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Home  >  Topics  >  SWAT

November 16, 2003
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Colorado SWAT Team Kills Hostage-Taker; 2 Hostages Safe

By The Associated Press

AURORA, Colo. - A SWAT team blasted a hole through an apartment wall and stormed inside, killing a man in a gunbattle on Saturday after he had taken two hostages and fired on officers.

The hostages - the gunman's girlfriend and her 14-year-old son - were not injured. One officer was shot in the foot by the gunman, but he was treated and released at a hospital, Detective Rudy Herrera said.

No names were released, but Herrera said the gunman had a criminal record in Idaho.

The suspect began firing a shotgun at officers when they responded to a call from his girlfriend, who said he was firing shots in the apartment they shared.

The SWAT team and backup officers were called and nearby apartments were evacuated. Officers could hear voices inside the apartment, and police negotiators tried unsuccessfully to contact the gunman, Herrera said.

Officers decided to storm the apartment after hearing three shots and then silence.

Some officers charged through the door while others poured in through the hole blown open from an adjacent apartment with an explosive device, Herrera said. He could not provide further details.

The suspect fired at police again as they swarmed in, injuring the officer, Herrera said.

Officers fired back, fatally wounding the suspect. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The woman and her son were found in the apartment. They were taken to a hospital as a precaution.

City inspectors condemned at least four apartments because of structural damage caused by the explosion. The city provided housing for the displaced residents.

Police have no record of domestic violence calls at the apartment.

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