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Who killed Gordon Beesley? Colorado cop was targeted in Denver as he 'wore uniform and badge'

Denver cop was 'deliberately targeted', claims police chief after standoff with shooter resulted in his death and that of a bystander
UPDATED JUN 23, 2021
Arvada Police Officer Gordon Beesley (@ArvadaPolice/Twitter)
Arvada Police Officer Gordon Beesley (@ArvadaPolice/Twitter)

ARVADA, COLORADO: Officer Gordon Beesley, who was with the Arvada Police Department in Colorado was killed after a standoff on June 21. Beesley was responding to a "suspicious incident" around 1:15 pm at the Olde Town neighborhood when he encountered the shooter. The standoff resulted in the death of both Beesley and the shooter, as well as an innocent bystander. 

The attack on Beesley comes amid repeated attacks against cops across the US. On June 1, a homeless man was seen attacking a San Francisco cop, who was helped by passersby to overpower and arrest the man. The same day, NYPD officer Nathaly Gomez Iglesias was attacked at her home by a gang member. On April 3, US Capitol Police Officer Billy Evans was mowed down while on duty. 


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With societies and politicians divided over the role of police forces in the US, cops are facing more danger than ever. In 2020, 336 officers were killed in the line of duty, and so far 154 have lost their lives in 2021. Officer Beesley joins them after an incident that the Arvada PD is calling "targeted'.

Mourners leave flowers at the spot where Officer Gordon Beesley was killed. (Twitter)

Who killed Officer Beesley?

The name of the shooter is yet to be revealed by the Arvada PD. In a press conference, Arvada Police Chief Link Strate did confirm Beesley was the victim of the shooting, and a passerby identified as John Hurley, of Golden was also killed. However, he did not name the shooter, citing that the investigation was ongoing. 

"While we don’t yet have all the facts, I can tell you that Gordon was targeted because he was wearing an Arvada Police uniform and a badge," Strate said. He added, "Officer Beesley was ambushed by a person who expressed hatred of police officers." It is unclear at the moment if the individual had previously targeted police officers, Strate did not provide any further details, but did confirm that the suspect's name would be released soon by the Jefferson County Coroner’s Office.

The Arvada PD will reportedly open a criminal investigation into the shooter's actions, with support from state and federal law enforcement. Jefferson County Sheriff Jeff Shrader also said a second investigation would be opened, to determine if police protocols were properly followed. At the moment, both investigations are in their primary stages as police are still collecting evidence from the scene, and witness statements. 

Officer Gordon Beesley reads to children at Peck Elementary School. (@SchoolPeck/Twitter)

A 19-year veteran of the Arvada PD, Beesley was responding to an incident near the Arvada Library when he was shot. At around 1.30 pm, several people dialed 911 to report gunshots and an officer down. On June 22, a prayer vigil was held for Beesley at Peace Lutheran Church. He is survived by a wife and two children. The Colorado Fallen Hero Foundation has opened a donation drive for Beesley's family. 

Apart from working with Arvada PD, Beesley was also a resource officer at Oberon Middle School and Excel Academy Charter School for 10 years. Beesley is the second Colorado officer to be killed this year. A cop was killed in the mass shooting in Boulder, that took place in May.