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Indictments unsealed in Clear Creek sheriff's deputies' alleged killing of Christian Glass

Indictments unsealed in killing of Christian Glass
Indictments unsealed in killing of Christian Glass 02:23

Days after two Clear Creek County sheriff's deputies were indicted and fired for their alleged role in shooting and killing Christian Glass, the indictments have been unsealed, offering new information on the shooting itself.

Last week, Deputy Andrew Buen, 29, was charged with second-degree murder, official misconduct and reckless endangerment and Sgt. Kyle Gould, 36, was charged with criminally negligent homicide and reckless endangerment, according to court documents. They were both fired when the indictments came down.

On Monday, CBS News Colorado received those indictments, which offer new information as to what happened that night.

Bodycam video from the night of June 10 and the morning of June 11 in Silver Plume shows several deputies open fire on 22-year-old Glass, whose car had broken down. Glass, was born in New Zealand to a New Zealander dad and British mom. He was reportedly experiencing a mental health crisis and was scared of the deputies that responded.

Christian Glass Glass family

It started on the night of June 10 when he was driving and made a U-turn, getting one of his car's wheels stuck between two boulders, according to court documents. 

Glass told a 911 dispatcher and responding deputies that he had a hammer and a knife, among other tools, since he was an amateur geologist. He offered to throw the hammer and knives out of his car to make the deputies feel safer, but Buen, one of the first deputies on the scene, told Glass not to, according to his 10-page indictment.

Law enforcement officers from the Georgetown Police Department, Idaho Springs Police Department, Colorado State Patrol and Colorado Gaming Commission also responded as backup.

"Buen's interactions with Mr. Glass fluctuated between conversational in tone to being verbally aggressive towards Mr. Glass," the indictment says.

Clear Creek Deputy Timothy Collins tried to step in and talk to Glass when he noticed Buen becoming "verbally aggressive," according to the indictment, but Buen apparently did not pick up on Collins' cues.

Both deputies spoke to their shift supervisor, Gould - a Clear Creek Sheriff's Office sergeant - using Buen's cell phone. During those conversations, Buen muted his body-worn camera, according to the indictment.

Buen told Georgetown Police Chief Randall Williams that the decision was made to remove Glass from his car, despite the fact that, according to the indictment, "no one on the scene had made a determination that there was probable cause or reasonable suspicion that a crime had been committed or was being committed."

In edited recordings released by Rathod's law firm, a Colorado State Patrol supervisor is heard telling the CSP officer on the scene, "If there's no crime and he's not suicidal or homicidal, or a great danger, then there's no reason to contact him."  

Officers on the scene then "escalated" the encounter in their efforts to get Glass out of the car, according to the indictment and corroborated by body-worn camera footage. Collins jumped on the hood of Glass's car while Williams tried to "coax" Glass out.

About an hour passed between the time deputies first arrived and the time law enforcement attempted to remove Glass from his car. During those conversations, Glass tries pleading with the deputies and officers, saying he's not a threat to them and that he's just scared and needs help. At one point, he makes a heart with his hands.

Bodycam footage shows Christian Glass, 22, before a deputy or deputies shot and killed him in Silver Plume on June 10, 2022. Clear Creek Sheriff's Office

Buen then broke out the front passenger side window of Glass's car with a baton as Williams unsuccessfully tried to the same on the rear driver's side window. Buen then shot Glass with six bean-bag rounds, one of which broke the rear driver's side window.

Buen and Williams then both tased Glass, causing him to scream in pain and then swing his knife in panic and self defense, the indictment says. Williams tried to open the rear driver's door and as Glass continued swinging the knife, Buen shot Glass five times with his pistol.

He was then removed from the car and pronounced dead at the scene.

"Chief Williams at no point was in imminent danger of being stabbed by Mr. Glass and Mr. Glass never attempted to exit the vehicle," the indictment reads.

It goes on to say that Gould, the sergeant that allegedly ordered his deputies to remove Glass from his car, should not have made that order since, "there is no reason to believe that Mr. Glass would have been a danger to any law enforcement personnel, to himself, or to any member of the public."

Former Clear Creek sheriff's deputy, left, and former Sgt. Kyle Gould have been indicted for their alleged roles in the fatal shooting of 22-year-old Christian Glass in Silver Plume earlier this year. Gilpin County Sheriff's Office

"The decision to remove him from the vehicle directly lead to the death of Mr. Glass," reads the indictment, which was then signed by Fifth Judicial District Attorney Heidi McCollum.

After the criminal case against the deputies concludes, Siddhartha Rathod, an attorney for Glass's family, says his firm is preparing a civil rights lawsuit against all five agencies that had officers or deputies present.

"When you force escalation with someone with disabilities it doesn't end well," Ali Thompson, of Pulse Line Collaborative Training, previously told CBS News Colorado.

Glass's parents also previously released a statement through their attorney: "Nothing will bring Christian back to his family. Simon and Sally Glass are relieved appropriate charges have been brought against some of those responsible for the murder of their son. However, justice for Christian will require all those involved being held accountable. Christian's death is a stain on every officer who was present and failed to prevent the escalation and unnecessary uses of force."

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