DENVER (CBS4) – The sister of a Southwest Denver woman who is recovering at the hospital after allegedly being shot by her husband told CBS4 the woman who was shot to death was her sister’s neighbor, who was trying to help her.
The incident started at 10:40 a.m. in the Harvey Park neighborhood in the 2200 block of South Irving on Friday. Police say an alleged gunman, identified as Daniel Abeyta, 31, shot and killed a woman. Abeyta’s wife’s sister, who didn’t want to be identified, told CBS4 the woman’s name was Sandra Roskilly.
When officers arrived the gunman suddenly shot at a propane tank that had gunpowder on top. Denver police’s bomb squad searched homes in the area for devices after the violent shooting situation that involved officers and gunpowder-laced propane tanks.
“Officers responded to the scene and approached what they thought was a possible suspect. As they were approaching the suspect fired one shot at what looked like a makeshift incendiary device which was activated,” Denver Police Chief Robert White said. “Shortly after that one of the officers fired a shot at the suspect, hitting him in the in chest area.”
Other reports said the suspect was shot in the shoulder.
No one was hurt when the propane tank exploded.
Abeyta was critically injured and underwent surgery at the hospital. Abeyta’s brother later appeared at the scene.
“My brother got shot, that’s all I know,” Abeyta’s brother, Mark Abeyta, told CBS4. “I don’t know, I don’t know.”
Police then found the woman dead in a nearby home.
Officers also said Abeyta allegedly shot another woman, who is reportedly his wife, in a different home and that she was injured in the leg.
Abeyta’s wife’s sister said her sister is devastated by Roskilly’s death.
Police are still searching for a motive in the shootings.
Neighbors said Abeyta is a military veteran and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and is involved in a difficult marriage. He has an arrest record that includes felony menacing with a deadly weapon and violating a restraining order.