Why am I not surprised?
District Attorney Mitch Morrissey has cleared a Denver police officer of any criminal wrongdoing in the shooting death of a motorist on Feb. 26.
Officer Ed Ash, who's been on the force for three years, acted within his legal duties when he shot and killed Davlon Reagor, 37, whom he stopped for speeding at the intersection of East Fifth Avenue and Lafayette Street, Morrissey concluded. Ash fired nine rounds from close range through the windshield of the car Reagor was driving, hitting him twice.
Morrissey stated that Ash is still subject to administrative actions by the police department as well as civil lawsuits, where the burden of proof is lower than for criminal prosecution.
The incident began around 10 p.m. that Thursday night when a radar-patrol car spotted Reagor driving south on Speer Boulevard near Fifth and Broadway at 51 mph in a 35-mph zone. The radar officer radioed for assistance in stopping Reagor. Officer Ash, on DUI patrol, spotted the car, a 1986 maroon Ford Escort, and gave chase with his emergency lights on.
Both cars were headed east on Fifth Avenue when Reagor turned his headlights off and ran the stop sign at Downing Street, the report stated. So Officer Ash turned off his emergency equipment, with no explanation given.
Ash radioed for help, stating the vehicle he was chasing was "spinning around in the street."
He told investigators the Escort spun around and was driving in reverse, eastbound on Fifth Avenue. Near the intersection with Lafayette Street, a Toyota truck headed westbound swerved to miss the Escort, the report stated. Ash testified that the driver of the truck stopped, then began backing up. The report stated that the driver of the truck told police the Escort began making "donuts" in the street.
The Escort finally came to rest on Lafayette Street, pointing northbound a few feet south of Fifth Avenue.
The report stated Officer Ash stopped his cruiser about 5 feet away from the Escort, at a 45-degree angle from the Escort's left front bumper.
Ash told investigators he jumped out of his cruiser, drew his weapon, a 9mm Baretta with 16 rounds, and ran in front of his cruiser toward the Escort yelling, "Show me your hands." His headlights and spotlight were focused on the Escort. The report stated he radioed that he had the suspect at gunpoint.