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Cortez Police Sgt. Michael Moran remembered after deadly shootout in southwest Colorado

Cortez Police Sgt. Michael Moran remembered after deadly shootout in southwest Colorado
Cortez Police Sgt. Michael Moran remembered after deadly shootout in southwest Colorado 00:45

Investigators are revealing more information about the deadly shootout that took the life of Cortez Police Sgt. Michael Moran. Moran was shot by a suspect during a traffic stop in Cortez on Wednesday and he succumbed to his injuries at the hospital. 

A Cortez police officer died after exchanging gunfire with suspects on Wednesday.  Jerry McBride/The Journal Cortez

The Montezuma Sheriff's Office, Cortez Police Department and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation are investigating what led up to the shooting that left Moran and one suspect dead. 

Police said it all began before noon Wednesday when Moran conducted a traffic stop South Broadway that was initiated by a reckless driving complaint received by Cortez police. The suspect fired on Moran and then sped away. Moran was rushed to Southwest Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. 

  Cortez Police Sgt. Michael Moran Cortez Police Department

Moran was from Beaver County in Western Pennsylvania. He served with the Marines in active duty for 9 years, including two tours in Iraq before joining the Cortez Police Department in 2012. 

Deputies with the Montezuma Sheriff's Office and Cortez police officers located the suspect and suspect vehicle in the 7500 block of Highway 160-491. That's where additional shots were exchanged between the suspect and officers at the second location. The suspect was shot and killed. 

A police officer in Cortez died after exchanging gunfire with suspects during a traffic stop. Jerry McBride/The Journal Cortez

"This happened very fast. It was just a matter of minutes that the perpetrator involved in the shooting of Sgt Moran was located and engaged in a second shooting with a deputy from the Montezuma County Sheriff's Office and an officer from the Cortez Police Department. We do not have any suspects to look for. The community is safe," said Montezuma County Sheriff Steve Nowlin.

According to the sheriff's office, two people were inside the vehicle but only one person was involved in the shooting. 

The 6th and 22nd Judicial District Attorney's Offices are investigating the officer-involved shooting. 

Flags in the area have been lowered to half-staff in support of the Cortez Police Department.   

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