ARVADA, Colo. (CBS4)– Police are investigating a shooting in Olde Town Arvada that left three people dead, including veteran police officer Gordon Beesley. Another person was also killed after being shot by the gunman. The suspect was also shot and killed.
Officers rushed to the area at 57th and Olde Wadsworth about 1:30 p.m. after receiving 911 calls about an officer being hit by gunfire near the Arvada Library.
The veteran officer, later identified as Gordon Beesley, with the Arvada Police Department was shot and killed. Beesley was with the Arvada Police Department for 19 years. He was a School Resource Officer at Oberon Middle School and was working patrol while school was out for the summer.
Beesley’s background includes working on patrol, and with the traffic unit as a motorcycle officer.
While at Oberon Middle School in 2014, Beesley was able to get a bicycle for a boy with special needs but the student’s mother didn’t want him to ride his bike to school alone. That’s when Beesley decided to ride his bicycle to the boy’s house so they could ride to school together. They also rode home from school that day.
The Arvada Police Department wanted to show people how committed Beesley was to his job and students at Oberon Middle School.
In his bio on the city’s website, his motto was quoted, “Look for the good in every day.”
“We are waiting to release his identity until his family has been notified,” said Arvada Deputy Chief Ed Brady had said earlier on Monday before the department released Beesley’s name.
Arvada police say that another person was shot and killed by the suspect. That person’s identity has not been released.
Police also searched a vehicle in the area for possible explosives. The suspect was shot and killed. Police are not searching for any additional suspects and there is no longer any threat to the public.
Witnesses told CBS4’s Conor McCue that they heard gunshots while on the patio and ran for cover inside a restaurant.
Arvada Police, shooting in Olde Town Arvada. One office down, securing the area of 57 and Olde Wadsworth. PIO on scene update to follow.
— Arvada Police (@ArvadaPolice) June 21, 2021
Police urged the public to stay away from the area during the investigation. Much of Olde Town Arvada remained closed on Monday night due to the intense investigation even though the shelter in place has been lifted.
Arvada police tweeted about 10:30 p.m. Monday that Olde Town Square was clear. People who left their vehicles in the cordoned-off area could pick them up at that time. Police also confirmed that some businesses had windows that were being boarded up.
Olde Town Square is now clear. Citizens and business owners may return to pick up cars etc. There will be a company boarding up some windows in the area.
— Arvada Police (@ArvadaPolice) June 22, 2021
Crowds lined the streets of Arvada with American flags and Thin Blue Line flags during the procession honoring the fallen Arvada police officer on Monday evening.
The Arvada Police Department tweeted a link for people wishing to make donations for the Colorado Fallen Hero Foundation.
For those wishing to make donations, the only official donation site for the fallen officer is: https://t.co/LNdJKfKMb9
— Arvada Police (@ArvadaPolice) June 21, 2021
Gov. Jared Polis released the following statement, “We are closely monitoring the troubling situation in Arvada. My thoughts are with the family and friends of the officer who was tragically killed in the line of duty while swiftly and bravely responding to protect civilians in the area.”
Arvada Mayor Marc Williams expressed his sorrow in this statement, “It’s a horribly sad day or the city of Arvada. We have been a community that has been very safe for many many years. We have only lost two officers on duty in the history of the city and neither were firearm involved. We are shocked and saddened and it reminds us everyday how important our police officers are and that we owe them so much.”
Rep. Ed Perlmutter, representing Colorado’s 7th Congressional District, tweeted this statement, “I’m devastated to learn of the loss of one of Arvada’s police officers. Thank you to the first responders at the scene who are working to keep our community safe.”
The Arvada Chamber of Commerce said that they hid in the basement of their office for about an hour after shots broke out. Their offices are located close to where the shooting happened.
The chamber released this statement, “The Arvada Chamber of Commerce is located less than a block from where the active shooter was. Arvada Chamber President, Kami Welch, and her team at the chamber and the visitors’ center went into the basement of the chamber during the shooting. They were in the basement for over an hour.”
Kami continued with, “Thank you to everyone who has reached out this afternoon. The Arvada Chamber team is safe and awaiting additional information. Our hearts are with the Arvada Police Department and all who were impacted today.”
— City of Arvada (@cityofarvada) June 22, 2021
Arvada City Hall will remain closed for the rest of the day on Monday and the Arvada City Council meeting scheduled for Monday night has been canceled. The city released this statement, “In light of this afternoon’s public safety incident in Olde Town Arvada, City Hall will be closed for the remainder of today, June 21, to ensure City rooms and other resources are available to assist our Police Department and other public safety partners in responding to the event. In addition, tonight’s City Council meeting is cancelled.”
All residents and visitors of Arvada are asked to avoid the Olde Town area ENTIRELY. No access will be granted to the area while emergency crews are working this scene. https://t.co/i6LYZTjjgV
— Jeffcom911co (@jeffcom911co) June 21, 2021
After a short closure during the investigation, the G Line train station in Olde Town Arvada reopened.
Olde Town Arvada Station has been reopened and G Line trains are serving the station as scheduled. https://t.co/XRrhDmFCD1
— RTD (@RideRTD) June 21, 2021
There are several police agencies on scene, including Arvada police, Jefferson County Sheriff’s deputies, Edgewater police and Arvada firefighters.