Update: Earlier this week, Zachary Cooper was arrested in regard to a homicide near the intersection of 28th and Adams near City Park; see our previous coverage below.
Now, we've obtained the arrest affidavit in the case, and the narrative is shocking. According to the document, also shared here, Cooper is a recently discharged member of the military who beat an elderly family friend to death under the delusion that the victim was the devil and he was God.
At 6:46 p.m. on October 15, the document notes that the Denver police communications center received a 911 call from Janet Segura, Cooper's mom. She said her son had assaulted seventy-year-old Peter Morales, known to him as "Uncle Tony," with a baseball bat.
Segura told the dispatcher she thought Morales was dead. She added that Cooper claimed he had "killed the devil."
Unfortunately, Segura was right about Morales. Officers soon discovered his body face down next to a bed, with a broken baseball bat near his head. When a paramedic rolled Morales over, he made another grisly discover: The man's throat had been cut. However, the Denver coroner's office has determined that he died as a result of blunt-force injuries.
Cooper was leaving the residence just as the cops arrived and was quickly taken into custody. He was nude at the time.
Shortly thereafter, an investigator sat down with his visibly distraught mom. She revealed that Cooper had been discharged from the military earlier in the year and had been living with her on and off since then.
On the 15th, she had left home to run some errands, and upon her return a couple of hours later, she found Cooper wearing a red bathrobe. However, he soon abandoned this garment and sat down naked on the sofa beside her.
As he wrote on a dry-erase board, Cooper allegedly told his mother what she'd already recounted to police -- he'd killed the devil. He added that he was God, reassured her that everything was going to be okay and claimed to be in heaven.
If so, he's changed locations since then. Cooper is currently being held without bond in Denver jail.
Look below to see a larger version of Cooper's mug shot and the arrest affidavit, followed by our previous coverage. In the meantime, our sincere condolences to Morales's friends, family and loved ones.
Continue for our previous coverage of the homicide near City Park. Update, 1:34 p.m. October 16: As the day has progressed, the Denver Police Department has released more information about a homicide that took place yesterday evening on the 2800 block of Adams Street, not far from City Park.
The latest? The DPD has released the name, age and mug shot of the man taken into custody last night after a man was found dead following an assault report. He's Zachary Cooper, 25. He's being held on suspicion of first-degree murder. Look below to see our previous coverage.
Update, 9:23 a.m.: Earlier this morning, we reported about a homicide on the 2800 block of Adams, not far from City Park.
We've now spoken to Denver Police Department spokesman Sonny Jackson about the crime.
While the information remains sketchy at this writing, we can share a few more details about what took place and what's next in terms of the investigation. The new information is followed by our original post, which includes photos from the scene.
"We got a call at about 6:46 p.m. yesterday about an assault," Jackson says. "Officers responded and found one male deceased inside a home, and immediately arrested a suspect."
At this point, no information is being released about the victim, the person under arrest or even what killed the man in question. "We're not sure exactly what caused the man's death," Jackson says. "The coroner will determine that. But we can confirm that it is being investigated as a homicide, and the investigation is continuing."
Here's our previous coverage.
Original post, 5:51 a.m.: Talk about playing it close to the bulletproof vest.
Last night, a homicide took place near City Park. Thus far, however, the Denver Police Department has released the absolute bare minimum of information about it. So little, in fact, that everything fit within the 140 characters of a single tweet. Here's what we know so far.
At 7:43 p.m. last night, the DPD tweeted the following:
BREAKING: Homicide invest. in the 2800 BLK of Adam St one male victim pronounced dead at scene. A male suspect in custody. Invest continues.
— Denver Police Dept (@DenverPolice) October 16, 2013
Given the timing of the message, 9News was able to get a crew to the scene in time for the evening newscast, as witnessed by the screen captures seen here -- and a CBS4 Twitter exchange with the DPD included a note about a public-information officer heading to the scene.
Thus far, however, no more public information has been shared. All we know is that a man died near 28th and Adams and another man is in police custody. Here's hoping more details will follow.
In the meantime, our condolences to the friends, family and loved ones of the victim.
Look below to see an interactive graphic of the area near the scene. If you have problems seeing the image, click "View Larger Map."
View Larger Map
More from our Mile High Murder archive: "Photos: Multiple gunshots kill man found in Aurora apartment courtyard (18)."
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