Tactical expert weighs in on police chase, hostage situation in Denver

DENVER (KDVR) — Even though the suspect was shot at a hostage situation in Denver Friday night, he didn’t die, the hostage survived and, besides some property damage, there were no other casualties.

Tactical expert James Allbee said scenes like what happened in Denver on Friday have a top priority.

“Officer safety first, and then, obviously, we’ve got to take into consideration the community safety as well,” Allbee said.

Denver Police said it started as a road rage shooting earlier in the day. A man reported being shot at by someone in the same vehicle involved in the crash later that night.

Police found the vehicle later in the day, and monitored it until a group of people finally got inside. They followed it and that led to the chase that became a hostage situation on York Street and 35th Avenue.

Police said the suspect had a hostage at gunpoint, and after attempts to negotiate, an officer fired at the suspect.

“Deadly force was still used, but deadly force does not always mean that a person ends up deceased out of the whole thing,” Allbee said.

Police staked out the truck in this case for several hours.

“Time is a little bit more on their side because they had a couple of hours to actually formulate a plan,” Allbee said.

That plan allowed them to use resources to neutralize the situation, according to Allbee, starting with the truck, essentially making it immobile.

“Cop cars are easy to replace,” Allbee said. “People are not, so the way that they ended up executing this, from what I’ve seen, is absolutely on point.”

This incident can and will serve as a model, Allbee said, for future incidents.

“That’s what makes us better at our jobs,” Allbee said. “That’s what makes us better at planning and executing for the next time something like this comes up.”

Another dynamic is the collateral damage, which in this case was limited to a couple of police vehicles and the suspect’s truck.

Allbee said while any debriefing following situations like this will account for damages, the main goal was met: keeping everyone alive and the community safe.

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