Man killed by Colorado police was an unarmed parolee, officials say

Man fatally shot by police in Aurora, Colo., was unarmed parolee who'd cut off ankle monitor, officials say

A 37-year-old man who was shot and killed by Colorado police last week was not armed, officials said during a news conference Monday.

Naeschylus Vinzant died of a gunshot wound to the chest after a clash with police in Aurora, according to a statement by the Arapahoe County coroner's office.

Vinzant, who had absconded from parole March 2 and removed his ankle monitor, was also wanted in connection with an "assault, robbery, kidnapping and domestic violence incident" that took place the same day, according to Aurora Police Cmdr. Paul O'Keefe.

The city's SWAT team was called in because of Vinzant's "violent history," he said. It was not clear what led to the shooting.

Newly appointed Aurora Police Chief Nicholas Metz said the shooting was a "very tragic situation for everyone involved." He said the officer who killed Vinzant is on leave. He declined to identify the officer. 

After Vinzant cut off his ankle bracelet, the Colorado Department of Corrections asked the Aurora police for help monitoring him, O'Keefe said.

Neither Metz nor O'Keefe would say whether Vinzant was given a chance to surrender or describe the circumstances that led the officer to fire.

Adrienne Jacobs, a spokeswoman for the Colorado Department of Corrections, would not discuss the terms of Vinzant's parole or the circumstances that led Aurora police to be seeking him in the March 2 kidnapping and assault.

Police did not discuss the details of why Vinzant was being pursued. Vinzant, who was last released from prison Feb. 28, has been arrested several times in the last 20 years. 

Court records show that Vinzant had previously faced charges of assault, menacing, eluding police and illegal weapons procession. 

Vinzant was killed the same day a Madison, Wis., police officer shot and killed 19-year-old Tony Robinson, whose death led to large-scale protests at the Wisconsin Capitol on Monday. 

Robinson was not armed, but police have said he'd assaulted the officer who shot him.

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