DENVER (CBS4) – Police in Denver on Tuesday released a surveillance image that shows a shoplifting suspect who discharged a pepper spray-like substance inside the Denver Art Museum store earlier this month. The crime happened at 10:30 a.m. on Jan. 9 and the main floor of the museum’s Frederic C. Hamilton Building was temporarily evacuated for about an hour as a result. Some people, mainly staff members, were treated by paramedics.
The situation came at a time when hundreds were in line at the museum with time designated tickets for “Claude Monet: The Truth of Nature,” the popular exhibition of works by the French impressionist painter. Some of those ticketholders had to be turned away.
In addition to firing off the substance, police said the suspect assaulted an employee and stole several items in the museum shop before leaving the area on foot.
Anyone who recognizes the man seen in the surveillance image is asked to contact Crime Stoppers by calling 720-913-STOP.
A museum official said the pepper spray-like substance did not get into the ventilation system and there was no damage to any of the artwork.