Colorado’s Douglas County Sheriff’s Office has identified the suspect who opened fire on their deputies as they responded to an early morning call at the Copper Canyon apartments in Highland Ranch yesterday, shooting four deputies and killing one.
The murdered deputy has been identified as 29-year-old Zackari Parrish. He was rushed to Littleton Adventist Hospital but sustained injuries that Sheriff Tony Spurlock said he had “no ability to survive.”
Two civilians were also shot and wounded in the “ambush”-style attack that took place around 5:15 a.m. local time. Sheriff Spurlock added that the suspect “knew” deputies were coming and fired over 100 rounds before he was killed by SWAT team members.
The suspect has been identified as Matthew Riehl, 37, an Iraq War veteran and a critic of Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock on his YouTube channel. Riehl called Spurlock a “clown” in video acquired by FOX31 and threatened to run against him.
He also claimed to have been harassed by law enforcement and recorded video of a traffic stop he said was “illegal” as recently as November, according to Fox News. In that video, Riehl called the officer who performed the stop a “dirtbag” and a “liar” in addition to a “Nazi in charge with the stripes on his shoulder and the fake badge.”
Riehl was honorably discharged from the Wyoming Army National Guard in 2012. He is a 2010 graduate of the University of Wyoming College of Law.
It’s also been revealed that Douglas County deputies came to Riehl’s apartment before the 5:15 a.m. call that would end in gunfire. Hours earlier — around 1:30 a.m. local time — sheriff’s deputies were at the same apartment for a noise complaint.
When Douglas County deputies arrived, they were told that Riehl was “acting bizarre and might be having a mental breakdown.” However, they determined no crime had been committed, and they left, only to return hours later.