Sheriff’s deputy won’t face charges in fatal officer-involved shooting
Police investigate the scene of a shooting in Five Points that left one suspect dead and one Denver officer wounded on Jan. 30, 2013.
DENVER — A Denver sheriff’s deputy will not face charges in connection with an officer-involved shooting that left a suspect dead and another sheriff’s deputy wounded.
Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey released a statement explaining his decision Thursday, saying “under applicable Colorado law, no criminal charges are fileable” against Deputy Eric Givens for the shooting death Ronette Morales.
Givens and his partner, fellow sheriff’s deputy Don Travis, were serving a burglary warrant for Morales’ arrest at an apartment located 305 Park Avenue West on Jan. 30, when the shooting occurred.
According to Morrissey’s report, which included statements from both deputies and witnesses in the area, Travis was in the courtyard of the building when he noticed Morales attempting to flee down a back balcony. Morales shot at his head, wounding him in the hand, when he attempted to approach her.
Givens was inside the apartment manager’s office when he noticed the shooting, and he “engaged” Morales after seeing his partner fall to the ground. Noticing that Morales had two small children — later identified as a 1- and 5-year-old — near her feet, Givens said he “aimed high.”
Morales was later found dead. Travis was expected to make a full recovery from his injuries.
According to Morrissey, Givens “acted quickly in an untenable situation — his partner was close in proximity to an armed assailant who had fired a shot which narrowly missed his partner’s head.”
“Deputy Givens’ judgment that it was necessary to fire his pistol to save the life of his partner and his own cannot be questioned. This was an encounter where, had he not taken the action he did, his partner would likely have been shot by Morales at close range.”