Attorney: Veteran killed by Aurora police saved grandson from naked intruder

AURORA, Colo. -- Details surrounding the killing of a Colorado veteran at the hands of the Aurora Police Department have been released by the attorney for the man's family.

The attorney, Siddhartha Rathod, said the veteran, Richard "Gary" Black, was inside his living room when a police officer opened fire.

Black was a U.S. Army lieutenant in the Vietnam War and was honored with the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. He went on to continue serving his country as a federal agent for the IRS, according to Rathod.

“There is no question that Mr. Black should be sitting here today,” Rathod said.

Black, his wife, their adult son and grandson were inside their home on Montview Boulevard at Iola Street on Monday morning when a naked man kicked down the door to their house, Rathod said.

The attorney, who has spoken to witnesses, said the man began assaulting Black's 11-year-old grandson, who was sleeping on the couch.

“The man grabs the 11-year-old … starts choking him and drags him into the bathroom trying to drown him and choke him in the bathroom,” Rathod said.

The family tells their attorney that Black struggled with the man, trying to pull him away. Meanwhile, Black's wife called 911.

“Calls police, tells the police my husband is wearing this,” Rathod said. “My son is wearing this. There’s a naked intruder ... describes the intruder.”

At some point, Black grabbed his 9 millimeter gun and shot the intruder twice, Rathod said.

During the mayhem the family said other intruders got into the house. Black, looking for other intruders, walked into his living room where he was shot by police, Rathod said.

It is unclear if police were inside or outside the house when an officer opened fire.

Black's wife told her attorney she was outside when police arrived and again described her husband to police, hoping to prevent the tragedy she’s now mourning.

The officer suspected of shooting Black is on paid administrative reassignment, according to the department.

Officials with the Aurora Police Department would not confirm or deny the details released by Rathod because of an ongoing investigation.

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