Officials and family attorneys say that prosecutors in Colorado are looking into the fatal police shooting of a 22-year-old man in June, who was armed with a knife and had called 911 for roadside assistance.
On June 10 at 11:21 p.m., the Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Office received a “motorist assist” call, according to a press release from the agency. Upon arrival, the responding deputies discovered a car and driver that appeared to have been involved in an accident.
The driver and only occupant was described as an adult white male who “immediately became argumentative and uncooperative with the Deputies and had armed himself with a knife,” according to a press release from the sheriff’s office.
“More law enforcement personnel arrived and spent over an hour trying to calm things down. Sheriff’s officers were able to smash the vehicle’s windows and retrieve a knife. The criminal picked up a rock and another knife and rearmed himself.”
According to his family, Boulder, Colorado native Christian Glass was “fully contained in his vehicle and presenting no threat” after he had an accident on the side of the road and called for help.
Glass’s parents said in a press conference on Tuesday that their son did not carry weapons and that the knives were rock tools used for carving rocks as art.
Family members have released an audio recording of Glass’s 911 call, in which Glass can be heard telling the dispatcher “A weapon is at my disposal. As soon as a police officer arrives, I’ll be throwing them out the window “and goes on to detail how they also have two knives, a hammer, and a rubber mallet at their disposal.
Family released body camera footage of the incident, in which Glass offers to throw the weapons out of the car but is told by responding police not to.
“To put their minds at ease, he even offered to toss his rock knives and other tools out the window. But he listened to their no and didn’t do it, “Sally Glass, Glass’s mom, made a statement.
CNN has requested more information about the active duty status of the involved officers and deputies from the Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Office. The Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Office has been asked to provide CNN with an unedited copy of the body camera footage.
The sequence of events leading up to the incident
Several times, Glass can be heard on the video being asked to exit the vehicle by responding deputies.
The video shows that when one responding officer asks Glass if he had taken any drugs, Glass responds, “I smoked, I’ve been…” before becoming distracted by an officer placing what family attorneys claimed were tack strips behind his car.
The autopsy report released by the Glass family’s lawyers revealed that their client tested positive for both THC and amphetamine.
The sheriff’s office claims that after deputies broke the car’s windows and removed one of the knives, Glass rearmed himself with a rock and a second knife. Deputy voices can be heard pleading with Glass to put down the knife several times in the video.
The sheriff’s office claims that deputies used bean bags and a taser “with negative results” before Glass “ultimately tried to stab an officer.”
Glass can be seen twisting and then seemingly thrusting a knife toward an officer before police fire multiple gun shots, as shown on body camera footage. In the following footage, Glass can be seen apparently stabbing himself.
Family attorneys have released a body cam video that has been edited to obscure Glass’s body.
“After Christian is taken out of the vehicle, that is the only part of the videos that we have altered. The scene of his body being treated by medical professionals on the ground is blurred out of view. We decided it was inappropriate to show the world Christian’s naked body “said Siddhartha Rathod, an attorney.
The Glass family claims that Glass had a mental breakdown.
The sheriff’s office said in a press release that Glass was pronounced dead at the scene after he was shot that morning of June 11. This was more than an hour after police had initially arrived. Five gunshot wounds to the torso and one to the right arm were fatal, according to the autopsy report on Glass’ body.
In the meantime, Glass’ loved ones and legal representatives have claimed he is experiencing a mental breakdown.
“It would not have been necessary to use physical force, such as drawing weapons, breaking his car window, firing beanbag rounds from close range, tasing him, or shooting him dead. The officers’ behavior was inhumane and unconscionable throughout the entire incident “A statement from Glass’s parents and lawyers.
The deputy who shot and killed Glass has been placed on administrative leave while the Colorado Bureau of Investigation looks into the shooting, the sheriff’s office said. Local news outlets report that the deputy has since returned to duty.
“The cause of this incident has yet to be determined. CBI Investigative Agents have been following up with the 5th Judicial District Attorney’s Office since the initial presentation of the case to ensure that the DA’s Office has all the information it needs to make an informed assessment “CBI told CNN in a statement.
The US Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado, the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, and the FBI’s Denver Division were all mentioned in a press release issued by the 5th Judicial District Attorney’s Office on Tuesday.
5th Judicial District Attorney Heidi McCollum has stated, “We are working diligently to thoroughly review the evidence in this case.” “When a peace officer in Colorado shoots and injures or kills a person, there are specific protocols to investigate and review such matters,” the author writes.
The office must either issue a report or bring the case before a grand jury “to further investigate or decide if indictments should issue,” as McCollum put it.
After “a complete and thorough investigation,” McCollum promised, “I will release my decision on the action this office will take.” Although public opinion may call for this process to move more quickly, doing so would not be just or fair to the victim’s family.