Aurora Police News
The Aurora Police News Blog was created in 2016 as a new way to share news and information from the Aurora Police Department with the community we serve. It is maintained by the staff of the Public Affairs Unit.

Public Affairs Unit Staff:

Sergeant Faith Goodrich - Commanding Officer
Agent Matthew Longshore - Public Information Officer 

To reach a member of the Public Affairs Unit call 720.432.5095 or email [email protected]. If you are a member of the public and you have a question, general request, comment or concern, please email [email protected].

Colorado Criminal Justice Records (CCJRA) can be obtained by completing an electronic request using our new NextRequest Portal.    

Stay connected and informed by signing up for blog e-mail alerts and by following us on our social media sites: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Nextdoor.

The men and women of the Aurora Police Department are committed to making a Aurora a safer place everyday.

DISCLAIMER: Information is subject to change as case investigations proceed. Individuals arrested on the basis of probable cause have not been charged. All arrestees are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law. 


Recent Posts
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(March 18) The Aurora Police Traffic Section is investigating after two pedestrians struck and killed on East Colfax Avenue.

On Friday, March 18, 2022, at about 7:50 p.m., Aurora Police responded a crash involving multiple pedestrians near the intersection of East Colfax Avenue and North Uvalda Street.

The preliminary investigation has revealed that a man was crossing East Colfax Avenue and was not utilizing a crosswalk. This man was struck by a Mitsubishi sedan traveling westbound on East Colfax Avenue. Immediately after this collision, the driver of the Mitsubishi pulled over to render aid. After that driver exited his vehicle, he was then struck by a separate vehicle, a Mercury Mountaineer, also traveling westbound on East Colfax Avenue. That Mercury then immediately pulled over and remained on scene.

The first pedestrian was pronounced deceased on scene. The second pedestrian, the driver of the Mitsubishi, was transported to the hospital and pronounced deceased a short time later. Investigators do not believe that speed or alcohol were contributing factors for either driver.

The identifications of both men will be released by the Adams County Coroner’s Office once they have been positively identified and their next-of-kin have been notified.

We ask anyone who may have witnessed this crash or has dash-camera footage of the crash, and has not yet spoken to police, to contact the Aurora Police Traffic Section.

Agent Matthew Longshore
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095
Posted by [email protected]  On Mar 18, 2022 at 11:29 PM
  
(March 17) On Friday, August 6, 2021, the Aurora Police Department received a report pertaining to allegations of child exploitation involving Darnell Ward (DOB: 02/21/1978). The investigation confirmed the allegations of the original victim and investigators learned of two other additional victims.

The investigation determined that Ward occasionally was a parent spectator at Overland High School girls’ basketball games and would help record scores for the game. However, he was not an official volunteer. It is believed Ward also has helped with sporting events in the Denver Metro area schools. Based on Ward’s history and past allegations, Investigators believe there are additional victims who have been victimized by Ward and have not yet reported it.

On Wednesday, March 9, 2022, Ward was arrested for charges related to Child Exploitation and Sexual Assault in Phoenix, Arizona. Since his arrest, Ward has been extradited to Colorado. The 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office will be prosecuting this case, and any additional media inquiries should be directed there.

Our Victim Services Unit is working closely with the families to offer support and help them work through this difficult event.

If there are any additional victims who are wishing to report to the police, they are asked to call Police Dispatch at (303) 627-3100 immediately. Anyone with additional information about this incident is encouraged to call the Internet Crimes Against Children at 303.739.6711.

Ward is pictured below: 

Suspect Photo

Officer Francisco Saucedo
Public Information Officer 
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095
Posted by [email protected]  On Mar 17, 2022 at 11:12 AM
  
(March 10, 2022) The Aurora Police Department has made four arrests in connection to a shooting that occurred on Wednesday Night at the Quality Inn.

Shortly after the initial shooting call, Aurora911 received a report of another person shot at North Chambers Road and East Smith Road. Officers from the Aurora Police Gang Intervention Unit contacted three juvenile males and one 18-year-old male. They discovered that the adult male was suffering from a gunshot wound. He was transported to a local hospital for treatment.

Officers were quickly able to determine that all the subjects had been involved in the shooting and took them into custody. The adult male was taken into custody this afternoon after he was released from the hospital. All four of the subjects have been arrested for 1st Degree Murder.  Due to their ages Aurora Police will not be releasing the names or booking photos of the juveniles. The adult who was arrested is Rafael Bergeron Martinez of Westminster. 

Detectives are still looking for witnesses and other people who may have been involved in the altercation that lead up to this shooting.  Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720.913.7867.

“I want to highlight the exceptional teamwork that these arrests represent. Our officers and detectives from patrol, the Gang Unit and the Major Crimes Homicide Unit worked quickly to apprehend these violent criminals.” 
--Vanessa Wilson, Chief of Police

“Last night, our community was, once again, shaken by the news of gun violence involving young people. A 16-year-old is dead, and several others are hurt as a result of this mass shooting. This is yet another horrific case of a teen losing their life because too many young people have easy and unsupervised access to firearms. Parents and trusted adults, please talk with teens about whether they have a gun. Gun owners, sales of guns spiked during COVID and we are seeing many guns being stolen out of vehicles or other unsecure locations that end up in the hands of teenagers. Please secure your guns properly so you can ensure that there is one less gun out on the street.”
--District Attorney Brian Mason, 17th Judicial District (Adams and Broomfield Counties)

Rafael Martinez
Rafael Bergeron Martinez, DOB: 12/08/2003

Lieutenant Chris Amsler
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095


Information previously released on March 10, 2022:

(March 10) The Aurora Police Major Crimes Homicide Unit is investigating after a juvenile was shot and killed. Two other adult females were transported to the hospital, and a fourth victim self-transported to the hospital.

On March 9, 2022, about 07:05 p.m., the Aurora Police Department responded to the Quality Inn, located at 3300 N Ouray Street, on a report of a shooting inside the hotel, near the pool. Upon officers' arrival, they located a 16-year-old male juvenile suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. Tragically, the juvenile was pronounced deceased on the scene.

Shortly after the shooting, officers located a 20-year-old and a 19-year-old adult female suffering from apparent gunshot wounds. Both females were transported to a local hospital in serious condition. The suspects left the scene prior to officers' arrival.

At approximately 07:39 p.m., officers were advised that a fourth victim, of unknown age, had self-transported to the hospital suffering from an apparent gunshot wound and expected to survive.

Detectives from the department's Major Crimes Homicide Unit responded to the scene and were responsible for this investigation. At this early stage in the investigation, the facts and circumstances that led up to this death, to include suspect descriptions, are still being determined.

The Adams County Coroner's Office will release the victim's name after positive identification and notification of next-of-kin.

Anyone who witnessed this shooting or has information about this homicide is asked to call Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720.913.7867. By using Crime Stoppers, tipsters can remain anonymous and are eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.

This is Aurora's seventh homicide of 2022.

Officer Francisco Saucedo
Public Information Officer 
Media Relations Unit 
720.432.5095
Posted by [email protected]  On Mar 10, 2022 at 4:27 PM
  
(March 4) The Aurora Police Department Traffic Investigations Unit is announcing the arrest of Adan Antonio Tobias-Ramirez (DOB: 09/23/1999). Adan was arrested for Colorado Revised Statute 42-4-1601 Left scene after accident involving death. A booking photo is not available at this time.

This case is being prosecuted by the 17th Judicial District Attorney’s Office and any additional media inquires should be directed there.

Officer Francisco Saucedo
Public Information Officer 
Media Relations Unit 
720.432.5095

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Information previously released on September 9, 2021

(September 9) UPDATE: The Aurora Police Department Traffic Section Investigators have ruled out the white SUV/minivan as a suspect vehicle.

During the course of their investigation, officers located the white SUV/minivan in question and determined that the vehicle was not involved in this crash.

The Aurora Police Department Traffic Investigators are still seeking information about the white vehicle with tinted windows involved in this fatal crash. Anyone who may have witnessed this crash, has dash-camera footage, or any additional information, is asked to reach out to Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 303.913.STOP. Your tips can remain anonymous and you may still be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.00.


Agent Matthew Longshore
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095


Information Previously Released on September 8

The Aurora Police Department Traffic Section is investigating a fatal hit and run crash that occurred on East Colfax Avenue and North Akron Street.

(September 8) On September 7, 2021 at 11:56 p.m., Aurora Police officers responded to the area of East Colfax Avenue and North Akron Street on a report of person laying on the ground.

Once on scene, officers discovered a 35-year-old male who was suffering from a significant head injury. The victim was transported to a local hospital in critical condition. Tragically, today the victim died from his injuries. The name of victim will be released by the Adams County Coroner’s Office after he has been positively identified and his next-of-kin have been notified.

The Aurora Police Department Traffic Section investigated the scene and determined the victim was crossing East Colfax Avenue, northbound, at North Akron Street, when a vehicle struck the victim and then fled the scene. Investigators have identified a white SUV/minivan along with a small white sedan, pictured below, with dark tinted windows as possibly being involved. Investigators will continue working to identifying the vehicles and their drivers involved in this crash. No additional information is available at this time.

The Aurora Police Department is asking anyone who may have witnessed this crash or otherwise have any information related to this incident, to contact Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720.913.STOP. Your tips can remain anonymous and you may still be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.00.

Officer Francisco Saucedo
Public Information Officer 
Media Relations Unit 
720.432.5095

Hit and Run Suspect Vehicle Hit and Run Suspect Vehicle
Posted by [email protected]  On Mar 04, 2022 at 10:44 PM
  
(February 20, 2022) The Aurora Police Traffic Section is investigating a one car fatal crash that occurred in the Heather Gardens Neighborhood this morning.

At approximately 6:01a.m. the Aurora911 center received a report of a single car crash in the 2600 Block of South Abilene Street.  Upon arrival first responders located a silver Dodge Ram pickup truck that was on it's side in the middle of the RTD light rail tracks that are just west of the roadway.  A 33-year-old man who was driving the vehicle was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced deceased. 

Traffic Investigators believe the Dodge was traveling northbound on Abilene Street when it traveled off of the left side of the roadway. It traveled up onto the sidewalk and into the parking lot of an office building at that location. It continued to travel westbound through the parking lot, colliding with two fences and then dropping 6 feet down onto the RTD light rail tracks.  The truck came to rest on it's passenger side.  Alcohol is believed to be a contributing factor in this crash.

The name of the driver is not being released at this time and will be released by the Arapahoe County Coroner's Office once the deceased has been positively identified and his next of kin have been notified.

Lieutenant Chris Amsler 
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095
Posted by [email protected]  On Feb 20, 2022 at 9:03 AM
  
(February 17) The Aurora Police Major Crimes Homicide Unit is investigating after a woman dies, male transported to the hospital, following an early morning shooting in Aurora. 

On February 17, 2022, at 6:56 a.m., the Aurora Police Department responded to the Glen at the Park Apartments, 291 South Jasper Circle, on reports of a shooting. At this time, it appears that an argument ensued prior to the shooting. Officers located a 38-year-old woman who had been shot and was pronounced deceased on scene. A 28-year-old man was also found shot with what appeared to be a self-inflicted wound and was transported to the hospital in serious condition, but expected to survive. The man and woman were known to one another and are believed to have been in a relationship. A gun was recovered at the residence. No charges have been filed in this case and the investigation is ongoing.

A teenager was inside of the home at the time of the incident. Support and resources are being provide by members of our Victim Services Unit.

The Arapahoe County Coroner’s Office will release the victim’s name after positive identification and notification of next-of-kin.

If you or someone you know is a victim of or experiencing domestic violence, there are a number of resources readily available. You can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800.799.7233, texting SMART to 88788, or visit ViolenceFreeColorado.org. Additional resources and information is available by visiting: https://www.auroragov.org/residents/public_safety/police/victim_services___rights


Agent Matthew Longshore
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095
Posted by [email protected]  On Feb 17, 2022 at 2:23 PM
  
On February 11, 2022, at approximately 4:38 a.m., the Aurora Police Department responded to a report of an adult male armed with a gun at the La Fontaine Apartments, located at 1325 N Idalia Ct. Multiple callers advised the male was going door to door and displaying a gun. The male was described as a Hispanic male, wearing a black hoodie. 

Upon arrival, officers located the male outside the apartment complex matching the description provided by the callers. Officers gave numerous commands for the male to put his hands up in English and Spanish. The male didn’t comply with the officer’s commands which led to shots being fired by the officers, striking the male. Medical assistance was immediately called for and provided by the officers. Once paramedics arrived, the male was pronounced deceased on the scene. 

The two Aurora Police Officers who fired their weapons were equipped with department-issued body cameras, which will be used in this ongoing investigation. They have both been placed on paid administrative leave per department policy. 

The Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) for the 18th Judicial District responded and will be investigating this officer-involved shooting incident. The CIRT Team conducts independent, multi-agency investigations into officer-involved shootings and in-custody deaths that occur in Arapahoe, Douglas, and Elbert County.

The Arapahoe County Coroner’s Office will release the name of the 31-year-old suspect after positive identification and notification of next of kin.

We are requesting all members of the public who were a witness to the events leading up to and after the officer-involved shooting to please contact Aurora Police. 

Tweet from Chief of Police Wilson regarding this morning’s officer involved shooting.

Officer Francisco Saucedo
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095
Posted by [email protected]  On Feb 11, 2022 at 9:56 AM
  
(February 9) The suspect that was identified in this case was killed this evening after an officer-involved shooting. 

More details about that incident can be found HERE.

Agent Matthew Longshore
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095

Information Previously Release


(February 6) The Aurora Police Major Crimes Homicide Unit is needing the public’s assistance in locating a man wanted for killing a woman, injuring two men, inside of an Aurora Church.

On February 4, 2022, about 08:15 p.m., the Aurora Police Department responded to 538 North Olathe Street, Iglesia Faro De Luz, on reports of a shooting. Since that time, Detectives with Aurora’s Major Crimes Homicide Unit have been interviewing witnesses, examining physical evidence and attempting to positively identify the suspect responsible for this shooting.

After numerous interviews, Aurora Police Detectives have now identified the suspect as:
Jose De Jesus Montoya Villa (01/11/1991)

Jose has an active arrest warrant for 1st Degree Murder. We are asking anyone who has information on the whereabouts of Jose to either contact your local law enforcement agency or Metro Denver Crime Stoppers. By using Crime Stoppers, tipsters can remain anonymous.

There is currently a reward of up to $2,000 for information leading to the arrest of Jose.


Agent Matthew Longshore
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095

Jose De Jesus Montoya Villa

Information Previously Released


(February 4) The Aurora Police Major Crimes Homicide Unit is investigating after a woman killed, two other men shot, inside of a church in Aurora.

On February 4, 2022, about 08:15 p.m., the Aurora Police Department responded to 538 North Olathe Street, Iglesia Faro De Luz, on reports of a shooting. Officers located a 36-year-old woman, a 42-year-old man and a 40-year-old man, all suffering from apparent gunshot wounds. The woman was tragically pronounced deceased on scene. The two men were transported to the hospital, expected to survive. A fourth adult was also transported to the hospital for other medical reasons.

Detectives from the department’s Major Crimes Homicide Unit responded to the scene and will be responsible for this investigation. Early information obtained is that there was an event at the church tonight where approximately 15-20 people were in attendance. Investigators do know that there is a personal connection between the suspect and one of the shooting victims. The facts and circumstances that led up to this shooting are still be determined.

The Arapahoe County Coroner’s Office will release the victim’s name after positive identification and notification of next-of-kin.

Anyone who may have observed anything suspicious, or has information about this case, and have not yet spoken to police, is asked to call Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720.913.7867. By using Crime Stoppers, tipsters can remain anonymous and be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.


Agent Matthew Longshore
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095
Posted by [email protected]  On Feb 09, 2022 at 9:13 PM
  
On February 9, 2022, at approximately 3:45 p.m., the Aurora Police Department responded to reports of a shooting at 820 North Dayton Street. Information obtained was that a suspect pulled out a gun on numerous people and fired shots in the parking lot, striking a 26-year old man. Immediately following that shooting, the suspect forcefully stole a vehicle at gunpoint in that parking lot. The suspect then left the scene and got into a hit and run accident at East 13th Avenue and North Dayton Street at approximately 3:57 p.m.

At approximately 4:10 p.m., the Aurora Police Department began to receive calls about an armed robbery at a liquor store, located at 728 North Peoria Street. As officers arrived, they were given a suspect and vehicle description that identically matched the suspect and the vehicle he stole. 

Just a few minutes later, at approximately 4:30 p.m. the Aurora Police Department responded to another vehicle forcefully taken at gunpoint near Interstate 225 and South Parker Road. The suspect description, including the vehicle that was abandoned, identically matched what was given from the liquor store robbery. By the time officers arrived, the suspect was no longer on scene.
Approximately 4:40 p.m., Two District 3 Patrol Officers, riding in the same vehicle, were in the area of South Parker Road and East Jamison Avenue. Officers spotted the vehicle that was taken by gunpoint a few miles away near Interstate 225 and South Parker Road. After observing the vehicle going eastbound on East Jamison Avenue, The Officers activated their emergency lights and siren,  the vehicle stopped, and shots were fired. The suspect was then transported to the hospital where he died from his injuries. There were no injuries to any of the officers. A gun was recovered from the scene.

The Arapahoe County Coroner's Office will confirm the suspects identity. It is believed that the deceased is Jose De Jesus Montoya-Villa. He is the suspect in the shooting that happened at the Iglesia Faro De Luz Church on Friday night.  Investigators from the Major Crimes Homicide Unit and the Fugitive Apprehension and Surveillance Team have been working tirelessly to apprehend the suspect since Friday night's homicide. 

The Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) for the 18th Judicial District responded and will be investigating this officer involved shooting incident. The CIRT Team conducts independent, multi-agency investigations into officer-involved shootings and in-custody deaths that occur in Arapahoe, Douglas and Elbert County. The Aurora Police Department will investigate the crimes leading up-to the officer-involved shooting. 

The two Aurora Police Officers who fired their weapons were equipped with department issued body cameras which will be used as part of this ongoing investigation. They have both been placed on paid administrative leave. 

We want to thank our partners from the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Parker Police Department, Rocky Mountain Falck and South Metro Fire Rescue for their quick response and assistance during this incident. 

Tweet from Chief Wilson regarding tonight’s incident.

Link to our press briefing. 
Agent Matthew Longshore
Public Information Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095

Posted by [email protected]  On Feb 09, 2022 at 8:47 PM
  
This afternoon, Chief of Police Vanessa Wilson terminated the employment of Officer Douglas Wilkinson.

Following an outside investigation conducted by the City’s Human Resources Department, Chief Wilson sustained Mr. Wilkinson for violation of the City of Aurora's Anti-Harassment Policy and the Aurora Police Department's Directive regarding Discrimination, Harassment and Sexual Harassment . 

The investigation was opened following an email sent by Mr. Wilkinson to approximately 235 members of the department on November 16, 2021.  Five employees came forward making a complaint about the contents of this email. 

Mr. Wilkinson was hired in 2002 and prior to being placed on Administrative Leave he was assigned to District 3 Patrol.   

Disciplinary Order

Lieutenant Chris Amsler-PIO
Commanding Officer
Media Relations Unit
720.432.5095
Posted by [email protected]  On Feb 03, 2022 at 4:14 PM
  
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