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Kelly Acosta: Reward increased for information into the murder of Aurora bartender

Posted at 9:08 PM, Aug 10, 2017

AURORA, Colo. -- Almost six months after an Aurora bartender was shot and killed trying to stop a robbery, law enforcement are increasing the reward money being offered for information that may lead them to the murder suspect.

Kelly Acosta was shot and killed near an apartment complex in Aurora in February of 2017, but no arrests have been made in the case. Before Thursday, a total sum of $27,000 was being offered for info leading to the suspect in the murder. Now, Aurora Police announced that amount has been raised to $40,000.

The money being offered comes from several different agencies: The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) is offering $10,000, Aurora Police is offering $7,000, Denver Metro Crimestoppers is pitching in $2,000, and a memorial fund raised by family and friends is adding $21,000 to the reward.

“We will continue to do anything and everything we can for Kelly until this person is caught,” Kelly’s friend and former boss Melanie Calkins told Denver7.

There are still pictures and memories of Kelly on the walls of the Emerald Isle bar and restaurant in Aurora where he worked as a bartender. Nearly six months later, the emotions are still raw inside.

“We all cry everyday because we miss him so much,” Melanie said. “And the most important thing is we need some sort of peace with this. And until his killer is caught we won’t have that peace.”

The increase in reward could mean one step closer to that peace.  

“Somebody could do the right thing and step up and turn them in for the money. And I’d pay twice as much,” friend Tim Robles said.

Anyone with information on the robbery or shooting is asked to call Sergeant Matt Fyles with the Major Crimes/Homicide Unit at (303)739-6041. Anonymous tipsters can call Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at (720) 913-7867.