DENVER -- A split race failed to get incumbent Mayor Michael Hancock enough votes to immediately secure another term in office.
Because Hancock did not secure 50 percent plus one vote, the victor will be decided in a runoff election between the incumbent candidate and Jamie Giellis on June 4.
FULL RESULTS: Denver elections results
Of the six candidates running for mayor, three were considered major candidates who poised a threat to Hancock: Giellis, Lisa Calderon and Penfield Tate.
All challenged the incumbent mayor in his bid to secure a third term in office.
As of 1 a.m. Wednesday, Hancock had earned 39.1 percent of the vote, while Giellis had roughly 25.7 percent.
Opponents cast the 45th mayor of Denver in a negative light, saying his leadership has resulted in the high cost of rent, homelessness and heavy traffic.
In his defense, the mayor described himself as "the most experienced candidate in the race" and touted the city's economic growth.
In a promise to help Denver thrive in his next term, Hancock said he could address the challenges of "a growing, prosperous city."
In an interview with FOX31, Hancock defended his administration's policies, including homeless sweeps and development policies.
Hancock was first elected to office in 2011 and reelected in 2015.
For her part, Giellis is credited with helping revitalize the River North area. The urban planner is a former TV journalist who ran a grassroots campaign with enough traction to stop Hancock from winning outright.
Giellis conducted several neighborhood bus tours over the last year with the goal of increasing name recognition.
She also took aim at the text messaging scandal that tainted Hancock's clean image, saying the issue was "top-of-mind."
Giellis has distinguished herself from other candidates in the race by promising a commitment to rebuilding the streetcar network in Denver to improve transportation.AlertMe