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Colorado US House Dems ask DOJ inspector general to probe law enforcement's handling of shooting suspect

Man contacted Denver police, FBI about McLeod in early 2021
Denver and Lakewood shooting spree Dec 27 2021
Posted at 4:24 PM, Jan 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-13 20:47:08-05

DENVER – The four Democratic members of the U.S. House of Representatives from Colorado wrote to the Department of Justice’s inspector general Thursday asking him to investigate what information was shared between law enforcement agencies about the man who killed five people in an attack across Denver and Lakewood late last month.

“We have serious concerns regarding the sharing of information and the response of law enforcement officials and whether it was adequate, timely and thorough,” wrote Reps. Ed Perlmutter, Jason Crow, Diana DeGette and Joe Neguse in the letter to Department of Justice Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz.

“We request your office conduct an investigation into whether law enforcement agencies were aware of the severity of the threats from the gunman, the actions taken in response to these threats including the closure of investigations, and whether information sharing among agencies was adequate,” they continued.

The gunman, identified as Lyndon McLeod, killed five people and injured two others in the shooting rampage. Among those injured was Lakewood Police Agent Ashley Ferris, who was shot but also shot and killed McLeod in return. She was released from the hospital a week ago.

Denver police acknowledged earlier this month they had received a tip in January 2021 from a German man who contacted Denver 311 and the FBI warning that McLeod “may commit a terrorist attack.” The man, as The Denver Post reported, had read McLeod’s extremist writings and was concerned enough about those and things McLeod had said in chat rooms that he contacted authorities.

A Denver police spokesperson previously confirmed in December that McLeod had twice been investigated in the past – one time in mid-2020 and again in early 2021 – but they provided few details about the investigations, only saying they did not lead to criminal charges.

A spokesperson for DPD said earlier this month the department had gotten a tip “citing several concerns involving Lyndon McLeod” but that McLeod was not living in Denver. The spokesperson said an investigator contacted a potential theft or fraud victim who lived out of state and found there was no connection to Denver. But the department also said it was reviewing that initial investigation.

The FBI’s Denver office has not commented on the shooting or the investigation.

The members of Congress wrote to the inspector general that news reports about what was reported to authorities were “concerning.”

“It is critical we understand who knew what information and when, and how this information was shared and acted upon in order to identify and close any gaps in the information sharing process among law enforcement,” they wrote.