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Police Release Identity Of Suspect Arrested In Aurora Officer Shooting

AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – Police on Wednesday morning released the identity of a suspect who they say shot an Aurora police officer and was arrested Tuesday evening.

Police arrested Jahvell Daquan Forrest, 20, in connection with the shooting of Officer Ryan Burns, who was shot in the leg and had to be hospitalized.

The arrest came hours after the reward in the case was increased to $35,000.

"Let me term it like this – we are absolutely certain we have the gunman," Aurora Interim Police Chief Terry Jones said.

The shooting occurred when two officers pulled over the suspect's car for a traffic stop shortly after 9 p.m. on Friday at 17th Avenue and Fulton Street. The suspect immediately fired at the officers, hitting Burns. The other officer returned fire, but it's unclear whether the suspect was struck.

The suspect drove two blocks north and abandoned the car, a white 2002 Volkswagen Passat. The car was stolen from a man who left it unattended a few blocks away.

Officers from three jurisdictions set up a wide perimeter Friday night and used K-9 units and a helicopter to search for the suspect but didn't find him. Police also said they didn't have even a basic description of a suspect. Police credit going door-to-door talking to residents and evidence found in the area for leading to the arrest.

"On Sunday, with an overall saturation again of the area, we did door-to-door contact with the residents of northwest Aurora," Jones said. "Slowly but surely pieces began to come together."

Officers aren't explaining exactly where they arrested Forrest but they used some sort of surveillance. Some officers told CBS4's Suzanne McCarroll that Forrest was actually arrested with another person as they were in the middle of committing another crime.

"There's a certain class of criminal out there that if you go up against the police, that's significant. That means the rest of the community is not safe either," Jones said. "So it was our main focus to put every effort we could, including the assistance of other agencies."

Jahvell Daquan Forrest (credit: Aurora Police Department)
Jahvell Daquan Forrest (credit: Aurora Police Department)

On Tuesday, the department announced the reward for information leading to a suspect was raised to $35,000. It's not clear if the reward led to police getting information about Forrest.

"This one has got its own unique set of twists and turns," Jones said.

Police say Forrest is very well known to Aurora police. His criminal record includes a long list of misdemeanors. He's now being held on a $1 million bond.

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