Colo. Officer, Suspect Killed During Standoff

LIMON, Colo. --

A Limon police officer was shot to death Wednesday evening and two officers in a mobile home were freed in a dramatic end to an hours-long standoff with a wanted fugitive.

The standoff ended just after 10:40 p.m. when SWAT officers swarmed in to the mobile home to free the two officers, who were initially thought to be hostages.

It turns out the gunman had barricaded himself in one room of the mobile home, and the officers had just ended up in a separate part of the mobile home and remained there for their own safety during the chaotic first minutes of the standoff, according to the Colorado State Patrol.

The gunman was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, Limon police said.

The incident began at 6:10 p.m. at the Wagon Wheel Mobile Home Park on the west end of Limon, according to Trooper Heather Cobler of the Colorado State Patrol.

Limon police officers and Lincoln County deputies went to the mobile home park at the request of the U.S. Marshals Service to serve a fugitive warrant, police said. When the officers approached the door, the wanted man opened fire, killing one of the officers and causing the other two officers to run for cover inside a separate part of the home, police said.

About 20 people from the mobile home park, along Sixth Street on the west end of town, were ordered to leave their homes as the dramatic situation played out.

More than four hours later, a SWAT team broke into the mobile home and freed the two officers. An entire wall of the mobile home was ripped away as the SWAT team swarmed into the structure.

The gunman was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, police said. The gunman has not been identified.

Police identified the officer who was killed as Jay Sheridan, 27. He had worked as a police officer in Limon for 6 1/2 years. His wife had recently given birth to their first child, residents told 7NEWS.

"Jay was an outstanding officer and will be greatly missed by his fellow officers and colleagues," said Limon Police Chief Lynn Yowell.

Sheridan was one of only five officers in the Limon Police Department.

The home where Sheridan lived with his wife and new baby was surrounded by law enforcement officers and officer's wives who were giving his widow emotional support.

At least 10 surrounding law enforcement agencies were called in to help Limon police with the standoff.

Video from Airtracker7 showed a SWAT team deployed in the park and large number of law enforcement vehicles stationed around the trailer park.

Agencies called to the scene to assist included Elbert County Sheriff's Office, Douglas County Sheriff's Office, Colorado State Patrol, Colorado Department of Corrections, Morgan County Sheriff's Office, Parker Police Department, Aurora Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

News and rumors traveled quickly through the town by text messages as the shooting and officer trapped situation developed, with officers and deputies reassuring their wives they were OK. Those messages were then relayed on to family and friends. Some of the messages said the officers were being held hostage.

The entire incident will be investigated by the 18th Judicial District Critical Response Team, according to police.

Limon is a town of about 2,000 and is 90 miles southeast of Denver, along Interstate 70.