Adams Co OIS decision; 10-14-21

No charges will be filed against two Commerce City police officers who fatally shot a man earlier this year, the 17th Judicial District Attorney announced Thursday. 

No charges will be filed against two Commerce City police officers who fatally shot a man earlier this year, the 17th Judicial District Attorney announced Thursday. 

In a decision letter issued on Thursday, the district attorney's office declined to bring charges against Officers Michael Pasko and Joshua Moody in relation to a June 28 incident. 

"The evidence presented in this investigation supports a conclusion that Officers Pasko and Moody were justified in their use of deadly physical force," the letter read.

The incident unfolded on the morning of June 28, when the victim's mother brought her son, Robert Alire, to North Suburban Hospital for a mental health emergency. Alire refused treatment at that time and they returned home.

To avoid potential conflict, Alire's mother left the home for two hours and upon their return found her home in "shambles," according to the decision letter.

Alire's mother called 911 and told dispatchers that her son was "all high on drugs and just destroyed my house." She also told dispatchers that her son ingested and unknown type and quantity of drugs.

The officers responded to a report of a "family disturbance" at the home in the 7300 block of Brighton Boulevard around noon. Both officers arrived at the same time in separate vehicles, and quickly realized the home was out of their jurisdiction. 

Pasko notified dispatch that the house was under the Adams County Sheriff's Office's jurisdiction, but stated they would standby until deputies arrived to ensure "no one got hurt," according to the decision.

At this time, Moody began speaking with the victim's mother, who told them her son was "all high on drugs" "needs help" and that he thought police and federal authorities were after him, according to the decision.

Alire then entered the walkway of the home and motioned to Pasko's to come closer. As the officer approached he's heard on body camera footage stating, "Listen man, we cannot get too involved, we just want to make sure everybody is safe."

Then, Alire drew a butcher knife from his waistband and charged at the officer. 

Body camera footage shows Pasko back pedaling and yelling, "No! No! No!" He then commands the Alire to drop his knife, but as he approached fired multiple shots. 

Pasko told investigators he fired because he feared for his life.

"I was in fear for my life," he told investigators. "I felt that ... my life was in danger."

Moody who also fired four rounds at Alire said he fired because he feared Pasko was in danger.

"I drew my weapon thinking he was pulling a gun," Moody told investigators. "I saw that he pulled a long knife out and instantly started sprinting towards Pasko. I don't know who fired first. It was pretty simultaneously, but I made the decision to fire. If not, he was gonna kill [Pasko]."

Both officers fired a total of eight times, four each, and struck Alire five times in the torso and head. A toxicology exam showed Alire had ingested meth prior to the shooting, according to the report. 

"There is no evidence to suggest that an objectively reasonable officer would have acted differently than the officers who were involved in this incident," the report read. "While this situation escalated within a matter of seconds, it was not the result of the officers' behavior or conduct."