The grand jury indicts the Colorado congressmen in the shooting and shooting of 22-year-old Christian Glass
DENVER (AP) — A grand jury has indicted two Colorado sheriff’s deputies in the death of a 22-year-old man who was shot after calling 911 for roadside assistance while experiencing a mental health crisis, according to the online court, his mother described records.
The charges of former Clear Creek County Sheriff’s Deputies Andrew Buen and Kyle Gould were returned Wednesday, five months after Christian Glass was killed by law enforcement. The case has become a flashpoint amid a national outcry for police reforms that focus on crisis intervention and de-escalation.
The charges against the two MPs include second-degree murder, misconduct and involuntary manslaughter, according to court documents, which gave no further details.
The records did not list a lawyer for either MP. A phone message left on what was believed to be Buen’s number was not immediately answered. No phone list could be found for Gould.
A federal judge issued warrants for Buen and Gould, who face bonds of $50,000 and $2,500, respectively, according to a press release from Heidi McCollum, the fifth circuit prosecutor who installed the grand jury.
Clear Creek County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Nichole Lentz said in a statement that both officers were fired following the charges.
The sheriff’s office’s ongoing internal investigation found “policy and procedural errors,” Lentz said, adding that the office’s initial press release after the shooting “does not reflect the entirety of what happened that horrific night.”
Late on June 10, Glass called the police after his car got stuck on an embankment. Body camera videos show Glass refusing to get out of his car while telling police he’s “terrified” and making heart shapes with his hands at officers.
The officers talked to him to persuade him to get out of the car. After more than an hour of negotiations, police said Glass had not been cooperative and they smashed the passenger window and removed a knife from the vehicle.
Glass offered to throw two knives out the window, but video shows officers forbidding him to do so.
When the window shattered, Glass seemed to panic and reached for a second knife. Police then shot Glass with beanbags and shocked him with stun guns. Footage shows Glass spinning in his seat and poking a knife at an officer approaching the rear driver’s window. Then another officer fired his gun, hitting Glass six times, according to the autopsy report.
During a press conference in September, Glass’ mother Sally Glass said her son was suffering from depression, had been recently diagnosed with ADHD and was having “a mental health episode” and was “petrified” the night he was killed.
Jesse Bedayn is a corps member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to cover undercover topics.