Boulder County DA: Suspect who died at RTD garage killed himself; officer justified in use of force


BOULDER, Colo. — The Boulder County District Attorney’s Office announced Monday that a man who died at an RTD Park-n-Ride garage last month killed himself.

Additionally, the DA’s office said an officer who fired his weapon during the incident was justified in his use of force and that the shot did not cause the suspect’s death.

The incident started about 3:15 p.m on Nov. 1, when the Boulder Police Department received a request to check on the welfare of a woman who lived in an apartment at 3267 30th St.

“Minutes after the request was made, the person that made the request called police back indicating that the husband was leaving the residence with two children, ages 6 and 12, and possibly armed with a gun,” BPD said in a press release issued the day of the incident.

Officers began searching for the man, Jose Gallegos. Meanwhile, other officers responded to the 30th Street apartment and found the woman, Martha Sianez-Hernandez, dead.

Law enforcement spotted Gallegos’ vehicle and followed it to the Table Mesa RTD Park-N-Ride located on Table Mesa Drive next to U.S. Highway 36.

Officers contacted Gallegos on the parking structure’s top level. The two children were inside the vehicle.

In body camera footage released Monday, one can see law enforcement officers trying to negotiate with Gallegos on the fourth floor of the parking garage.

Gallegos told police that if they did not shoot him, he would jump. He also said he had a gun.

After about 20 minutes, Gallegos ran from the back of his vehicle toward the front. At that point, University of Colorado Boulder Police Sgt. Matt DeLaria, a member of BPD SWAT, fired his weapon, striking Gallegos in the thigh. However, the shot was not fatal, according to the DA.

Gallegos continued toward the 43-inch high wall and jumped over the edge. He died from multiple blunt-force injuries.

The children were unharmed.

No firearm was recovered at the scene.

The DA’s office says that while speaking with officers, Gallegos admitted to killing his wife and that she had been dead for four days.

“The Boulder Police Department determined Gallegos was solely responsible for the death of his wife, Martha Sianez-Hernandez. The Boulder Police Department presented the investigation to the District Attorney’s Office, which determined, if Gallegos survived, he would have been prosecuted for the domestic violence murder,” the DA’s office said in a statement.

BPD urged anyone dealing with domestic violence to reach out for help. In case of an emergency, call 911. Otherwise, BPD says to call the department at 303-441-3333 or CU Boulder police at: 303-492-6666.

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