DPD returns to scene where officer was shot

Posted at 8:12 PM, Dec 09, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-09 22:12:05-05

The unnamed suspect accused of shooting a Denver police officer has a violent criminal past and according to police, he should not have been in possession of a gun.

“He has been charged in the past with being a felon in possession of a gun, so yes, by law he should not have been in possession of a weapon or ammunition. That will be additional charges that we are looking at,” said Commander Ron Saunier, Major Crimes Division.

Denver Police still won’t say how many shots were fired during the shootout between the officer and suspect.  Department officials said the officer was able to return fire, radio for an ambulance and provide dispatchers with a description of the suspect and another woman in the car.

Related: Person of interest turns herself in after police shooting

Officer Tony Lopez Junior was conducting a traffic stop when the shooting happened. Radio traffic indicates the suspect fired shots almost immediately after being pulled over. Police still don’t know what prompted Officer Lopez to pull over the driver.

Wednesday afternoon investigators were back at a liquor store parking lot near 37th Street and Federal Bouldvard, where the shooting happened. The surveyed the parking lot and a nearby alley to make sure any necessary evidence wasn’t missed during the chaos that played out a day earlier. A police helicopter also circled the area and Denver Fire assisted with providing ladders to look on the roof of the building.

Across the street, at Crossfit Cuspis, business is getting back to normal. Two people were inside the gym yesterday and witnessed the shooting. A bullet hit the front of the building, not too far from a window.

“About that time I saw the officer down on the ground he was laying flat on the ground, still had his firearm drawn and it looked like he was still shooting but I assumed at that point he was probably hit,” said Todd Trangmar, one of the gym owners.

Police are asking for the public’s assistance to provide any cell phone videos or photos that could help with the case. They are also encouraging any witnesses who haven’t come forward yet to speak with investigators.