Police officer kills suspect in rec center parking lot shooting

THORNTON, CO – A Thornton police officer fatally shot a man following an altercation in a local recreation center parking lot. According to the Thornton Police Department, the man opened fire before being shot by the responding officer.

The incident was initially reported via a tweet from the Thornton Police Department, mentioning a considerable police presence around the Margaret Carpenter Recreation Center, located on the 11100 block of Colorado Boulevard. The tweet confirmed an officer-involved shooting situation was under investigation.

The unfolding event dates back to around 7:55 a.m. when an officer observed a car being driven erratically near the intersection of East 112th Avenue and Colorado Boulevard. Upon attempting to engage with the driver, the individual fled the scene on foot, ultimately firing gunshots at the officer within a recreation center parking lot. The officer responded by firing his own weapon and hitting the suspect.

The injured suspect was transported to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Meanwhile, the officer involved in the shooting remained uninjured, according to the police department’s statement.

The incident saw a sizable number of police officers at the recreation center parking lot. A vehicle was spotted at the scene with shattered front windows. The ownership of the vehicle in relation to the incident is currently unclear.

Local witnesses were not evacuated and were not given any instructions to stay indoors while the ongoing investigation occurred.

While the decedent’s identity remains to be disclosed by the Adams County Coroner’s Office, the investigation will be taken over by the 17th Judicial District’s Critical Incident Response Team. Following department protocol, the officer involved in the shooting will be placed on administrative leave.