Suicidal man found dead after police standoff in Castle Rock

Police had received multiple calls about man's state of mind

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A tip from a suicide hotline led to a standoff between the Castle Rock Police Department and an unidentified man on Sept. 7. After more than five hours, police robots found the suicidal man dead.

The standoff lasted hours into the night, preventing residents in the area of Red Hawk Drive and Wolfensberger Road from going home, or keeping those who were at their homes from leaving due to a stay-in-place CodeRed alert.

According to the Castle Rock police report, officers had received multiple calls about the man in the days before the Sept. 7 incident.

Officers’ initial contact with the man occurred on Sept. 6, the day before the standoff, during a welfare check in the 1400 block of Red Hawk Drive after a friend contacted authorities expressing concern about the man’s state of mind.

During the Sept. 6 welfare check, the police report said the man refused to meet with officers and became agitated with their presence. Not wanting to make the situation worse, officers opted to leave, according to the report.

Later that night, officers again tried to contact the man via telephone. According to the report, during the call that lasted nearly 1 1/2 hours, the officer worked to convince the Castle Rock man to get help for his continued suicidal thoughts.

At that time, the police report said he again declined assistance, with the officer agreeing to check in on him again on Sept. 7.

On the morning of Sept. 7, the Castle Rock Police Department was contacted by a suicide hotline that stated they had been on the phone with the man who was threatening to shoot himself.  Castle Rock police were also contacted by a family member who said he was making suicidal statements and creating concerning posts on social media.

An officer again reached out to the man via telephone and spoke with him. He continued to make suicidal statements and refused to meet with officers, threatening to shoot at officers if they came to his home, the report said.

According to the report. after an hour of negotiating, the man told officers he was going to shoot himself, and a gunshot was heard over the phone.  There was no response from the subject and police and medical personnel were dispatched to his residence to render medical aid. 

Upon arrival, the police report said officers approached the man’s apartment. The man, who was alive and uninjured, began threatening to shoot at officers on scene, claiming he had multiple weapons in his possession, the report said.

The Castle Rock police report said that following the threats of violence and claims of having multiple weapons, a perimeter was established. Not knowing if the gunshot fired by the subject had entered an adjacent apartment, officers began contacting neighbors to check their welfare, evacuate them or have them shelter in place, the report said.

The Douglas County Regional SWAT team was contacted and negotiations with the man continued. According to the report, over a five-hour period, crisis negotiators asked the man to exit and surrender to officers. These requests were all met with refusal. Several tactics were employed in the attempt to secure the safe surrender of the subject, including:

  • Repeated announcements over a loudspeaker
  • Telephone negotiations
  • Sound and light diversion devices
  • The deployment of chemical irritants
  • The breaching of several doors and windows

No gunshots were fired by officers. After all efforts to get the man to surrender were exhausted, a robot was deployed inside the residence. The robot found the man lying dead inside, according to the report.

The Douglas County Coroner’s Office arrived on scene and is handling the death investigation.

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