By Lauren DiSpirito
WELD COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – An investigation is underway in Weld County after an officer-involved shooting along Highway 85 left one man dead.
It began at approximately 1:30 a.m. Thursday when two Evans police officers were looking into a call about a suspicious vehicle at the intersection of 40th Street and Highway 85. Two men were spotted at the scene and they ran from the officers.
Officers were able to catch one of the men and take him into custody. The other man climbed over a fence into the yard of a wireless communications business and officers lost sight of him, so they set up a perimeter.
Officers from several agencies were called to assist in the search, including members of the Greeley Police Department, LaSalle Police Department and Weld County Sheriff’s Office.
Approximately two hours later, around 3:20 a.m., the suspect was observed by an Evans officer climbing over another fence. That’s when police said the suspect produced a handgun and fired at the officer but missed him.
“During the chase one of the suspects turned and fired at the officer,” said Greeley Police spokesperson Joseph Tymkowcyh.
The suspect once again fled but was contacted by more officers and brandished his gun again. Before raising his gun toward officers, investigators say the suspect yelled, “Shoot me, kill me.”
“The second suspect apparently brandished a firearm at the officers, the officers then fired on him,” said Tymkowcyh.
At least two Greeley police officers and one LaSalle police officer fired their weapons at the suspect. The man died from the injuries at a hospital. No officers were injured.
“Anytime we have anything like this that happens we hope that… no one is injured, that is primary,” Tymkowcyh said. “On the other hand there are times we don’t have a choice.”
Thursday’s shooting is the seventh officer involved shooting in the Greeley area since 2014.
Raymond Alfaro says he found a shell casing in his front yard after the shooting. He says the incident makes him concerned for the safety of his grandchildren, who also live near the scene.
“It’s been happening a lot around here, for no reason, to me it seems,” said Alfaro. “It looked like a movie, cop cars everywhere, chasing people back and forth.”
The district attorney’s office assigned a special team of law enforcement from around the area to investigate the shooting.
The section of Highway 85 just south of Greeley between 37th Street and 42nd Street was closed during the investigation.