A police officer who was one of three people killed in a shooting in a Denver suburban business district was a school resource officer known for developing relationships with students, city officials said.
Police have not explained why the shooting began Monday in which the suspect and a man they described as a “Samaritan” were also killed near a library in downtown Arvada that houses shops, restaurants, breweries and other popular businesses.
Authorities said they will release more information about the shooting Tuesday afternoon. The identities of the other two deceased people have not been released.
The shooting happened in Olde Town Arvada, the downtown district with shops, restaurants, breweries and other businesses. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is located about 7 miles (10 kilometers) northwest of downtown Denver.
Officer Gordon Beesley was working on patrol when police said he was hit by gunfire shortly after a reported shooting in downtown Arvada.
Beesley worked for the Arvada Police Department for 19 years as a patrol officer and as a motorcycle traffic officer before being assigned to work with students at Oberon Middle School.
According to his school resource officer’s bio, he played drums in a band and enjoyed walking, biking, skiing, and camping with his family. His motto was “Look for the good in every day.”
The Boulder Police Department (BPD) said the officer killed in the shooting is 51-year-old Eric Talley and had been with BPD since 2010.
In 2015, Beesley began cycling to school alongside a developmentally delayed seventh grader after learning that he was genuinely interested in bicycles but that his mother didn’t want him to ride alone, according to a story from KUSA-TV.
The Arvada shooting came three months after a gunman opened fire and killed 10 people, including a police officer, at a supermarket in Boulder, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) northwest of Arvada.