Arvada robbery suspect shot off-duty Denver officer after officer’s gun jammed, prosecutors say


GOLDEN, Colo. – The man accused of shooting an off-duty Denver police officer after an armed robbery in Arvada on Wednesday had a 2-year-old child in his car during the incident and fired a shot at the officer after the officer’s gun jammed, prosecutors said in court on Thursday morning.

Samuel McConnell, 43, was arrested on charges of attempted first-degree murder and aggravated robbery in the case. Prosecutors in court said McConnell confessed to a series of robberies but it was unclear whether he confessed to the shooting.

He fled the shooting in a Chevy Equinox and was later taken into custody Wednesday.

The officer, a detective whose name has not been released yet, was hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries and was in stable condition on Wednesday.

The officer had noticed that a gas station at West 80th Avenue and Kipling Street in Arvada was being robbed and he tried to intervene. When McConnell encountered the officer, prosecutors said, the officer’s gun jammed and then McConnell shot him.

Prosecutors argued that McConnell had a chance to walk away but decided to shoot the officer anyway.

McConnell’s next appearance is set for Dec. 27 at 10 a.m.

Denver Police Chief Paul Pazen in a news conference Wednesday said a family member of the detective was with him at the time of the shooting and was able to provide immediate emergency care.

Pazen praised the detective for his quick action.

“The investigator displayed great courage — interrupting somebody that’s armed and dangerous and taking action in order to protect our community. This detective should be recognized for the immediate action that they took,” Pazen said.