DOUGLAS COUNTY, Colo., Dec. 31, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — The shooting death of a Colorado sheriff’s deputy was streamed live by the assailant on social media.
One sheriff’s deputy was killed in the incident and four others were wounded. Two civilians were also wounded.
Gephardt Daily obtained more than an hour of video which shows the lead-up to the attack, as well the shooting itself.
The video also shows the gunman, identified as 37-year-old Matthew Riehl, in the aftermath of the initial ambush during which time he shoots a wounded deputy at point blank range.
The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Lead Public Information Officer Lauren Lekander confirmed the video’s authenticity to Gephardt Daily.
“We are aware of the video and it is being evaluated as part of the ongoing investigation,” she said.
Lekander also confirmed the Sheriff’s Office had requested the video be removed from Periscope, shortly after the incident. Periscope quickly complied.
News of the live streaming comes on the heels of other reports saying the shooter was known to law enforcement because of his postings on social media.
“We were familiar with him and some of his videos prior to the incident,” Lekander said. “We had seen the Twitter and Periscope videos he was creating. I had been watching him for maybe a week’s time and there was no legitimate quantifiable threats that we could act on. They were certainly strange.”
Warning: The clip above contains graphic audio and may be disturbing to some listeners. This excerpt demonstrates the firepower deputies encountered during the initial attack. It does not show the law enforcement officers being shot.
Early in the video, Riehl — who was later killed by law enforcement officers — became angry when deputies came to his apartment door to talk about a restraining order he wished to file against his domestic partner.
Riehl refused to cooperate, demanding to speak with the deputies’ supervisor. He also demanded to see a search warrant, and refused to let officers into his apartment.
The deputies retreated after the suspect shut the door and announced repeatedly he was going to bed.
The deputies ultimately returned, along with backup. According to Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock, officers were let into the apartment by someone inside, and had just made contact with the Riehl in his bedroom when he suddenly opened fire.
One of the deputies was then mortally wounded. The three others were also hit, but managed to crawl from the apartment.
While the live stream played out on the Internet, the gunman continued to rant before approaching the gravely wounded deputy and shooting him multiple times at point blank range.
Moments later, he rummaged through the downed deputy’s pockets, saying that he was looking for a search warrant.
“There’s no warrant,” he exclaimed. “It’s illegal search and seizure! This is a classic courtroom defense!”
He then shot the deputy again.
As the video progresses, the gunman’s audio becomes muffled. He’s then seen wearing a gas mask while he appears to wait for more officers to arrive.
The gunman continued to fire multiple weapons throughout the morning.
He was ultimately shot and killed by police, one of whom was wounded in the exchange of gunfire.
Late Sunday afternoon, the deputy who lost his life was identified as 29-year-old Douglas County Sheriff’s Deputy Zackari Parrish. He was described as a veteran law enforcement officer, and leaves behind a wife and two young children.
The other injured law enforcement officers have been identified as Deputy Michael Doyle, 28, Deputy Taylor Davis, 30, Deputy Jeffrey Pelle, 32, and Castle Rock Police Officer Tom O’Donnell, 41. All of them are described in stable condition.