PUEBLO – News5 has obtained bodycam video of an officer-involved shooting in January 22, 2018 that resulted in the death of a suspect and eight officers on administrative leave during the investigation.
The short video clip within this story starts with extremely loud noises one might confuse with static, but it is the sheer intensity of gunfire aimed at the suspect that overloads the microphone on an officer’s chest.
All of the officers involved in the dangerous chase and shootout with Joe Delira-Alires were cleared of any wrongdoing in the shooting.
According to the final report on the shooting, Delira-Alires was high on narcotics while threatening his ex and her children by firing shots in the air outside her E. 9th Street home in the early evening of January 22nd. It was determined he was trying to force her to let him inside.
Officers arrived to hear rapid-fire gunshots, but the suspect was able to get into an SUV and leave the area. One officer mistakenly thought he was hit by gunfire when he felt a “burning sensation” on his arm, but at the time officers did not return fire.
During a chase, Delira-Alires avoided several attempts to end the pursuit before an officer used the Pursuit Intervention Tecnique (PIT) to disable the vehicle. Delira-Alires fired at officers multiple times as he ran from the scene.
About a block later all of the officers caught up to him. The officers reported the suspect was in a seated position on the ground as he fired in their direction. That’s when all of the officers fired their weapons.
A lull in the shooting contains audio of officers ordering him to show his hands. The shooting from officers as they reported seeing the suspect throw something over a fence then reaching for his waistband.
The 10th Judicial District Critical Incident Team investigated the shooting and ruled the officers’ use of deadly force was justified. Processing of the scene revealed 7 shell casings for a 9mm pistol, along with 1 unfired round, within 3 feet of Delira-Alires’ body. A Taurus 9mm with the slide locked in the open position was found nearby on the other side of a chain link fence.
The cause of death was determined to be multiple gunshot wounds, including 13 to the torso, 11 to the pelvis, and 8 to the arms and legs, which caused traumatic damage throughout the body.
The shooting involved Pueblo police officers Michael Bellamy, Thomas DeCesaro, Bernadette Lambert, Nicholas Lile, Jonathan McCluskey, Eufracio “J.J.” Ortiz, Alan Wilson and Sergeant Randall Ramos.
In the weeks after the shooting the Pueblo Police Department had to move officers’ shifts around to cover the absence those involved on one shift.