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Demonstrators demand transparency at state Capitol following LoDo shooting

Demonstrators take to the Colorado State Capitol to demand transparency following LoDo shooting
Posted at 5:43 AM, Jul 22, 2022

DENVER — On Thursday, demonstrators gathered on the steps of the Colorado Capitol to demand transparency following a shooting early Sunday morning in downtown Denver.

During a press conference on Wednesday, the Denver Police Department shared additional details on the shooting that happened around 1:30 a.m. on Sunday near 20th and Larimer streets, including still images of the moments leading up to the gunfire. Denver police said three of their officers fired seven shots after a suspect pointed a gun in the direction of officers.

Various community organizers have taken to social media to express disapproval of DPD's press conference, saying it fell short of providing transparency.

"We need to see the release of the unedited body camera footage immediately, and DPD can claim that they’ve met that demand all they want, but they’ve only released photos and they’ve not released the unedited videos," said Jonce Palmer, a lead organizer of the Aurora Community Action Committee.

Demonstrators take to Colorado Capitol to demand transparency following LoDo police shooting

In a statement, the police department said it did not release the body camera video on Wednesday to protect the investigation. The agency said their decision follows standard protocol after an officer-involved shooting.

In addition to calls for the body camera footage to be released, demonstrators want a civilian police accountability council to created and restitution provided to the bystanders who were injured in the shooting.

"When we hear the police talk, it's always with many grains of salt... We have to wait for reporters to verify it and we have to wait for individuals to put in records requests and piece the story together themselves," said Andres Alvarez, of the Denver Democratic Socialists of America. "So long as there is not any kind of citizen oversight over the police forces, there will never be any type of transparency that we can reliably trust."

Councilwoman At Large Robin Kniech, the chairperson of Denver City Council's Safety, Housing and Homelessness Committee, released a statementThursday evening about the shooting, saying, in part, "I share the deep distress of our community over the gun-related injuries suffered by six bystanders."