Suspect killed after exchange of gunfire with Douglas County deputies

Another suspect wounded and at hospital, a third in custody, after car chase


Following a traffic incident in which suspects fired at deputies the morning of Nov. 27, one suspect is dead, another is wounded and at a local hospital, and one is in custody, authorities from the Douglas County Sheriff's Office say.

Both the suspect who died and the one who is wounded were shot by deputies.

Authorities have identified the suspect in custody as Peirce Elliott Langewisch, 20. Langewisch had an outstanding warrant for failure to identify as a sex offender, Sheriff Tony Spurlock said, standing beside District Attorney George Brauchler during a media briefing the afternoon of Nov. 27.
Langewisch appeared in court Dec. 3. Among the 17 charges filed against him are attempted first-degree murder of a peace officer after deliberation, motor vehicle theft, illegal discharge of a firearm and possession of burglary tools. Fifteen of the charges are felonies. He is being held at the Douglas County jail without bond.

Douglas County Coroner's Office has identified the deceased suspect as 19-year-old Nicholas Ryan, of Aurora.

The injured suspect has been identified as 21-year-old Jason Bradley Sutton, of Golden. Sutton was released from the hospital the morning of Dec. 4 and transferred to the Douglas County jail. His bond is $100,000. Charges filed against him include first-degree aggravated motor vehicle theft, complicity, possession of burglary tools and tampering with physical evidence. All charges are felonies. 

The investigation is ongoing and authorities believe the suspects may have been involved in other crimes.

Deputies responded to a reckless driving incident about 3:30 a.m. near South Broadway, in the area of Highlands Ranch. The suspects had been traveling eastbound on C-470 in a Jeep Cherokee that deputies determined had stolen license plates, Spurlock said.

During the pursuit, the suspects fired at officers "a number of times," Spurlock said. Authorities are reviewing body camera footage and dash camera footage to determine at what point and how many shots were fired.

At high speeds, the suspects' car exited onto South Yosemite Street, drove through the Park Meadows outer-loop area onto Chester Street and continued east on East Dry Creek Road, according to Spurlock.

The suspects threw duffle bags out of the vehicle at four different locations, according to Spurlock. The items in the bags have not been identified.

The pursuit ended when deputies were involved in a car crash with the suspects near Dry Creek Road and Interstate 25 in Arapahoe County, about five miles from initial contact. Dash camera footage released at the media briefing show a deputy's vehicle maneuvering to block the suspects' car and a second deputy's vehicle crashing into the suspects' car at high speeds with full force.

"The supervisor on scene did give authorization for officers to do whatever necessary to stop that vehicle," Spurlock said.

Shots were again fired at deputies, Spurlock said. Officers returned fire and killed one suspect, Spurlock said. The unidentified suspect was injured in the initial crash and was shot, according to Spurlock. The wounded suspect is expected to survive.

Two deputies were involved in the initial pursuit and five deputies total were involved in the shooting at Dry Creek Road and I-25, Spurlock said. No deputies were injured. The officers involved in the shooting will be put on administrative leave with pay, Spurlock said.

“This is a traumatic event, obviously, for anyone,” Spurlock said. “It's always a serious event when you end up having to use force.”

Northbound and southbound exits to Dry Creek Road were closed for most of the day.

The Douglas County Sheriff's Office is handling the underlying crime that led to the use of lethal force by law enforcement, and Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office is investigating the use of lethal force, according to Brauchler. Authorities expect a significant bond for Langewisch and charges are expected be filed in the next couple of days, Brauchler said.


Our Papers

Ad blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an ad blocking plugin in your browser.

The revenue we receive from our advertisers helps make this site possible. We request you whitelist our site.