DENVER - Police are hailing the work of a Good Samaritan who saw a police officer struggling with a gunman and was able to jump in possibly help save the officer's life by pulling a gun from the suspect's hand.
Denver police said Officer Wesley Kvasnicka was sent to West Third Avenue and North Federal Boulevard on Sunday afternoon to check on a woman who had collapsed, or was unconscious, and was being held up or dragged by two men.
When the officer arrived just after 4 p.m., he saw two men, one who ended up running away, police said.
The officer chased the man and caught him in the middle of traffic on Federal, and was struggling with him.
"I was actually able to catch him here in the center lane and then we ended up rolling into the traffic," Kvasnicka said. "I'm amazed that we didn't get run over."
"A citizen came out and said, 'Hey officer, can I help you?' and I was like, 'Yeah, come help me get this guy under control.'"
The citizen spotted a gun in the suspect's hand and told the officer, police said. While the suspect was pinned to the ground, the Good Samaritan took the gun from the suspect.
According to the arrest affidavit, the suspect had pulled out a semi-automatic pistol and had his finger on the trigger.
"This circumstance is unique because he put his life and his safety in jeopardy to take a gun out of somebody's hand to help the police," said Kvasnicka. "If he wouldn't have intervened and said, 'Hey officer, you know that guy's got a gun?' then I think the circumstances could have changed, but fortunately for me he had the courage."
"This circumstance is unique because he put his life and his safety in jeopardy to take a gun out of somebody's hand to help the police," Kvasnicka said of the Good Samaritan.
The suspect, identified as Ramon Resendiz, was arrested and held on charges of first-degree assault on a police officer, possession of a controlled substance and theft.
Resendiz had what was believed to be meth in his right coat pocket, according to the affidavit. The recovered gun was reported stolen in 1989, according to the affidavit.
On the Denver Police Department's Facebook page, police thanked the Good Samaritan for working with the officer to make the city safer. The Good Samaritan was not identified. Police did not say what happened to the second suspect or if the report on the woman being dragged was true or not.