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Denver police ID suspect, release more information in Friday’s officer-involved shooting

Police: Suspect pointed loaded gun at officer
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Posted at 3:38 PM, May 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-04 17:46:06-04

DENVER — Police in Denver released more information regarding an officer-involved shooting Friday night that left a 21-year-old man dead.

The suspect was also identified during a press conference Monday. William Lamont Debose was shot and killed by a Denver police officer during a foot chase after police said Debose pointed a handgun at the pursuing officer.

The shooting occurred around 11 p.m. after Debose, and a female driver got out of their stopped vehicle in the parking lot of the Rodolfo “Corky” Gonzales Branch Library near West Colfax Avenue and Irving Street.

Earlier in the evening, Denver police spotted the car driving at a high rate of speed on southbound Interstate 25. At the same time, a police helicopter was tracking the vehicle as it exited the interstate and onto West Colfax Avenue, where ground units were able to make a traffic stop.

During the stop, a passenger in the vehicle’s back seat got out with his hands up while the suspect vehicle took off. The car was still being tracked by the helicopter, which later spotted the vehicle parked in the library parking lot, police said during the press briefing.

Officers arrived at the parking lot and found the suspect vehicle where Debose and the female driver remained inside for at least a minute before exiting the car and walking a short distance, according to police.

At that time, officers ordered the two to place their hands up, which both initially did. But Debose later took off on foot while another officer pursued him, later discharging his weapon when Debose pointed a semi-automatic 9mm loaded handgun at the officer giving chase, police said.

The handgun was recovered from the scene, and officers were recording the event from their body-worn cameras, according to police.

The officer who fired his weapon is a corporal with the department’s gang unit and has been with Denver police since 2005. He was placed on a modified duty status as the investigation continues.

Police are still seeking the assistance of the female driver, who police said is not facing charges. The male passenger who got out at the first initial stop is also not facing charges.

The investigation is ongoing.