Aurora police arrest homicide suspect after chase involving Mayor Mike Coffman

Aurora police officers arrested a homicide suspect Saturday after a vehicle pursuit that involved Aurora Mayor Mike Coffman, who was riding along with a police commander when the pursuit took place.

The incident began around 3:40 p.m. near East Colfax Avenue and Havana Street when a police officer spotted a man suspected of homicide, Jesus Aguirre-Flores, 26, riding in a vehicle. The officer attempted to pull the vehicle over, but the driver, Khadija Evans, 24, drove away.

After an about 10-minute pursuit, which moved through northwest Denver and Aurora, one officer used his patrol vehicle to “forcibly end the pursuit,” according to a statement from Aurora police. Two officers suffered minor injuries and were taken to a hospital for treatment.

Coffman said in a statement on Twitter that he’d participated in the pursuit as part of a ride-along — in which citizens can tag along with police officers for a shift and see how the job is done. Coffman went out on the ride-along Saturday afternoon as part of an effort aimed at “getting to know” the city’s first responders, he said.

“Shortly after departing District 1 headquarters, we engaged in a high-speed pursuit of a murder suspect driving a stolen vehicle,” he said in the statement, and then declined to comment further.

A spokesman for Coffman’s office and Aurora police did not immediately return requests for comment Sunday, and the extent of the mayor’s involvement in the chase was not clear.

Aguirre-Flores was arrested on suspicion of committing first-degree murder, while Evans was arrested for eluding officers, according to Aurora police.

Aguirre-Flores is suspected in the Aug. 17 killing of 35-year-old Lance M. Gerry, at the Radiant Inn on East Colfax Avenue, according to police. Gerry was shot to death.

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