Police Pursuit Leads to Car Crash, Fatal Shooting, I-70 Closure
KREX News Room
Mesa County, Colo.- We're learning more about the early morning police pursuit that led to a crash and closure of Interstate 70 near the Colorado/Utah border.
According to the Grand Junction Police Department, at around 7:45 a.m. at the West Gate Inn, authorities attempted to stop a man, wanted out of Lakewood. The suspect then sped off and crashed the stolen truck he was driving near mile marker 1 on I-70.
Following the crash, authorities say the man got out of the vehicle and displayed a gun. SWAT teams shot and killed the man.
Several witnesses saw the shootout happen, including Grand Junction resident Ricky Byrd, who said, "Guy shot at the police twice, and then I could see where he raised up out of before he shot the second time, out the back window, because he was shooting out the back window. Then I could see where he went back down, he went back down, he shot again, and that's when they just returned fire on him."
The Grand Junction Police Department, Fruita Police Department, Colorado State Patrol and Mesa County Sheriff's Office including SWAT were on scene.
According to the Lakewood Police Department, the suspect, whose name has not yet been released, is wanted for an attempted sexual assault of a woman. The alleged incident happened in a Target parking lot around 9 p.m. Tuesday night.
Police say the woman claims she was in her truck when the suspect attacked. The victim was able to get away but the suspect allegedly stole her truck and fled the scene.
Lakewood authorities say that same truck was the vehicle believed to be involved in the crash Wednesday.
One Westbound lane is now open for commuters.