Westminster, Denver police looking for man who fired shots at them in dark

One officer was grazed by a bullet

WESTMINSTER, Colo. - For the second night in a row, police in the metro area are looking for a man who fired shots at officers after a traffic stop in the middle of the night.

Police in Westminster and Denver believe the cases are related because of the similar descriptions of both incidents. The suspect is described as a Native American man with dark hair pulled into a pony tail in a 2000 model Cadillac who opened fire during traffic stops.

"Our detectives are working together to just make sure and try to determine if this is, in fact, one in the same person," said Westminster Police Investigator Cheri Spottke.

Westminster police said an officer stopped a 2000 model Cadillac around 2:45 a.m. at 72nd Avenue and Sheridan Boulevard on Wednesday.

The officer said as he got out of his car, the driver of the vehicle shot at the officer, then drove off. The officer was grazed on his side but did not require hospitalization.

The car was described as a reddish-dull color or primer color with a temporary tag in the window. The officer said the shooter was clean shaven and had a thin face.

On recordings of the radio traffic from the incident, a dispatcher can be heard asking the officer if he had any other information.

"Negative, I need medical. I got hit on the side," the officer replies.

Spottke said the suspect is considered dangerous and officers are checking to see if any businesses in the area have surveillance video that could help to identify the suspect. So far, they have no video evidence.

"It is alarming that he shows no concern for innocent citizens that may be in or around the area when he shoots at officers," Spottke said.

Just 26 hours before the shots were fired in Westminster, on Tuesday at 12:33 a.m., Denver Police officers conducted a traffic stop on a 2000 Cadillac at West 1st Avenue near Utica Street.

As officers approached the vehicle, they said the driver suddenly started firing at them.

The officers fired back, but the driver was able to speed away, police said.

Officers lost the vehicle about two miles away.

No officers were hurt.

Denver police said the wanted vehicle was described as a primer or hand painted gray 2000 Cadillac Deville with black tinted windows. The car may have a broken passenger side window and South Dakota plates 49CAR9.

Those officers also described the shooter as a Hispanic or Native American man in his mid-20s to mid-30s with long dark hair.

Anyone with information about this investigation is asked to call the Westminster Police Department-303 658 4360 or Crime Stoppers 720 913 STOP (7867).  Tips can also be sent by text to CRIMES (274637).