Westminster Gun-Down Second Fatal Metro-Area Police Shooting in Two Nights

In a post published yesterday about the decision not to charge the cop who gunned down Adrian Moya in December, we noted the high number of officer-involved shootings in Colorado of late — including one that killed a man in Lakewood on April 26.

Add another incident to that number.

Last night, April 27, in Westminster, police fatally shot a suspect.

Cops haven't identified that man yet, but authorities in Lakewood are now sharing more info about what went down there, as seen below.

First, the Westminster matter.

At around 9:50 p.m. on the 27th, according to the Westminster Police Department, officers were investigating a stolen vehicle on the 7300 block of Tennyson Street.

There they encountered an adult male who was thought to be associated with the car in question.

At that point, the WPD maintains, the man "presented a gun and fired shots at the officers" — four cops in total, Fox31 reports.

In response, some, but not all, of the officers returned fire, killing the suspect.

In addition, one officer suffered minor injuries. He was treated at the scene.

As for the Lakewood shooting, it took place at approximately 9:20 p.m. on April 26 — and it also involved an investigation into a stolen car.

Lakewood officers spotted a suspicious vehicle in the parking lot of the Motel 6 at 480 Wadsworth and watched as a man now identified as Robin Barber approached it.

When they attempted to contact Barber, he ran, kicking off a foot chase during which he allegedly fired shots at his pursuers. They shot back, killing him. Like the Westminster suspect, Barber was pronounced dead at the scene.

This was hardly Barber's first contact with police.

On July 7, 2015, cops in Avon responded to a report of a car crash at the Sunnyside condominiums, and soon determined that the vehicle had been burglarized along with seven others at that complex and two others nearby.

Barber and a woman, Kira Simpson, were arrested after a search of the hotel room where they were staying turned up what the Avon Police Department describes as "large amounts of stolen property and items purchased with stolen credit cards."

At this point, the shootings in Lakewood and Westminster are under investigation, so it's too soon to know if the officers who pulled the triggers will face criminal accusations. But such charges are exceedingly rare, especially when the suspects shoot first, as is said to have been the case in both of these episodes — and also in the Moya matter, in which 17th Judicial District DA Dave Young cleared the cop involved.

Below, see another booking photo of Barber as shared by the Lakewood Police Department, followed by a Fox31 report about last night's shooting in Westminster.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts