputy Stephen P. Miller
Jefferson County


At about 7:00pm on June 16, 1987, Deputy Miller and Warrant Officer Roger Pettner, who were flying a two-seat patrol helicopter, were dispatched to the Scar Top Mountain area of Coal Creek Canyon to search the rugged terrain for a 15-year-old boy who had threatened suicide and had run from his residence.

 

During the search, the helicopter's engine failed and the aircraft crashed in the Coal Creek Canyon area. Deputy Miller, who was taken to the hospital with two broken legs, a spiral fracture of the back and a crushed shoulder, died the next day, June 17, from cardiac arrest. Officer Pettner, the pilot of the helicopter, survived the crash with only cuts and a fractured foot.

Source: The Denver Post.



Deputy Daniel R. Stillwell
Denver Sheriff's Department


Timothy Vialpando was scheduled to go on trial in a few days for sexual assault against a 13 year old girl. On Saturday evening, September 5, 1987, Vialpando was taken to Denver General Hospital for treatment of a minor stab wound. After treatment, he was shackled to a bed in a room on the 7th floor.

 

Deputy Daniel Stillwell was on duty at the hospital that night, assigned to check on inmates (such as Vialpando) who were not in the locked ward. At about 2:45am on Sunday, September 6th, Stillwell entered Vialpando's room for a routine check of his leg irons. Vialpando attacked the deputy, and after a brief struggle, got Stillwell's .38 caliber revolver and shot him twice in the chest.

 

Vialpando managed to remove his leg irons and fled into the street. He was pursued by hospital security guards to 8th and Cherokee, where he was captured with Stillwell's gun still in his hand.



Agent Edward L. Hockom

Aurora Police Department


On September 18, 1987, Agent Edward Hockom contacted a red Ford pickup which fit the description of a vehicle leaving the scene of an armed robbery at a convenience store ten minutes earlier. The driver, Marvin Walker Jr., shot Agent Hockom in the head and then took off in his pickup.

 

Other Aurora officers pursued the pickup on I-25 and I-70 to I-270, where it stopped after colliding with a police car driven by Patrolman Michael Thrapp. Walker was arrested and charged with murder, as well as for three robberies in the hour prior to the shooting. Agent Hockom died at Denver General Hospital on September 21st.


 

Detective Robert W. Wallis
Denver Police Department


On February 9, 1988, Denver Police officers were pursuing a robbery suspect who was fleeing in a stolen truck. Detective Wallis heard the pursuit coming in his direction, jumped from his unmarked car and was running across the road when he was run down by the suspect in the 4700 block of Tennyson Street. Wallis died at the scene about 1:30pm.

 

The suspect crashed the truck four blocks later, fled on foot for a half-mile, commandeered another truck and forced the man to drive him to a shopping center parking lot. On the way to the shopping center, a Channel 4 TV helicopter, which had been taping the pursuit, landed in the truck's path. Officers surrounded the truck and opened fire while removing the uninjured hostage from the driver's seat. The suspect was killed at the scene.

Source: The Denver Post.


 

 

Sergeant Dale McLaughlin
Adams County


On the night of December 26, 1988, veteran Sergeant McLaughlin and Deputy Duncan MacDonald were attempting to break up a family disturbance. At first, suspect Clifford Wayne Wiley appeared to be calm and composed and the situation appeared to be under control. However, when MacDonald asked Wiley for identification, the 53-year-old man yanked a semi-automatic pistol gun from his waistband and opened fire on the officers. MacDonald was struck in the side through an opening in his bulletproof vest and dropped to the floor. McLaughlin was hit twice in the chest, once in the arm and once in the leg. Despite his injuries, MacDonald was able to shoot Wiley at least once.

 

McLaughlin was taken to Denver General Hospital where he was pronounced dead less than an hour later. Wiley died at the scene.

Source: The Denver Post.


 

Deputy Hugh A. Martin
El Paso County


At about 10:00pm on the night of April 13, 1992, a 12-man SWAT team approached a mobile home on the east side of Colorado Springs for a no-knock raid. Deputy Martin, who was the first officer inside the home, was immediately shot in the chest with an assault rifle by Robert Sickich. Two deputies behind Martin fired six shots at the suspect, who was paralyzed by the bullets that hit him in the head and chest.

 

Martin, who had been a member of the department's SWAT team for just over a year, succumbed to his injuries despite the fact that he was wearing a bullet-proof vest.

 

Sickich was charged and sentenced to life without the possibility of parole for the murder of Deputy Martin. Sickich's wife, Wendy Lu Sickich, who returned home just after the shooting incident, was charged with possession of cocaine and intent to distribute the drug, and was sentenced to 22 years in the women's prison at Canon City.

Source: The Denver Post.


 

Officer Beth Haynes
Boulder Police Department


At 12:18am on April 16, 1994, Officer Beth Haynes was dispatched to a Boulder apartment complex on a report of a suicidal male. The man, Ali Kalamy, was crouched in front of a vehicle in the apartment parking lot. Haynes ordered him away from the vehicle, but this only made Kalamy hostile. He charged over the top of the vehicle, firing at Haynes with a 9mm handgun.

 

Haynes returned fire as she sought cover behind the vehicle. She hit Kalamy three times, but he continued to advance and shoot at the officer. When he reached the rear of the vehicle, Haynes's gun had jammed, and before she could slide under the vehicle, Kalami shot her in the head.

 

Kalamy then fled to a nearby apartment where his ex-girlfriend was hiding, and tried to break in the door. When he was unable to gain entry, Kalamy shot himself in the head.



Sheriff Roger D. Coursey
Hinsdale County


In the early morning of November 18, 1994, a series of burglaries took place in Creede. At 5:50am, Sheriff Roger Coursey and Undersheriff Ray Blaum stopped a suspicious pickup truck and contacted the occupants, Mark Allen Vredenburg and Ruth Slater. As Coursey stood near the driver's door, Vredenburg shot him in the chest, killing him instantly.

 

Blaum fired at the pickup as it sped away on Colorado 149. The pickup was found abandoned a short time later, and a manhunt began for the suspects. Several weeks later, the bodies of Slater and Vredenburg were found on a hill overlooking Lake City, an apparent murder-suicide.


 

Officer Shawn Leinen
Denver Police Department


In the early morning hours of February 25, 1995, police were called to the area of the 300 block of East Cedar Avenue to check out a report of shots fired. Officer Leinen arrived at the scene, and while questioning the woman who made the report, Leinen spotted a young man leaving a nearby car. The youth, 16-year-old Raymond Gone, took off running and Leinen chased him between two houses. Then, Leinen radioed in that he had the suspect in custody and that he needed backup. After a period of silence, Leinen transmitted a final radio call of shots fired. As he reported that, other officers who were arriving on the scene heard shots reverberate through the neighborhood.

 

Officer Leinen was killed by two bullets fired into his head by a .25 automatic Raven. Gone was apprehended about 13 minutes after the shooting and was later taken into custody. Gone was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison for the shooting death of Officer Leinen.

Sources: The Denver Post; Rocky Mountain News.


 

Sergeant Timothy M. Mossbrucker
Jefferson County


On April 28, 1995, Sergeant Mossbrucker responded to the Albertson's supermarket at South Kipling and West Bowles on a report of a shooting rampage. Albert Petrosky had killed his estranged wife and a co-worker, and had injured another person who had just dropped Petrosky's wife off at work. Petrosky was fleeing the store just as Sergeant Mossbrucker arrived in his patrol car. While still sitting in his patrol car, Mossbrucker was shot and killed by Petrosky. Apparently, Mossbrucker never saw Petrosky.

 

Petrosky surrendered to deputies and was charged with second-degree murder for the deaths of his wife and her co-worker, and first-degree murder for the death of Mossbrucker. Petrosky was later convicted and sentenced to life in prison for the three shooting deaths. However, he took his own life before he was ever formally sentenced.

Source: The Denver Post.


 

Corporal Ronald R. Beatty
Larimer County


In the early morning hours of October 10, 1995, Corporal Beatty answered a disturbance call in Loveland, where he eventually served a criminal summons to Andrew Geringer. After he served the summons, an altercation broke out between Beatty and Geringer. Some time prior to or after the altercation, Beatty initiated an "officer needs assistance" call over his police radio. Loveland Police Officer Brent Newbanks overheard the call and responded. By the time he contacted Beatty at the scene, the situation was under control.

 

As Beatty was escorting Geringer to his police car, the officer suddenly collapsed. Emergency medical assistance was immediately summoned and Beatty was transported to McKee Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead of a heart attack.

Sources: Larimer County Sheriff's Office; Daily Reporter-Herald.


 

Deputy Brent A. Holloway
Teller County


Deputy Holloway was found shot to death in his patrol car in the early morning hours of October 16, 1995. Holloway had been guarding a house at 416 Cochetopa, west of Divide, until fire investigators could return to investigate a blaze that had destroyed the luxurious home. While Holloway was sitting in his patrol car, Adam Whitney Cooper, an ex-convict, snuck up behind him and fired a bullet into the unsuspecting deputy's head. It was later discovered that Cooper had set the blaze to lure police to the scene so he could get revenge against the police and the judicial system for his years in prison. Cooper later killed himself to avoid being captured after authorities had identified him.

Sources: The Denver Post; Rocky Mountain News.


 

Officer Trevor R. Staszak
Buena Vista Police Department


On the night of October 26, 1996, Officer Staszak responded to a car/deer accident four miles south of Buena Vista on U.S. 285. As Staszak stepped out of his patrol car, he was struck by a southbound vehicle driven by Marci D. Musgrove. Staszak was thrown about 50 feet upon impact, and was pronounced dead at the scene from severe head injuries. In a bizarre twist of fate, Officer Staszak's wife Kelli was in the passenger seat of Staszak's patrol vehicle as he was struck by Musgrove's vehicle. At that time, the Buena Vista Police Department allowed officers to occasionally take their wives on ride-alongs.

Marci Musgrove later pled guilty to vehicular homicide and driving under the influence.

Sources: Mountain Mail; Chaffee County Times; The Denver Post; Colorado Springs Gazette Telegraph.


 

Officer Ronald L. DeHerrera
Denver Police Department


On March 26, 1997, Training Officer Victor Baca and Officer DeHerrera were responding in their patrol vehicle to a call of suspicious activity in a parking lot. DeHerrera had just graduated from the Denver Police Academy and was on his second day of patrol. They were on Federal Boulevard at 19th Avenue when a car ran a stop sign and struck the passenger side of the patrol vehicle. The car had been stolen and was driven by 17 year old Gil Webb, who was traveling between 65 and 80 miles per hour when he struck the police car. The patrol car hit the curb and then struck a tree. Baca received minor injuries and was released from the hospital later that day. Webb was hospitalized with a broken neck. DeHerrera was rushed to the hospital, and after a six-day battle, succumbed to his injuries on April 1, 1997.

Webb was charged and found guilty of vehicular homicide, aggravated assault and auto theft.

Sources: The Denver Post; Rocky Mountain News.


 

Officer Bruce L. VanderJagt
Denver Police Department


On November 12, 1997, police responded to a burglary at Buffalo Creek, in the foothills southwest of Denver. This led to a pursuit by the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department that ended at a condominium complex on Monaco Street in south Denver. By this time, Denver Police officers had become involved. Suspect Matthaeus Jaehnig ran into an apartment yard, and from that position, he began shooting at officers with a fully automatic weapon. When Officer VanderJagt approached the yard, he was gunned down in a hail of bullets by Jaehnig.

Three hours later, Jaehnig was found dead in the yard. He had committed suicide with VanderJagt's service revolver.

Sources: The Denver Post; Rocky Mountain News.


 

Officer Dale Claxton
Cortez Police Department


Shortly after 9:00am on May 29, 1998, Officer Claxton spotted a water truck that had been stolen the previous day in Ignacio. The truck voluntarily pulled over near the south edge of Cortez and Claxton pulled in behind the truck. Witnesses stated that "men in camouflage" jumped from the truck and fired numerous rounds from automatic weapons into the patrol car, killing Claxton.

 

The three suspects fled from the scene, stealing another truck and subsequently shooting and seriously injuring Deputy Jason Bishop and Sergeant Todd Martin of the Montezuma County Sheriff's Office in separate incidents. A massive manhunt began in the Four Corners region and lasted for several weeks. During that time, one suspect was found dead, having apparently committed suicide to avoid capture after wounding Deputy Kelly Bradford of San Juan County, Utah, on June 4. The other suspects remain at large.


 

Deputy Ronald M. King
Douglas County


On May 21, 1999, Deputy Ron King and his partner Deputy Chris Washburn were driving their motorcycles southbound on U. S. 85, south of Titan Road. A northbound van made a left turn in front of the deputies, colliding with both motorcycles. Deputy King died enroute to the hospital. Deputy Washburn sustained injuries but survived.

 

Anthony Ray Sanchez, the driver of the van, was arrested for drunk driving and driving with a revoked license. On March 7, 2000, Sanchez was convicted of vehicular homicide, vehicular assault, reckless driving and drunk driving.

Source: The Denver Post.


 

Officer Dennis M. Licata
Denver Police Department


Motorcycle Officer Licata died as a result of injuries suffered when his motorcycle collided with a car at about 2:15pm on September 6, 2000. Officer Licata and his partner, Officer Roberson, were responding to a construction accident at 18th Avenue and Washington Street. Just west of Shoshone on 13th Avenue, the railroad crossing signals were flashing as the officers approached. Officer Licata accelerated through the crossing and collided with the passenger side of a Honda that was making a left turn from westbound 13th onto southbound Shoshone.



Officer Ryan Cunningham
Vail Police Department


At about 5:00am on May 6, 2001, Officer Cunningham was on eastbound Interstate 70, at the east end of the bridge over Gore Creek. He was preparing to place flares around the scene of a multi-car crash, when an approaching truck tractor/semi-trailer started to slide on the icy surface while attempting to stop. Officer Cunningham warned others about the oncoming truck, and then jumped over the median barrier to get out of the way. He didn't realize that he was 55 feet above the ground and fell to his death below. Ironically, the truck stopped 100 feet short of Cunningham's position.


 

Sergeant (Interim Chief) Daniel C. Dalley
Fruita Police Department


Chief Dalley was at work on June 1, 2001, when he was advised that one of his children was ill and was being transported to the hospital. He left work on his personal motorcycle (his assigned patrol car had been loaned to another officer) to check on his other children and then return to work.

 

At 11:15am, Chief Dalley was in full uniform, traveling westbound on Highway 6, when he collided with an eastbound vehicle that turned left in front of him at M Road. Dalley died on June 3 from the injuries he received in the crash. The other driver was cited for causing the crash.


 

District Wildlife Manager Philip Keith Mason
Colorado Division of Wildlife


On September 3, 2001, District Wildlife Manager Mason was loading bales of hay on a truck at the Harris Beaver Creek Ranch (a State Wildlife Area). Mason died when a large bale of hay rolled over the top of the tractor he was operating and landed on him, causing massive head injuries.


 

Deputy Jason Scott Schwartz
Fremont County


Deputy Schwartz was shot and killed by one of two prisoners he was transporting to the Sheriff's office on the evening of September 28, 2001. Schwartz had responded to an incident in Penrose involving the killing of a dog. Joel Stovall and his brother Michael had been arrested in the incident and placed in Schwartz's patrol car for transport. Apparently, Michael Stovall was carrying two handguns in the waistband of his pants, and at about 8:45pm, he shot Deputy Schwartz in the head near the intersection of U.S. Highway 50 and State Highway 115.

 

The brothers escaped, gathered some weapons in Florence, then shot and seriously injured Corporal Toby Bethel of the Florence Police Department. They led officers on a chase to the west, shooting at numerous officers and wounding Deputy Wes Orosco, before abandoning their pickup near Swissvale early in the morning of September 29.

 

At about 10:00 that evening, the brothers were discovered hiding in a creek bed near Highway 50 and Chaffee County Road 101. Colorado Parks Rangers Casey Swanson and J. W. Wilder and Division of Wildlife Officer Chris Parmeter arrested the brothers without incident. Their weapons included an AK-47 assault rifle with a 30-round magazine and scope.

 

Both brothers pled guilty to first degree murder, 18 counts of attempted murder and one count of aggravated robbery. In November 2001, they were sentenced to life in prison plus 896 years.



Deputy Travis W. Sass
Larimer County

 

At 12:45pm on June 29, 2004, Deputy Sass and Deputy Ian Stewart were enroute to the firearms range for weapon qualifications. Deputy Stewart was driving the patrol car, and they were northbound on Highway 287, about five miles north of Ted's Place (north of Ft. Collins). Stewart was making a left turn into a private drive when the patrol car was struck broadside by a southbound vehicle. Stewart's view of the southbound lane may have been obscured by a large truck directly in front of the patrol car.

 

Deputy Stewart was injured, as were the occupants of the other vehicle. Deputy Sass was pronounced dead at the Poudre Valley Hospital less than an hour after the crash.


 

Detective Donald Young II
Denver Police Department


On the evening of Sunday, May 8, 2005, Detective Young and his partner, Detective John Bishop, were working security for a private party at the Salon Ocampo banquet hall in Denver. Early in the evening, the officers had turned away four young men who had attempted to enter the invitation-only party. One of the men, Raul Gomez-Garcia, was heard to threaten the officers. According to witnesses, Gomez-Garcia later returned to the banquet hall and shot both officers from behind. Detective Young died from his wounds; Detective Bishop recovered and later returned to his duties.

 

Gomez-Garcia fled to Los Angeles and then to Mexico. After a month-long manhunt, he was captured on June 4 in Culiacan, Mexico. Mexico later agreed to extradite Gomez-Garcia, and he was transported back to Denver on December 22, 2005. He has been charged with second degree murder and attempted first degree murder. His trial has been set for September 2006. This narrative will be updated as events unfold.


 

Ranger Jeffrey A. Christensen
National Park Service


On July 29, 2005, Ranger Christensen began a back country patrol in Rocky Mountain National Park. He left the Chapin Pass trail head at about 11:00am, but failed to arrive at the Lawn Lake trail head later that evening. After an extensive search, Christensen's body was discovered on August 6, below the eastern summit of Mount Chiquita in the Mummy Range. The coroner's report indicated that the time of death was probably between 6:00pm and midnight on July 29. Christensen apparently fell and suffered several injuries, including a fatal skull fracture.

 

After this incident, the National Park Service implemented several changes regarding back country patrols.


 

Detective Jared Scott Jensen
Colorado Springs Police Department (2006)


Detective Jared Jensen was shot and killed while attempting arrest a parolee who was wanted for attempted murder.

 

Detective Jensen radioed dispatch that he had spotted the suspect near the intersection of Costilla Street and Hancock Avenue and that he was going to make contact with the suspect. After approaching the suspect, Detective Jensen was shot once in the face. Detective Jensen fell to the ground, and the suspect stood over him and shot him again in the face.

 

Four minutes later citizens called to report a shooting. Responding officers located Detective Jensen on the sidewalk suffering from two gunshot wounds. He was transported to Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds.

 

The suspect was apprehended by FBI and ATF agents following a massive manhunt and was subsequently convicted of second degree murder.

 

Detective Jensen had served with the Colorado Springs Police Department for 3.5 years. He is survived by his wife, parents, brother, sister, two step-brothers, and two step-sisters. One of his brothers also serves with the Colorado Springs Police Department.


 

Agent Michael Del Thomas
Aurora Police Department (2006)


Agent Michael Thomas was shot and killed by a suspect who opened fire on him while he sat a traffic light at the intersection of Peoria Street and Montview Boulevard.

 

Agent Thomas had just left a training session and was heading to another session when the incident occurred.

 

The shooter was subdued by several passers-by and then taken into custody by an Aurora police officer, and two Federal Bureau of Prisons corrections officers who happened to be in the area. The shooter was wanted in Denver for an unprovoked shooting that had occurred the previous week.

 

Agent Thomas had served with the Aurora Police Department for 24 years. He is survived by his daughter, mother, and brother.


 

Officer Kenneth C. Jordan
Colorado Springs Police Department (2006)


Officer Ken Jordan was shot and killed while backing up an officer during a traffic stop of a suspected drunk driver on Fountain Boulevard at 11:15 pm.

 

When Officer Jordan and the second backup officer approached the vehicle, the assailant opened fire, fatally wounding Officer Jordan. The other officer returned fire, seriously wounding the suspect.

 

Officer Jordan was transported to Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds approximately one hour later.

 

Officer Jordan had served with the Colorado Springs Police Department for 6 years. He is survived by his parents and sister.


 

Officer Douglas Byrne
Aurora Police Department (2007)

 

Officer Doug Byrne was killed in an automobile accident while responding to a medical emergency call at approximately 8:00 pm.

 

A vehicle stopped directly in front of his patrol car at the intersection of Sixth Avenue and Norfolk Street, causing him to take evasive action. Officer Byrne suffered massive injuries when he was ejected from the patrol car as it rolled over.

 

He was transported to Swedish Medical Center where he succumbed to his injuries early the following morning.

 

Officer Byrne was a US Marine Corps veteran of the Gulf War. He had served with the Aurora Police Department for 3 years and had previously served with the Glendale Police Department for 6 years.


 

Trooper Zachariah Templeton
Colorado State Patrol (2007)


Trooper Zachariah Templeton succumbed to injures sustained the previous day when he was struck by a vehicle.

 

Trooper Templeton and another trooper had stopped on the side of I-76 to help a man load two plastic farm chemical tanks back onto a trailer that they had fallen off of. As they were loading the containers, a vehicle heading east left the roadway and struck both troopers.

 

They were both taken to Denver Health Medical Center where Trooper Templeton succumbed to his injuries the following day. The other trooper remained in serious condition.

 

Trooper Templeton had served with the Colorado State Patrol for 4 years, and was assigned to the 1D Troop in Adams County. He is survived by his 3-year-old daughter.


 

Officer Nicholas K. Heine
Pueblo Police Department (June 21, 2008)


Pueblo Police Officer Nicholas K. Heine died in the line of duty on Saturday morning, June 20th. The decorated officer suffered a fatal heart attack--the victim of a congenital heart defect that no one knew he had, as he and other officers were attempting to break up several bar fights in the Historic Union Avenue District.

 

Off duty, Heine could be found instructing rookies in defense tactics or spending time with family, he also coached a youth team with the Runyon Football League. "At 30-years-old, he was a healthy guy, a real go-getter, and a skilled cop who was great at catching crooks," said Patricia Heine. "He was a great husband and father.


 

Sergeant David J. Kinterknecht
Montrose Police Department (July 25, 2009)


On On Saturday, July 25, 2009 at about 8:40p.m., Montrose Officers Larry Witte and Rob Satterly arrived at a reported domestic disturbance in the 16900 block of 64.50 road. Montrose County deputies had arrived about 10 minutes earlier and determined the address was in the city. Officer Witte reported a barricaded subject in his detached garage who would not come out as requested. Officer Witte relayed this information to Sgt. Kinterknecht who was enroute to the call. Sergeant David Kinterknecht, Sgt. Bernie Chism and Officer Rodney Ragsdale arrived at the house shortly after 9p.m.

 

The house belonged to Dennis and Pamela Gurney. Pamela, 50, had called 911 as she escaped from the house with an injury to her arm from the dispute with her husband. Dennis, 52, had retreated to his garage and was reported to be intoxicated and despondent. The officers negotiated with Dennis for about 45 minutes. Officers knew there was a gun safe in the garage and also verified that Dennis did not have the keys to the gun safe as they were in the possession of other family members. A decision was made to enter the garage and Officer Satterly kicked the door open while Officer Witte entered the garage with Officer Ragsdale and Sgt. Kinterknecht just behind him. Gurney opened fire with a semi-automatic shotgun striking Officers Witte, Ragsdale and mortally wounding Sgt. Kinterknecht. Dennis Gurney then retreated to another portion of the garage and took his own life with a handgun. Sgt. Kinterknecht was struck in the chest in an area not protected by his vest. Officers Witte and Ragsdale received serious wounds to their legs from the shooting but were able to return fire at the suspect Gurney without hitting him. All three officers were rushed to Montrose Memorial Hospital where Sgt. David Kinterknecht succumbed to his wounds.

 

Montrose Police Department had numerous contacts with Dennis Gurney relating to domestic violence, restraining order violations and incidents relating to alcohol. The initial investigation revealed that the “Gun Safe” was actually a sheet metal gun locker that Gurney had peeled open, using hand tools, to access the weapons.

 

Sergeant David Kinterknecht, 41, was a 10 year veteran of the Montrose Police Department. He had previously served with the Telluride Marshal's Office, San Miguel County Sheriff's Office and Montrose County Sheriff's Office. Sergeant Kinterknecht was survived by his wife Kathy, two daughters, Andrea and Amanda, his mother Joann Topliss and stepfather Don, sister Denise and three stepsons. Officers Witte, 24, and Ragsdale, 53, although seriously wounded, are recovering from their injuries.


 

Deputy Samuel K. Brownlee
Weld County Sheriff's Office (November 23, 201
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Deputies Sam Brownlee and Terry Reed were dispatched at 10:36AM to Highway 34 and Weld County road 59 east of Kersey for a pursuit that was headed west from Morgan County. The vehicle being pursued was a black 2006 Nissan, reported stolen from Fort Morgan, traveling over 100 MPH. Deputy Brownlee followed in the pursuit until it concluded in Evans about 11AM. The suspect, Ruben Reyes, age 20, finally stopped in the Cave Creek subdivision on Coyote Lane with his left front tire shredded from a stop stick. Reyes refused police commands to exit his vehicle and was pulled from the car by officers and he immediately began punching and fighting. During this altercation, everyone went to the ground where, during the chaos, Reyes somehow gained possession of Deputy Brownlee's gun and shot him three times. One of the bullets entered the vest at a shallow angle, exiting at the top of the vest, striking Deputy Brownlee in the head. Reyes was then shot by an Evans Police officer. Deputy Brownlee was pronounced dead a half hour later. Reyes died just after 4:00 PM Reyes was on probation for felony menacing and had previously been charged with driving under suspension twice.

Deputy Samuel K. Brownlee, 43, had served 5 years with the Weld County Sheriff's Office. He was a field Training Officer, Firearms Instructor and Taser Instructor. He previously served as an officer for the town of Ault. Deputy Brownlee was survived by his wife Heather, two sons, Tanner and Chase; and two step-children, Tyler and Maddie. He was also a member of the Blue Knights.


 

Jay W. Sheridan
Limon Police Department (March 9, 2011)

Shot and killed on March 9, 2011 while attempting to serve a warrant on a convicted sex offender wanted in Tennessee. Limon PD had been notified, by the U.S. Marshal’s Service, based on a tip, that the subject was living in Limon. Officer Sheridan was shot when he (and other officers) attempted to arrest the suspect at a mobile home in Limon. The suspect committed suicide shortly after the shooting. Officer Jay Sheridan, 27, had served 6 years for the Limon PD and was survived by his wife, Heather and his infant daughter, Isabel.



David Roberts
Denver Police Department (May 27, 2011)

Shot on March 29, 1985 while holding three prisoners at an apartment house in south Denver. Officer Roberts was shot in the face suffering severe injuries that left him partially paralyzed on the left side of his body and with a permanent fistula in his sinus cavity. Officer Roberts subsequently died, at the age of 58, as a result of those injuries on May 27, 2011. He joined Denver PD in 1979 and was survived by his sister Donette Homra, and his daughter Jennifer Wedeking.


 

Jeremy Bitner
Englewood Police

Englewood Police Detective Jeremy Bitner, 39, was struck by a hit and run driver, while on a traffic stop, on May 27, 2012. This occurred in the 5200 Block of South Broadway. He died from his injuries the next day. Officer Bitner had been with Englewood PD for over 7 years and was survived by his wife and two children. The hit and run driver was captured a short while later in Littleton and received multiple charges including DUI.


 

Celena Hollis
Denver Police

Denver Police Officer Celena Hollis, 32, was shot and killed on June 24, 2012, while working a Jazz concert at Denver’s City Park. She was responding to a reported gang fight when struck in the head by a bullet. The shooter was captured by other responding officers and charged with First Degree Murder. Officer Hollis served the Detroit Police Department for 4 years before joining the Denver Police Department in 2005. She was survived by her daughter Amyre, her parents and numerous other relatives.


 

Matthew Tyner
Colorado Springs Police

Colorado Springs Police Officer Matthew Tyner, 42, died from injuries he received when he was involved in a collision with another vehicle during a police pursuit. He was on his police motorcycle, pursuing another motorcycle, when a vehicle turned in front of him. The other driver did not see Officer Tyner approaching when he made his turn. The pursued motorcycle was not caught. Officer Tyner had been with CSPD for 13 years and was survived by his mother and step-father and two brothers.


 

Leide William DeFusco
Pueblo County

Pueblo County S.O. Captain Leide William DeFusco, 44, died in an airplane crash on August 31, 2012 while working as an aerial Marijuana Spotter attempting to locate illegal Marijuana grows in the San Isabel National Forest. The plane was piloted by retired Pueblo Police Captain John Barger who also died in the crash. Captain DeFusco had 22 years in law enforcement and had been with the Pueblo County SO for 5 years. He served previously with the Pueblo Police Department and was survived by his wife and 4 children.


 

Jeffery Davies
Lakewood Police

Lakewood Police Agent James Jeffery Davies, 35, died early in the morning of November 9, 2012 when he was mistakenly shot and killed by another agent during a search of a residence at 1940 Eaton St. Lakewood agents had responded to the house on a report of “Shots fired” and had arrested 3 ‘uncooperative’ subjects. Three pit bull dogs were reported in the residence and movement was monitored through windows. Animal catch poles and tactical mirrors were brought to the scene to capture the dogs and complete the search of the house. While clearing the carport and yard an agent spotted a male looking over the fence with a gun in his hand. The agent fired when the male subject did not respond to verbal commands to drop the gun. Agent Davies was in full police uniform but it was obscured by the fence and darkness. Agent James Davies had been with Lakewood PD for over 6 years and was survived by his wife and two children.


 


 

We welcome any additions, updates or corrections to the Memorial Book Online. If you have any reliable information to contribute, please contact: CSP Motor Carrier Safety, 15200 South Golden Road, Golden, CO 80401. (303) 273-1875.

 

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