DENVER (KDVR) — The executive director of the Denver Department of Public Safety said body camera video and video from the city’s High Activity Location Observation cameras showing a July officer-involved shooting that injured innocent bystanders likely will be released on Aug. 16.
“Currently, we are awaiting the defense counsel decision if they object to the release. If they do not object, it is my understanding that the release will occur on August 16 (since I have been told DA (Beth) McCann does not object to the release),” Armando Saldate III said, in an email to the Problem Solvers.
Saldate spoke in front of the Citizen Oversight Board Friday morning, sharing details of the investigation into the July 17 shooting that wounded six innocent people.
Under the law, a police department must release body-worn camera video within 21 days after someone files a complaint of potential officer misconduct with the agency.
Saldate said a judge issued an order that would set Aug.16 as the targeted date.
Currently, multiple investigations related to the incident are ongoing, he said.
The Denver Police Department is investigating the suspect who is accused of flashing a gun, prompting officers to fire their weapons near a crowded lower downtown intersection.
The Denver Police Homicide Division, the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, the Colorado State Patrol, and the district attorney’s office are conducting an investigation into whether any of the officers’ actions were criminal.
“In this case, the DA herself, Beth McCann, responded to the scene that night to begin monitoring the investigation and begin monitoring the interviews and all such things,” Saldate said.
The DPD Internal Affairs Bureau and the Office of the Independent Monitor will also be investigating the professional conduct of the officers, including whether or not they violated policy.
However, the OIM’s investigation will proceed more thoroughly after DPD’s criminal investigation is completed.
“At that time, we’re able to review the evidence that was collected by major crimes. We’re able to have a more one-on-one discussion with internal affairs, and we’re more involved in the administrative investigation than we actually are with the criminal investigation,” Crittenden, Denver’s interim independent monitor said.
He said the OIM would not be privy to all of the evidence while the case is being investigated criminally. He said that is a standard process.
“During the criminal investigation stage, which is where the case is right now, we get called out on the night of the incident, “Crittenden said. “We’re then allowed to listen to the interviews that major crimes is doing regarding the shooting. We’re also allowed to listen to the interviews with the subject officers if they’re done at a different date, and so, we’re able to watch and also ask questions. We’re allowed to recommend questions to major crimes…to the witnesses or to the subject officers.”
Crittenden said he had also already been given access to “some” body-worn camera and HALO footage.
The Citizen Oversight Board hopes to hire an independent monitor soon. They recently reposted the job after failing to hire a candidate several months ago.
The city has been without a permanent independent monitor since January 2021.