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Commerce City Police involved in shootout while responding to unrelated homicide

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Posted at 7:36 PM, Aug 03, 2021

UPDATE | Aug. 13 — The suspect who was allegedly involved in a homicide and then a police shooting has been identified as Andrew Reineke, 27, of Commerce City. An arrest warrant has been issued for him on charges of first-degree murder, two counts of attempted first-degree murder, four counts of first-degree assault of a peace officer and three counts of felony menacing.

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COMMERCE CITY, Colo. — While responding to a call for shots fired, Commerce City Police officers were involved in a shootout that nearly injured one officer and sent one man to the hospital.

Officers were dispatched to the 7100 block of Grape Street at approximately 5:30 p.m. for a shots fired call. When officers arrived, they found a man who was down from multiple gunshot wounds, according to the Commerce City Police Chief Clint Nichols. He was later pronounced dead.

While on scene, two officers found a person matching the description provided by witnesses and followed him to an alley in the 6900 block of Fairfax Drive where they began speaking with him. This man told officers he had nothing to do with the deadly shooting, which the officers believed, Nichols said.

While still in the alley, a different man began firing at the officers. A bullet went through one officer's shirt sleeve, but he was not injured. Six officers total returned gunfire. The man shooting at the officers was shot, but it's unclear how many times, according to Nichols.

The injured man is at the hospital in surgery with multiple gunshot wounds. The other man police were first speaking to was not injured.

The officer who was nearly hit by gunfire is "a little shook up," but doing fine, the police chief said.

Several police officers with the Commerce City Police Department, Brighton Police Department and Adams County Sheriff's Office surrounded a home in the area of 69th Avenue and Fairfax Drive. At approximately 10 p.m., the chief said SWAT teams were clearing the residence to ensure there is no threat to the public.

The department originally said investigators were searching for possible additional suspects, but later determined they did not believe there was anyone else at large, according to a press release. A police presence remains in the area as the investigation continues.

A man with Commerce City Youth Athletics posted a Facebook video explaining to parents that kids are safe after shots rang out in the area. Watch the video below.

Approximately 50 people were in the area for a football practice at Fairfax Park when everything occurred. Luckily, all of the kids are accounted for, and none of them were hurt, but one family member, who did not wish to be named, said the situation was scary for everyone who was there.

"You would think it would be safe at a park to be practicing at, but nowadays, nowhere is safe," the family member said.

The 17th Judicial District Critical Incident Review Team will be investigating the shooting involving the officers, and the Commerce City Police Department will investigate the homicide they discovered when they initially responded.

There are no further details on the unrelated homicide at this time.

The incident comes on National Night Out, a yearly event to promote community-building and relationships with law enforcement across the country. Commerce City Police had multiple events set up, but because of the large police presence, officers couldn't make it to most of the events.

"I can probably speak for all law enforcement, these are troubling times, and we certainly understand the need to do a better job at policing our communities, but there is absolutely no reason for you to fire on a police officer," Nichols said. "At the end of the day, we are paid to be public servants and protect and provide safety for our community, and so for this to have occurred completely unrelated to anything is, quite frankly... I would love to tell you that it's a shock, but it's not. The attitude towards policing has gone sideways, and we need to find a way to correct that. So, troubling at best."

It also comes less than two months after Arvada Police Officer Gordon Beesley was killed in a shooting, as well as Good Samaritan John Hurley.

This is a developing story. Check back for more information as it becomes available.