Police said Johnny Hurley, 40, clashed with the gunman, identified as Ronald Troyke, after Troyke shot dead Arvada policeman Gordon Beesley near Arvada’s Olde Town square on Monday afternoon.
As Troyke ran towards the square with a long gun, Hurley shot the suspect with a handgun, according to Arvada police.
“An Arvada police officer then met Mr. Hurley, who was holding the suspect’s AR-15,” the statement said. “The officer shot him.
“Arvada PD views Mr. Hurley’s actions as heroic; it is clear that he intervened in an active shooting that unfolded quickly in a busy shopping area in the middle of the day, and that he did so without hesitation. Mr. Hurley’s actions have certainly saved others from serious injury or death, ”Arvada police said in the statement.
Beesley and another officer carried out the welfare check, but failed to locate Troyke, after which they were sent to Olde Town Square to verify the report of a suspicious person, the statement said.
In surveillance footage of the incident, the suspect can be seen parking his truck behind Constable Beesley as he walks through a parking lot.
Troyke gets out of his truck with what police describe as a 12-caliber semi-automatic shotgun. Troyke shot the 19-year-old veteran twice, police said.
“Officer Beesley did not take his gun and take no defensive action – he simply turns around in response to the suspect who then shoots him and kills him,” the statement said.
The suspect then shot nearby patrol cars through the windows before returning to his truck to retrieve his AR-15, and back to the plaza, the statement said. Police say it was when he was shot by Hurley.
Police also confirm that they recovered a note from Troyke which contained a host of specific threats against the Arvada Police Department.
“Today I will kill as many Arvada officers as possible”, and “I just hope I don’t die without killing any of you pigs,” were among the threats set out in the document, according to the police.
Monday’s shooting sparked two separate investigations at this point, with the Arvada Police Department leading the investigation into Constable Beesley’s death. A multi-agency Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) is investigating the fatal Hurley shooting, the statement said.
“We want to be clear that although these two deaths occurred in the same incident, they are the subject of a separate investigation,” said Arvada PD.
“Finally, it is clear that the suspect bears responsibility for this tragic sequence of events,” adds the department.
Hurley’s Family Statement
Hurley’s family released a statement which was released by the district attorney’s office.
“Our beloved son and brother Johnny is gone. We loved him dearly. May he rest in peace. Before Johnny embarked on a lucid response to a dire situation, he was already a wonderful human being with great enthusiasm for life, ”the release said in part.
“We are deeply moved by the outpouring of love from the community and are grateful for the support of the Arvada Police Department and their partners. We do not yet have all the information on what happened to Johnny, and we look forward to hearing the result of a full and independent investigation.
“As a family, we ask that there be no media speculation while the facts are determined. It doesn’t help anyone. We ask that our privacy be respected while our grief is still so fresh. We ask that all media inquiries be directed to the office of the Judicial District First Prosecutor, ”the statement said.