| Crime |

Jason Mesaros, Pot Robbery Suspect: DA Clears Cops Who Shot Him Ten Times

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Jason Mesaros was suspected of taking part in an armed robbery that netted two pounds of marijuana and between ten and fifteen pounds worth of trim. 

But he won't go on trial for his crimes.

He was killed after being riddled by bullets — ten in all — following a chase this past November.

And now, 17th Judicial District DA Dave Young has deemed the shooting to be justified.

The account of the incident is contained in Young's decision letter, on view below in its entirety.

At approximately 9:33 a.m. on November 10, 2015, the document notes, Boulder County Sheriff's Office deputies were dispatched to 5220 Sunshine Canyon in Boulder County.

The area is captured in the following interactive graphic. If you have problems seeing the image, click "View on Google Maps."

Upon their arrivals, deputies chatted with the homeowner, who said he'd granted entry to a pair of men, later identified as Mesaros and Garrett Mendes, because they knew his trimmer, Donna Gritzo.

The men asked if they could buy some pot, and when the homeowner replied that he didn't have any marijuana for sale, one of the men drew a handgun and demanded, "Give me your weed."

The homeowner responded by running downstairs and locking himself in his bathroom. But the men allegedly kicked the door open, dragged the homeowner upstairs, duct-taped his wrists and ankles, and pistol-whipped him.

One of the intruders said, "I'm fuckin' serious. I'll shoot you," and fired a shot into a nearby couch before handing the gat to his compatriot and dumping the cannabis and trim he was able to find in a blanket.

The homeowner watched the men drive off in a 2012 Chevy Tahoe, and cops soon spotted the ride. But the suspects got away after a chase during which they reportedly reached speeds of around 100 miles per hour while barreling down Highway 128.

In the meantime, however, investigators were able to tie the truck to Mesaros and his wife, Alishia Pitcher, and they soon zeroed in on a residence at 14560 Yosemite Street in Brighton.

There, they eyeballed the Tahoe in the home's open garage, and after obtaining a search warrant, they found the marijuana and discovered that the vehicle had sustained significant front-end damage.

In addition, they quizzed a man who was living there.

The man said he'd received text messages from Mesaros.

One of them read, "Make the Tahoe disappear for me."

Another stated, "You don't know me if anyone asks."

At that point, an arrest warrant was issued for Mesaros, and the Boulder County Drug Task Force found another address with which he was associated: 6005 Fox Hill Drive in Longmont.

Longmont police staked out the residence, and that evening, they saw two vehicles leave it: a Ford F-350 pickup and a Honda Prelude.

After the Ford and the Honda headed east on Highway 119, officers tried conducting simultaneous traffic stops.

They succeeded with the Honda — it was driven by Pitcher, Mesaros's wife, although she claimed not to know him. But the truck just kept going — at least until the Colorado State Patrol managed to bring it to a halt on Highway 85 using stop sticks and what's known as a "tactical vehicle intervention" maneuver.

Once the truck was stationary, multiple uniformed officers surrounded the car — and the letter maintains that they could see Mesaros inside with a silver semi-automatic handgun.

At first, Mesaros pointed the gun under his chin in what seems to have been the start of a possible suicide attempt. But then, the letter allows, the muzzle dropped and the officers thought it was pointed at them. Four of them opened fire — and they kept squeezing their triggers.

The medical examination found that "the decedent had a total of ten penetrating gunshot wounds to the left upper torso and left arm areas. The wounds to the torso were considered to be fatal wounds, as they compromised the heart and lungs."

A toxicology report found that Mesaros had opiates, cocaine and Oxycodone in his system at the time of his death.

In his legal analysis, DA Young focuses on Mesaros's gun and the perception by the cops in question that he would use it against them. In a section about three of the law enforcers, Young writes: "Each officer explained that at the time they fired their weapons, they were in fear for their own life, as well as the lives of their fellow officers due to the close proximity and the relative ease of which the suspect could turn to fire the weapon on them."

As such, Young maintains that "the evidence does not support the filing of any criminal charges" against the officers.

According to the Boulder Daily Camera, Mendes was busted in Greeley a week after Mesaros was killed. He faces charges that include second-degree kidnapping, as does trimmer Gritzo.

Look below to see a Mesaros booking photo from Larimer County, followed by the decision letter.

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