Published: Fri, January 12, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

'Multiple deputies down' in active situation outside of Denver

'Multiple deputies down' in active situation outside of Denver

Deputies were responding to a domestic disturbance call, but when they arrived they discovered that it was only this one man making a ton of noise.

Sheriff Spurlock said this was the first time an officer had been killed during his tenure as sheriff in Douglas County, located about 20 miles south of Denver.

A gunman opened fire, hitting five deputies and two civilians.

The shooting happened at an apartment at Highlands Ranch, south of Denver.

"All of them were shot very, very quickly, and they all went down nearly within seconds of each other", said Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock at a press conference.

Riehl fatally shot officer Zackari Parrish, while wounding the remaining deputies and injuring two civilians. They were identified as Douglas County sheriff's deputies Michael Doyle, 28; Jeff Pelle, 32, and Taylor Davis, 30, and Catle Rock SWAT officer Thomas O'Donnell, 41.

Over 100 rounds were reportedly fired by the assailant, who remains unidentified at this time but was killed by police.

The suspect was shot dead, the sheriff's office confirmed.

The slain officer was 29 years old, married with two children and had been with the agency for about seven months.

Hundreds gathered Monday night for a candlelight vigil for Parrish, attended by his wife and two young daughters.

The Sheriff's Office issued a "code red" alerting civilians in the area to shelter in place, avoid windows and stay away from exterior walls. 4 other deputies were also wounded, but managed to crawl to safety.

"Wyoming statutes are pretty clear: If someone is not making an immediate threat, they can not by held for a mental evaluation".

The gun battle started after officers were called to an apartment building in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, in suburban Denver, because of a complaint around 5:15 a.m., after responding to a similar call at the same location about four hours earlier.

Douglas County deputies go back to Copper Canyon Apartments at 3404 E County Line Rd.on the report of a domestic disturbance.

Deputy Parrish died on scene from multiple gunshot wounds, Spurlock says his injuries were so severe he had no chance of survival.

In mid-November, campus officers called police in Lone Tree, Colorado and warned them about Riehl, suggesting his rants were indicative of someone with a mental illness.

President Donald Trump offered his condolences to the victims of the shooting, which capped a year of deadly attacks in the United States.

9NEWS has learned the suspect responsible for the "ambush-style" attack on officers in Douglas County Sunday morning is Matthew Riehl.

The wounded officers attempted to pull Parrish, who was hit several times, to safety, but were unable to due to their wounds, Spurlock said at the news conference.

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