AURORA, Colo. (KDVR) — Eighteenth Judicial District Attorney George Brauchler ordered the review of an incident involving Aurora police officers detaining a family in a mistaken stolen car situation on Sunday.
“Everyone is entitled to be treated equally under the law. No one is above the law. If our investigation determines that the officers involved committed a crime, I will not hesitate to file charges and prosecute them,” Brauchler said. “I intend to investigate this matter thoroughly and with appropriate haste. I will announce the outcome of our investigation to the public upon its conclusion.”
One adult and four children – including two teens, a 12-year-old, and a 6-year-old girl – were removed from the vehicle at an Aurora thrift store parking lot on the morning of Aug. 2.
Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson said the vehicle they were in had a license plate number that matched a stolen vehicle from a different state, which caused confusion.
The older girls were placed in handcuffs while they were on the ground.
“I also recognize and share the concern over what transpired which is why I immediately ordered an internal affairs investigation,” Wilson said. “I have promised transparency to a community who not only demands it, but deserves it. I not only welcome this review, but am fully cooperating with the 18th Judicial Districts Attorney’s office.”
Brauchler added to his statement: “My hope and our system’s obligation is for all citizens to be treated with dignity and respect during encounters with law enforcement officers. I know Chief Wilson has also ordered an internal affairs investigation and is examining her agency’s training and procedures. That is appropriate, but that is separate from a criminal investigation.”