A crash, a call for help and a mental health crisis: How a Boulder man’s 911 call ended with a deputy killing him

Body camera footage shows police response descend into violence

Elise Schmelzer
The Denver Post

SILVER PLUME — Christian Glass called 911 for help after crashing his car into an embankment in Silver Plume — he needed someone to unstick his car.

Instead, a Clear Creek County deputy who responded shot and killed Glass in the early hours of June 11 as the 22-year-old experienced a mental health crisis. For an hour and nine minutes, seven officers with a variety of agencies tried to coax Glass out of the car.

Eventually, they decided to break the window and physically pull him out — despite not being suspected of a crime. In the chaos that ensued, Glass grabbed a knife and officers Tased and shot him with beanbags in an attempt to force him to drop it. Instead, Glass twisted in the driver’s seat and thrust it toward an officer standing next to the shattered window behind him, prompting the deputy to shoot him.

Attorneys for Glass’ family on Tuesday publicly released hours of body camera footage depicting the shooting and said officers never should have escalated the situation to the point where lethal force was considered.

“There was no need to threaten him with force; to draw guns; to break his car window; to fire beanbag rounds from a close distance; to tase him; to shoot him dead,” the Rathod Mohamedbhai law firm said in a news release. “From beginning to end, the officers on scene acted unconscionably and inhumanely.”


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