Killed – John Montoya (Denver, CO)


DENVER (CBS4)– A Denver police officer is recovering from a gunshot wound to the shoulder after being shot during a chase that left one suspect dead and three other suspects injured.

The chase likely started after a man called police after he said he had a gun pulled on him in front of his Thornton home.

“It all started at four o’clock when one of my grandbabies died,” said the man who claimed to be the target of the man who pulled a gun on him.

He was too afraid to show his face on camera or give his name. He said his four-month old step-granddaughter died in his care. The child’s father confronted him about it and had a gun.

“We walked in the street. He squred off of me and said, ‘You know what? I’m just going to smoke you. I’m just going to smoke you.’ He pulled out a gun. He tried to pull the trigger but the clip was still, it was on safety so it didn’t go off,” said the man.

“We had officers involved in a vehicle pursuit in the area. During the course of that pursuit one of the suspects in the suspect vehicle produced a weapon and fired a shot,” said Denver Police Detective John White.

That vehicle eventually crashed near 39th and Osage Street.

The “mini-crime spree” began in the morning, when a man — apparently distraught over the death of his infant daughter and who a relative said was John Montoya — allegedly pulled a gun on a relative at a home in the 2400 block of 101st Way in Thornton.

Montoya and several other people then got into the pickup and headed to Aurora. Police there said one of the occupants fired on a group of kids near Moorehead Park. A witness called 911 to report a reckless red pickup, which police later realized matched the truck’s description.

Police also believe the truck was involved in an incident where shots were fired at a young passer-by in Denver’s Montbello neighborhood before Denver officers spotted it near West 42nd Avenue and Tejon Street.

“They started firing upon our officers almost immediately,” Pazen said. Officers began chasing the vehicle around the neighborhood before it crashed into a tree about 3:30 p.m. at West 39th Avenue and Osage Street. Police have not said at what point the sergeant was shot.


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