DENVER (KDVR) — The Denver Department of Public Safety released body camera video of a bizarre shooting at the downtown jail that nearly killed a police officer.
Officer Jordan Archuleta was shot in the neck, allegedly by suspect Daniel Cheeseman, as Cheeseman was about to be booked following his arrest earlier that night on Nov. 28.
Video: Suspect shoots with hidden 2nd gun
The video that the Problem Solvers obtained through a public records request includes body camera video from Archuleta, his partner Alicia Martinez and Cpl. Thomas Schmidt, who would shoot Cheeseman multiple times in defense of his fellow officers.
The video takes place inside the sally port of the Downtown Detention Center, where suspects are brought to be processed into the jail.
Cheeseman had been arrested by Archuleta and Martinez on counts of theft of a motor vehicle, drug possession and felon in possession of a gun in the 1600 block of South Michigan Way just before 11 p.m.
During a search of Cheeseman, officers discovered a “black high capacity handgun” and a “very large quantity of suspected fentanyl” inside the 33-year-old’s backpack. Denver Police Chief Ron Thomas would later say the officers failed to find a second gun that Cheeseman had hidden on his body.
It’s that second handgun that police say Cheeseman used, with his hands cuffed behind his back, to fire four shots at Archuleta as the officer opened the rear driver’s side door to let Cheeseman out of his patrol car.
The body camera video shows the gunfire as Archuleta is shot one time through his neck. Amazingly, the police chief has said the bullet hit nothing vital and Archuleta was released from Denver Health Medical Center the next day.
Schmidt, the corporal whose footage shows was in a white patrol car next to the black car Cheeseman had been transported in, jumped out of his car and managed to shoot Cheeseman multiple times.
Wife of police shooting suspect reviews video
“He’s (Daniel Cheeseman) paralyzed from the neck down and he’s not breathing on his own,” said Stephanie Cheeseman, the wife of Daniel Cheeseman.
In an exclusive interview with FOX31 last week, Stephanie Cheeseman said she didn’t believe the police version of events, telling the Problem Solvers there was no way her husband would shoot an officer as he’s about to booked into jail.
“He wasn’t suicidal. Like, everybody knows that if you shoot a cop, I mean, there’s only one outcome to that,” she said.
“He wasn’t suicidal. He knows I was going to bond him out. Like he wouldn’t have done that, especially in the sally port, like that doesn’t even make sense,” she said.
When asked who shot Archuleta in the neck if it wasn’t her husband, Cheeseman replied, “I don’t know exactly what happened, but I think him and the officer were shot with the same gun.”
The video released by the City of Denver confirms that Denver Police told the truth from the beginning.
When Stephanie Cheeseman was asked if the body camera did show her husband shot an officer, then she acknowledged her husband should be held accountable.
“Yeah. I mean, absolutely. If it happened the way that they say that it did, then what can I say? You know what I mean?” she said. “I mean, I love him to death. I’ll always love him, but I can’t, I mean, I can’t say that he was right. You know, I can’t say that the police are wrong for doing what they did.”
Suspect paralyzed after Denver jail shooting
Cheeseman told FOX31 her husband was shot six times, including once in the neck, which she said has left him paralyzed from below the neck and unable to speak. Cheeseman said she has not been allowed to visit her husband in the hospital.
He has not been formally charged by the Denver District Attorney’s Office because he remains hospitalized.
Daniel Cheeseman faces two counts of attempted murder of a peace officer and possession of a weapon by a previous offender. Denver Police say the officers involved in the sally port shooting remain in a “modified duty status in our reintegration program.”
In addition, a department spokesperson emailed FOX31 to say the DPD Internal Affairs Bureau will review the circumstances of the shooting “for any potential policy violations” after the district attorney’s office issues its decision letter.
It’s possible that Archuleta and Martinez, the officers who arrested Cheeseman, could face discipline for a failure to find the man’s second gun.