ICE officer shot man in head after foot chase and confrontation in Denver, police say

An ICE immigration enforcement officer during Operation Cross Check in 2011. (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement)

An immigration enforcement officer shot a man in Denver this morning, according to local police. The man held an “edged weapon,” police said.

At about 8:45 a.m., Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers “attempted to stop” a man driving a vehicle near West Huron Avenue and South Louisiana Street in southern Denver, according to police chief Robert White. The man had two outstanding felony warrants for his arrest, police said.

“The individual exited his vehicle,” White said, and the ICE officers then pursued the man on foot.

At some point, “a shot was fired by one of the ICE officers, striking the individual, grazing him in the head,” White said.

“Apparently, some confrontation occurred,” White said, but did not provide further details. Later, police said in a written statement that the man “stopped suddenly” and confronted the pursuing officers “while holding an edged weapon in his hand.”

An officer fired a gunshot, grazing the man’s forehead. The man is expected to survive; he was arrested and charged with assault on a police officer. Police have not released his name.

Reached for comment, an ICE representative confirmed that an officer had fired a weapon. The officers were “conducting a targeted arrest of an individual with conviction for unlawful sexual contact,” wrote Gregory Palmore. In other words, they were detaining someone who had a criminal record, likely so he could be deported.

The statement from ICE continues: “During the encounter, there was an officer-involved shooting.  The injured suspect was taken into custody and transported to a medical facility.”

The statement made no mention of the confrontation. It said that the ICE Office of Professional Responsibility would investigate the matter.

 

Andrew Kenney

Author: Andrew Kenney

Andrew Kenney writes about public spaces, Denver phenomena and whatever else. He previously worked for six years as a reporter at The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C. His most prized possession is his collection of bizarre voicemail. Leave him one at 303-502-2803, or email akenney@denverite.com.