Monday, September 30, 2019

Police shooting on May 18 ruled justified by District Attorney's Office

Posted By on Mon, Sep 30, 2019 at 1:53 PM

  • Courtesy El Paso County Sheriff's Office
Colorado Springs Police Officer Christopher Laabs won't be prosecuted for shooting and killing Sean Michael Collins on May 18, 2019, the 4th Judicial District DA's Office ruled on Sept. 30.

The ruling comes amid demands by the family of De'Von Bailey, a 19-year-old black man who was shot and killed by CSPD officers on Aug. 3, for an outside investigation of that case.

It's the seventh officer-involved shooting so far this year, the most recent of which took place on Sept. 29 in Monument with the death of David Page. It appears the CSPD will investigate that case, because El Paso County deputies were involved.

Of the seven shootings in 2019, four have been ruled justified by the DA's Office, meaning the DA decided not to file charges against the officers. Three others are pending. Those involved Page, Bailey and Joshua Vigil, shot on July 23.

This week's Independent takes an in-depth look at police-involved shootings.

Collins, who was white, was killed after a woman told officers Collins had threatened to kill her, hit her on the head with a shotgun and attempted to take her infant daughter away from her. The incident began at about 5:27 p.m. in the 4200 block of Forrest Hill Road in Colorado Springs and ended with Collins' death at approximately 9:08 p.m., the DA's report says.

Collins fired on officers using a shotgun and a handgun, and one officer was wounded by shrapnel. After officers deployed "chemical munitions" into the apartment, Collins "came out shooting," the report says.

From the report:
Although very little can be seen on the body-worn camera footage due to the poor lighting, the lighter sounds of Collin’s handgun can clearly be heard before the deeper sounds of Officer Laabs’ weapon. Collins fired three to four shots and as soon as Officer Laabs saw him emerge from the apartment firing his weapon, he returned fire with his weapon. Officer Laabs fired six times, hitting the suspect six times. 
Laabs is a member of the CSPD's Tactical Enforcement Unit.

Officers later found several weapons and ammunition, as well as body armor, inside the apartment.

Read the Sean Collins report here:

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