Wednesday, August 15News That Matters

PHOTOS: Two adults, two children shot in Westminster

A boy was killed and two adults and another child were shot Thursday afternoon in a parking lot in a busy section of Westminster, at least the third shooting in 24 hours in the metro area.

The suspect was at large for nearly three hours before he was apprehended without incident on Interstate 25 at Exit 184 in Castle Rock.

The shooting happened about 3 p.m. in the Cedar Wood Square parking lot, near the intersection of 80th Avenue and Sheridan Boulevard, forcing police to close 80th as they searched for evidence, said Cheri Spottke, a spokeswoman for the Westminster Police Department.

A man who was shot is expected to survive his wounds, but a woman and a child were in critical condition as of 10 p.m. Thursday with life-threatening wounds. Police did not identify the suspect or victims, but they said there was no relation between the gunman and the victims.

Before the attack in Westminster, law enforcement officials had been dealing with two other shootings, both involving officers.

Earlier Thursday while responding to a suspicious vehicle report, Adams County deputies shot and killed a woman and wounded another woman in a car. It is unclear whether shots were first fired at the deputies or if the woman just had her gun drawn.

Wednesday night, an officer sustained a serious gunshot wound to the leg and a suspect was killed in the Capitol Hill neighborhood. Two bicycle patrol officers were responding to a report of a robbery at a 7-Eleven when the shooting occurred.

Like most major American cities, Denver has suffered through its share of gun violence, including shootings in which multiple people have been killed. Most recently, in November, three people were shot and killed at a Thornton Walmart in a scene that sent shoppers scrambling for cover, with some drawing their own weapons.

On Thursday in Westminster, more than 20 people witnessed the shooting, with patrons of other nearby businesses describing multiple gunshots in an area heavily saturated with bars, retail stores and two dentists’ offices.

“This is all very upsetting,” Spottke said.

Steve Hamilton told The Denver Post he was in a nearby bar when he heard gunshots. He went outside and found a man suffering from gunshot wounds, his clothes saturated in blood.

“He was very coherent,” Hamilton said. “He was very calm.”

Noel Wygant said he heard shots and saw the same victim bleeding and leaning against a building in an alley.

“His whole right side definitely was saturated in blood,” Wygant said.

Multiple people rushed to the man’s aid until emergency responders arrived.

Some people were locked inside nearby businesses for hours as they waited for an all-clear sign from police. Brad Thomas was among many who rushed to the scene to find loved ones. He said his wife was inside a dentist’s office and heard the gunshots.

The suspect was captured after a state wildlife officer noticed the black Toyota Corolla driving south on I-25 near Arapahoe Road, State Trooper Gary Cutler said. The wildlife officer called in the vehicle, and the State Patrol and the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office were able to get in position to stop the car.

“They got the suspect in custody without incident,” Cutler said.

Children’s Dentistry, a business in Cedar Wood Square, posted a message on Facebook on Thursday night thanking the Westminster fire and police departments.

“We want to thank everyone in the community for the outpouring of support we received after the tragic and senseless incident that occurred today. We ask that you keep the victims in your thoughts and prayers,” the message said. ” … All Children’s Dentistry staff are now home and safe.”

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