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Suspect who admitted to shooting, killing Colorado K9 officer sentenced

Fallen Jefferson County K9 Officer Graffit remembered after he was shot, killed in line of duty
Fallen Jefferson County K9 Officer Graffit remembered after he was shot, killed in line of duty 01:39

The man accused of shooting and killing Graffit, a Jefferson County Sheriff's Office K9, was sentenced to a maximum of 12 years on Friday. Eduardo Armando Romero pleaded guilty earlier this year for aggravated animal cruelty, identity theft, menacing, DUI and aggravated motor vehicle theft. 

Lakewood Police

The shooting happened on Feb. 13, 2023, at the Colorado School of Mines in Golden. Officers tried to talk to Armando Romero when they saw him slumped over the wheel of a car. When he awoke, he resisted arrest and fled, according to police officials. While running, he allegedly shot Graffit, a 10-year-old German Shepherd.

He later reportedly said he thought he was firing at the ground and said he didn't know he shot a dog.

  Eduardo Armando Romero GOLDEN POLICE

Graffit was not wearing his bulletproof vest at the time, according to the sheriff's office.

Senior Deputy District Attorney Amanda Becker, who specializes in prosecuting animal-related crimes, detailed how law enforcement canines are highly skilled partners capable of tasks beyond human abilities, "They have the senses that allow us to see what we cannot see—drugs, humans, weapons—law enforcement animals have helped keep our communities safe, and they are an asset."

The 12-year sentence will be served consecutively to the sentence Romero is already serving for similar crimes he committed in Denver. 

Graffit's training and experience cost Jefferson County taxpayers more than $107,000. In addition to the necropsy and damages to patrol vehicles, the People are requesting $158,455.15 in restitution. The hearing to address restitution is set for July 11 at 3 p.m.

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