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Police Say Man Killed At Zoo Attacked & Bit Officer

DENVER (CBS4) – A man is dead after allegedly fighting with police officers at the Denver Zoo on Monday. Now Denver police are investigating whether the officers responded appropriately.

Officers said the man attacked and even bit an officer and zoo employee, and violently resisted arrest.

Officers said they tased the man using a stun gun that doesn’t cause a shock to the whole body, but rather pain only to the area where it is placed. After the man was tased police said he began having convulsions and stopped breathing. CPR was performed, but the man died.

As police sort through the bizarre chain of events leading up to the man’s death a woman who says she is his girlfriend and saw everything claims he was suffering from heat stroke. She told a local radio station her boyfriend was putting his head in a fountain to cool off when security showed up.

“That’s when he was like, ‘Okay, hit me, hit me, you want to fight?’ And that’s when I screamed to him, ‘Babe, you’ve got to stop if you love me, you have to stop right now,'” said the victim’s girlfriend, whose first name is Elena.

But it would escalate. Denver police say the man attacked and bit a zoo employee and when officers tried to arrest him he turned on them.

“This is a situation where you’ve got an individual who you can’t get to comply,” Sonny Jackson with Denver police said. “You can’t just let him walk off for fear he might injure somebody else. So you have to take whatever actions you can to stop the situation.”

“They were trying to grab him but he was so aggressive. There was like five zoo keeper securities and seven cops on top of him,” Elena said. “I didn’t see from behind but there was tasers going, snapping all around and I was just freaked out. That’s when he was like, ‘Baby, I’m dying, help me.’ And I couldn’t help him.”

Elena admitted he resisted arrest and even tried to grab an officer’s stun gun. But she insisted officers overreacted as well.

“We feel for the family, we’re very conscientious of that,” Jackson said. “We also feel for the officers, they don’t feel good about what happened last night; no one does.”

While Elena said her boyfriend wasn’t on drugs, police said they did find drugs and drug paraphernalia on him.

The family met with the chief of staff for Mayor Michael Hancock on Tuesday wanting more information. But until an autopsy comes back, the cause of death isn’t known.

Three Denver police officers and one zoo employee suffered injuries in the incident that required treatment at a hospital.

  • KKK

    the police did the right thing . this guy was violent all he had to do was stop and explain himself . the problem is socitey belives that people can do as they please . get with it people we have laws in place for a reason

    • SmarterThanLibs

      You are a moron. HE WAS HAVING A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Heat stroke and heat stress can cause a person to be erratic in their behavior. The police SHOULD know this. You are a sheep being led to slaughter. You are too stupid to be allowed to vote.

      • suckaman

        You can get HIV from a bite.

      • Johnathan

        Horsehockey. Even if he was having a ‘medical emergency’,,, the officers don’t know that and they don’t have to put up with him biting and harming people. I only wish YOU were there trying to calm him and got your butt bitten too.

      • CLSmoothie

        So can Drugs

      • It`s all good

        Another good reason to legalize drugs.

      • rob nelson

        Who else do you think is a “moron”, moron?

      • sean patriot


      • Dr.Spock

        There are 49 other states, most were hotter than Colorado yesterday, all have zoo`s. Not one had an incident of a hot attendee attacking & biting zoo employees. You choose to believe his behavior was caused by 83 degree weather & ignore the fact that he had DRUG & DRUG paraphernalia on his person.Cases of DRUG INDUCED erratic behavior far out way that of HEAT STRESS. Therefore LOGIC dictates one must conclude that his CHOICE to use DRUGS and endanger society with his subsequent behavior are the cause of his ultimate demise. One must also consider the fact that most of the information provided for this story was from his girlfriend, which could indicate an altering of the TRUTH. See her comment, “He was not on drugs”. I might be different but when I have drugs in my pocket…I have drugs in my system ! OVERZEALOUS COPS ? Yea the world is full of them, just another consideration one should make when you decide to get high & challenge them. You may be smarter than a lib but that`s nothing to brag about !

      • Who is John Galt

        Medical emergency my arse. People with heat stroke get lethargic [look it up]. They don’t get violent, how gullible are you. Sheesh.

      • Alx1775

        Heat stroke, or heat exhaustion (the precursor) can cause a person to behave erratically. If he’s upset, the loss of inhibition and situational awareness can lead to a violent reaction. I’ve experienced it myself – it is no picnic.

        It appears in our country that we are abandoning the death penalty for murderers convicted in court, but are enforcing it for the occasional unfortunate soul (oft a moron, sometimes drunk, and sometimes sick- as this case appears to be) who takes a swing at a cop.

      • mitch52

        A big Gob of Meth can make a person erratic too…

      • patriotgirl1

        I’m sorry, but you are wrong. He already had bitten someone and his behavior was erratic. When police come upon a scene, they do not know ANYTHING, accept what the dispatcher tells them. HE WOULD NOT COMPLY WITH OFFICERS. It is the officer’s duty to protect LIFE AND PROPERTY. It is their duty to protect everyone at that zoo and still practice officer safety.

      • Arey Eiderschnay

        Smarter, you are absolutely correct. The Sheeple used to understand this. But then again the pigs used to be more concerned for the people they are supposed to be serving than they were for their own lives. Those days are long gone.

      • Susan

        In all likelihood, he was using some type of drug such as meth, cocaine, crack, etc.

      • Truth Holder

        “In all likelihood, he was using some type of drug such as meth, cocaine, crack, etc”

        … or prescription Prozac, or Risperdal.

        Gee, maybe deadly forced should be used against all mentally ill people who’ve ever had any symptoms of a psychotic episode in their life. Maybe you’ve never known anyone who suffers from such a condition through no fault of their own, in which case you’re very lucky, but there are such people out there.

      • DoTheMath

        Your ignorance is profound. Protocol dictates that a person whom is a danger to others or him/herself must be restrained by any means necessary before medical attention can be provided. It took 12 people, I repeat, 12 PEOPLE to restrain him.

        Four people were injured by this man BEFORE the tazing took place. By your logic, unarmed EMT’s should have stabbed him with an IV drip while he was harming them. Go back to elementary and learn basic logic, okay?

        Also, assuming you are smarter than others is no basis for your right to vote…present some actual logic and produce evidence of an education before you call other people “stupid”. Oh and by “evidence”, I mean, “produce a valid argument instead of playground politics, or name calling”. Your “evidence” so far has met no such standard.

      • Jay Peterman

        @SmarterThanLIbs- Hey idiot, heat stroke and heat stress results in dizziness and eventual slip in to an unconscious state. WHAT PLANET ARE YOU ON? THIS IS A REACTION TO PCP/CRACK IF ANYTHING. AND A PIPE WAS FOUND ON THIS GUY. Why do idiots like you walk this Earth. It’s unsettling to know that people like you are wazlking in society without a clue. Science proves me right: heat= sleep, pcp= seeing other people as monsters.

      • vic

        METH HEAD.

      • rhokeral

        I have dealt with many people having heat stroke and I have never seen heat stroke cause someone to be violent.

      • rla bruce

        The cops weren’t trying to kill him, just restrain him. He’d already shown a willingness to attack people; were they just supposed to follow him around while he attacked others?

    • Pete Harms

      Did the right thing??? The man was guilty of having his head in a fountain…. you freaking NUMBSKULL….. The article tells it all… you must submit, or be subject to any means necessary…….

      • mfirebrand1

        I agree. They propbably suffocated him when they all jumped on him. Flash mob mentality is spreading.

      • grg

        He wasn’t asked to submit because he had his head in a water fountain — he was asked to submit because he committed aggravated battery against one of the security guards, which is an detainable offense. If he never assaulted anyone, the police would not have been involved. Police do not respond to calls of “illegal head placement in water fountains.” The article does tell all, however you read it with a preconceived perception of animosity against law enforcement which clouded your mind from seeing the man’s actions in a sensible light.

      • rhokeral

        Please read the article before commenting.

    • Philip Inuhoff

      You idiot! You think you know the whole story? You are drawing conclusions from a highly edited 2nd hand account.

      Do you really believe the security showed up and the first words the guy says is “Ok hit me”?

      Have you ever had heat stroke? Your brain is cooking! Gee, let’s add some electricity….. I pray you are tasered someday for walking on the grass, or dipping your feet in a pond..or dunking your head in a fountain.

      • DeputyMarshal

        It is abundantly clear that YOU certainly have had a stroke. Apparently it was fatal and you’re just too stupid to lay down. The guy bit at least two people and according to the guys OWN GIRLFRIEND, he tried to grab an o fficers gun. Now i understand that being brain dead and all limits your understanding of those of us in the LIVING world, but when you grab at a cops gun, you are commiting an assault with a deadly weapon. I have some experience in these matters and you, being dead and all, know nothing…Ergo, I win and you lose. Now lay down and shut up like a good lil corpse.

    • larry

      You’re right. Any time a person behaves in a way which is unacceptable, at least according to our “finest”, they should be killed. Good call. Nothing to worry about when our “finest” deploy a dozen cruisers to deal with a single unarmed citizen…. citizen? Oh no… that would imply rights of some sort. No, we are “subjects”

    • Bill

      Yes, heat stroke makes you fight like a bear! The people sticking up for this animal are complete idiots making assumptions without knowing the facts.

      I’ve had heat exhaustion several times and that last thing I would be capable of doing was fighting, much alone taking on 10 plus law enforcement officers like the Incredible Hulk. Besides, it would take me an entire day of high intensity physical labor in the heat to get to that point, while the average McDonald eating animal goes bonkers while walking around at a zoo with ample supplies of hydration and air conditioning to their disposal?

      The best solution would be is to round up all of this garbage off the streets, and send them to the neighborhoods where all of you bleeding heart goof balls live and let you police them. Then let us all know how that works out for you morons!

    • Jaye

      Are you serious! The cops murdered a guy for resisting arrest during a medical issue. I am horrified of the treatment our ‘law enforcement” officers during arrests. How many times this week have we watched a video of cops catching a guy and he assumes the position and the cops beat the hell out of him, normally he is out numbered four or six on one. This is disgusting. and they will get away with it.

      • Tim

        The man was reacting violently and actually bit a worker there, they attempted to grab him and calm him down and yet he still attacked them. Besides, tasers aren’t lethal weapons and should not have caused the man to die, it was just an unusual reaction to the shock that caused the man’s death. No to mention the fact that he may have been taking drugs at the time.

    • Jon

      No, the right thing would have been to detain him without electrocuting and killing him.

      • suckaman

        While getting bitten? While getting punched in the head ?

    • average man

      Youre a double moron. I hope you get accosred by PoPo and “talk back” Mention your RIGHTS . . .You wont get “protect and serve”. . You will get HARASS AND TAZE.
      Again, you are a fool.

      • suckaman

        I am not worried about the DPD because I don’t do drugs and I obey the law. If he would have bitten me or my children I would have put my concealed weapon permit to use .

    • James Comer

      @DOTHEMATH02 who was attempting to be intelligent said:
      “It took 12 people, I repeat, 12 PEOPLE to restrain him.”

      NEWSFLASH: you aren’t a human megaphone… drop the ‘i repeat’ gig.

      • James Comer

        capslock is not ‘coolness on cruise control’

  • Me

    Wow, all because they didn’t just let the guy cool his head off in a fountain.

    • Matt

      No, it’s not because they wouldn’t let him cool off in a fountain. It’s because when he was told not to, he started attacking and biting people. Their decision (right or wrong) to not let him wash his head in a place where people put their mouth to drink water is their decision to make and right to make it. His decision to fight and bite like a 3 yr old is his to make. Both decisions had consequences and his were more severe. If he’d have just behaved like an adult, everything would have been fine.

      • SmarterThanLibs

        You are a moron too. Heat stroke and heat stress can cause erratic and uncontrolled behavior. Police SHOULD know this. Police should NOT escalate confrontations. They should have HELPED him rather than kill him. And cleaning the fountain takes 30 seconds with bleach. Idiot. You are too stupid to be allowed to vote too.

      • ab

        The guy was a psycho. Only because we are experiencing the radical pussification of America do we have these utopian-seeking soccer moms making excuses for grown ass men acting like imbeciles. The first step to restoring America is making people responsible for their own actions and stop passing the buck,

      • shinea

        People SPIT in those things, and you are concerned about someone cooling off their heads??

      • Randall

        The proper response would have been call a fire unit and spray him with a fire hose thus cooling him down but with enough force to put him on the sidewalk. Tasers in hot weather on a person with heat stroke will absolutely cause a heart attack

      • Tim

        He’s on amphetamines and that’s why he is hot. Excited delirium caused by meth overdose. It’s not uncommon. The taser has nothing to do with it. His body over-temped because he smoke too much meth. That’s why he was trying to cool off and that’s why he was belligerent. But it’s not the officers’ or taser’s fault.

      • Who is John Galt

        Hey Smarter than Libs, his drug addled girlfriend said it was heat stroke. You believe her

        Hey SmarterthanLibs. his drug addled Girlfriend [medical knowledge probably zero] said it was heat stroke and you believe her?
        It wasn’t even hot out, and people with heat stroke are lethargic, they tend to sit or lay down and die unless they get help, they wouldn’t be capable of this kind of violence. Open your eyes. His violence was due to the drugs in his system which led to his ultimate demise. Plenty of drug addicts kill cops and other innocent people, Better him than some guy taking his family to the zoo.

  • Dave Shaffer

    Yeah, I reckon it should be against the “law” to soak your head when it’s hot.

    • Mike R

      You don’t soak your head in a public water fountain where people drink. This loser should have forked over $1.25 for a large ice water and then headed to the indoor reptile exhibit…but now he’s dead. He got aggressive over security approaching him….and now he’s dead. Nice try Dave…SWING and a MISS. lol@you

      • Arey Eiderschnay

        Being “noncompliant” and “aggressive”, even if they are crimes, do not warrant the death penalty. Pigs have no right to serve as judge, jury and executioner. Even the dumbest sheeple should know this. Mike R, your inability to apply logic and attendant lack of critical thinking skills indicate that you are either enrolled in a public middle school, or a Democrat, or both.

  • Hank Smith

    I would not be surprised if the autopsy shows the guy was smoking wet. I am not a doctor, so I can’t attest to violence being an indicator of heat exhaustion/stroke. The violent reaction would indicate he was under the influence of marijuania laced with PCP/formaldihyde. Weed don’t make people mean unless it has assistance. Meth would also cause someone to be extra hot and then violent. We will see.

    • Shinea

      Either that or he had HEAT STROKE and couldn’t “think” at all.

      • kid cool

        i run around the playground in 95 degrees and no one has gotten heat stroke at my school.

  • Davis

    Tasers are safe.

    • Kusokurae


    • Shinea

      Safer than a club upside the head or a bullet.

  • Erik

    Can we ban the tasers yet or do we need more mild offenders being given the death penalty? I don’t care if it wasn’t intended. This is happening way way too often. It is unacceptable and needs to be stopped.

    The police have already proven they cannot be trusted with guns, now they cannot be trusted with tasers either. I’d be happy if all they had was pepper spray and a billy club.

    • suckaman

      If he bit you and gave you HIV how would you feel?

    • Common_Sense

      Mild offender? Really? Did you even read the article? He wasn’t being arrested for dipping his head in the fountain. He was being arrested because he became violent and non-compliant. He bit multiple people for crying out loud! I’m not sure why this is even being investigated because if you resist the police, there will ALWAYS be consequences. Oh, and Erik, when the thugs show up at your house with automatic weapons looking to rob you, make sure you ask for the cops that only carry pepper spray and billy clubs. See how that works out for you!

      • SmarterThanLibs

        Heat stress and heat stroke causes erratic behavior. The cops SHOULD know this. You are a moron for not knowing it as well. This guy should have been helped rather than killed while having a medical emergency. You are too stupid to be allowed to vote.

    • Steve

      Yes, whether police are not being trained properly in their use – the witness said that many tasers were used on him, not just one, which is probably what killed him, or whether they just plain aren’t sufficiently safe, combined with the view in this generation by police that they are not civil servants, but civil rmasters is causing too many manslaughters by police.

    • Tim

      Erik, he OD’d. His heatstroke was caused by meth raising his core temperature above fatal limits. The Taser has nothing to do with it. If anything, it allowed medical workers to give him treatment. If they hadn’t restrained him, he a) still would have died and b) hurt more people. The humane course of action was to restrain him without injury (what the taser did) and let medical workers try to treat him (which they did). But if the meth already fired his brain and organs, he’s going to die. People overheat and die on meth everyday. The taser just let us treat this person before he died.

    • Arey Eiderschnay

      Erik, you are exactly right. Well said.

    • Dr. Drew

      One thing that has been surely proven…People can not be trusted to use drugs responsibly !

  • joe

    he probably died of a heart attack

  • mike

    It’s a sad day when an ill person is murdered buy the people sent to help. Cops have been dealing with these issued for decades without using lethal force! Something simular happened yesterday in Phoenix but, we have it on tape. Two people shocked (attempted murder) standing still with no weapons in the middle of the street. Remember the cops are not the judge and jury. They do not deal out punishment. At least that’s the way we all have been raised. By the way I am part of the RightWing Consterousy.

  • enough

    Why do we need at least 14 police cars to control a person who has no weapons? If they just wanted to kill the suspect, one single police would be enough

    • rob

      what is a police?

    • Julie Richards

      Because the cops are like sharks they smell blood and they all swam to the action!

  • davo

    If you notice in one of the pictures, there are 15 cop cars. Even if there is only one cop per car, that is a least 15 cops to subdue one person. Sure seems like too many to subdue one unarmed man and lots of area likely remain unpatroled for several hours

    • suckaman

      Unless you are high on meth

    • gus

      Davo, there was a Police tasering and a death. That is why there were so many police cars. Put your bong down sonny.

      • Adam

        Put young dung down there Gussy poo. That poo will killl u

  • Keith

    Drug induced freak out. Cops found the stuff on him despite what his girl said.

  • ClarkT

    That’s a shame. He’d be alive today if they had just opened up a firehose on him instead of the taser.

    • stone

      I vote this as best comment.

    • Who is John Galt

      That depends on what your definition of “a shame” is. A violent drug addict is dead, he won’t be killing any innocent people and we won’t have to pay for him in prison. That is NOT what I’d call a shame.

  • Ajleiafj

    Had to throw in the last part about drugs…

    • dudeman

      wouldn’t be part of the story if he didn’t have drugs on him

      • Kusokurae

        Better plant some drugs on him so they can feel better about murdering him. They do it all the time.

    • Who is John Galt

      You have something against the truth. Must be a leftist.

      • suckaman

        Yea they planted drugs on him in front of all those witnesses? Better yet lets say he didn’t do it , it was the one armed man.

  • gus

    Yes he’d still be alive if he hadn’t taken those DRUGS.

    Why do you think they call it dope.

  • Bob

    ““You can’t just let him walk off for fear he *might* injure somebody else. So you have to take whatever actions ….”

    Yeah, so kill him and skip letting things cool off for a couple of minutes and letting him calm down over a cold drink and ice pack.

  • wilbur

    Why do the have about 20 Freakin Cop cars there for this incident involving 1 man? What a bunch of Tax leaching gung ho steroid pumped wanna be warriors. Is this much tax money (cars, manpower and probably a police chopper) needed for this incident?

    • Steve

      In the future, police academies and police hiring should involve psychological tests to weed out applicants who get their kicks exercising force or authority over others.

      • Romantic Violence

        They do. It’s called the MMPI and is really measures nothing. You are dealing with a particular personality type. Fromm calls it the sado-masichist personality. Persons of this type usually accept orders and authority as long as they can impose their will upon others and moreover SM types suffer from co-morbid disorders such as sociopathology and narcissitic personality disorders. Thus they are mentally phucked up

      • Who is John Galt

        Check out the SEIU thugs / Obama voters MSNBC watchers to see that kind of behavior. They take there orders from the Goons at the top of our Communist government. As Obama said, if they bring a knife we bring a gun. Thugs are running this country with orders from Obama, Holder, and George Soros.

    • Brutus

      Remember that next time some out of control whacko running amock jumps on you and is beating you down and there’s nothing but a 120 lb female security guard there to help you because they didnt’ want any overkill. She’ll sit on the walkie talkie after he flings her off with one arm while you are beaten to the point you lose control of your bowels and then complain there was no help.

      Get a diaper, you’re gonna need it. Have you ever even seen a real man fight before? Much less tried to hold one down while he’s biting, kicking, and punching? The safest way to subdue someone is with large numbers, not one on one death-matches. They’re there for 10 minutes. I think the taxpayers can afford that.

  • Andy VanMiddlesworth

    Pure nonsense the temperature wasn’t even 90 degree on Monday Heatstroke my foot. ,this jerk was freaking out on drugs and the girlfriend is looking for a payday by talking to the media right after her “boyfriends death ..

  • emr

    based on the account in the article, the police didn’t have much choice. Asking someone to not drench their head in a public drinking fountain isn’t unreasonable. The response from the individual definitely was. Whether it was drug induced or a heat stroke is irrlevant after the indiviual becomes violent. The individual needs to be subdued before he injures himself or someone else, and using this type of taser rarely, if ever causes death. While tragic and unfortunate for all parties involved, the police did what would be considered standard operating procedure probably nationwide. To those that disagree, what would you prefer…to allow this erratically behaving man that has already behaved violently run around the park and bite people??? Idiots.

    • Chad

      Couldn’t they have simply tackled the guy and cuffed him ? How many officers were there ? 6 ? 7? 10, maybe ?

  • sean patriot


    GTFO 2012

  • Charles

    “tasers going, snapping all around”…that is all I would need to know as a wrongful death attorney.

    • sean patriot


      • Chicago Nick

        ““tasers going, snapping all around”…that is all I would need to know as a wrongful death attorney.”

        What would you expect from that illegal alien whacked up girlfriend? For her to say “yea he deserved it, I told him to wait for that last crack hit”…? That’s why they or she wouldn’t print her last name.

        She was either a Muslim. a ghetto momma or an illegal and I’m going with illegal Latino for the win Alex

        Whenever the surname is missing that’s the case just like the MSM always leaves out (D) when it’s a democrat busted. Every time they do it nowadays. That’s a sure fire sign every time indicating the above is the case..

    • Steve


    • Who is John Galt

      When someone dies a lot of “cops” show up. Since you have no reason to believe the picture was taken before he died other than your own anti-cop bias the picture was probably taken after he died. The reporters tend to show up around that time with the cameras to spin the news for leftists like you.

  • grg

    5 security guards and 7 police officers and they couldn’t take him down?


  • hard9

    20 cop cars– filled the zoo with union goons for one dead druggie– Send the bill to the girlfriend

  • Chicago Nick

    What can they do?

    Are they supposed to just let him run rampant and perhaps ‘off’ someone or injure someone else? If he was heat stricken as the girlfriend says most humans become passive during heat stroke, not more combative, which further elevates their ‘already high’ body temperature.

    So that leads one to believe he was either whacked on illicit drugs or was having a prescription med reaction. Almost every person that dies from tazing it turns up later they were all jacked on crack cocaine. Just about every time, or crystal methamphetamine.

    30 years ago they just shoot him dead, so at least they tried to subdue him with the lesser weapon. If the cop beats him down with a nightstick then he gets sued of vilified for that. Why ANYONE would wanna be a cop in this PC wussified world is beyond me, I wouldn’t do it.

    The criminals get more sympathy than they do for risking their lives every day with the nuts, illegals and ghettoites we have running wild like animals today.

    • Chad

      Perhaps one of the half dozen or more cops on the scene could have, you know, TACKLED and cuffed the guy ? You know, like they used to miraculously be able to do before they had tasers on their hips ? Tasers kille people ALL THE TIME. Sometimes they incapacitate the suspect, sometimes the KILL them. Why do you think they are banned all over the world ?

  • Brutus

    I work out in the hot sun and humidity every day, all day. Heat exhaustion does not make you violent. It makes you quite the opposite. There is more to this story. Anyone walking around a zoo to the point they get heat stroke has some issues to begin with. But even that I do not think would make one violent. It’s too debilitating for someone to fight much at all, much less hold off seven officers. I suspect meth or something like it. A hot day would not sit well if you’re a tweaker.

    • Steve

      Possibly, but the autopsy results aren’t reported here.

  • Susan

    Once again, the aggressor is the “victim” while the police are the brutal thugs who tried to stop this guy from hurting them. I would get checked for rabies because this animal was trying to and did bite them. Of course, if a lion was loose and got tazed and died, the libs would have the same excuse… “It had heat stroke, you should have let him kill you… animals have rights too! Sob!

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