Man Pleads in Officer Involved Shooting
The following press release was distributed to media outlets by Colorado’s 5th District Judicial District Attorney Bruce Brown’s office on May 23, 2019.
Dylan Byrne Gregg, 33, of Leadville, pleaded guilty today to assault on a peace officer (F4), and admitted domestic violence played a role in the offense stemming from an Oct. 30, 2018, incident, where police responded to a domestic assault in progress. According to the plea agreement, the defendant faces a mandatory prison commitment to a term between six to twelve (6-12) years.
At 1 a.m. on October 30, 2018 Defendant Gregg was breaking things inside the house he shared with his wife and one-year-old child. During his rampage, his wife and one-year-old retreated into a separate room in the house and locked the door, to avoid being harmed by him, calling the police for help. Leadville Police Officer Thorne arrived and tried to calm the defendant, who continued to escalate the level of violence by throwing things through a bay window at Officer Thorne who was standing approximately twenty feet away in the front yard.
Officer Thorne resorted to using a non-lethal Taser against Defendant Gregg with little effect, but Gregg continued to pose a threat to the officer and Gregg’s wife and child, who remained inside the home. Then, Gregg charged at Officer Thorne from the house and cornered the retreating Officer Thorne against a wall dividing the home next door from Gregg’s, punching Officer Thorne in the head. Fearing for his life, Officer Thorne shot Defendant Gregg three times with his service weapon, finally bringing to an end Gregg’s aggression and out-of-control behavior. Throughout the ordeal the Defendant repeatedly ignored Officer Thorne’s directions to surrender.
It was later determined that Gregg had a blood alcohol content (0.145), nearly two times the State driving legal limit (0.08), as well as there being blood test evidence of recent cocaine and marijuana usage. Gregg has an extensive criminal history, some related to drug abuse, including a prison commitment in 2009.
“Our thanks go out to Officer Thorne and other law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line to keep us safe, often from those closest to us in episodes like this stemming from domestic violence,” said Bruce Brown, 5th Judicial District Attorney. “Lethality in our rural community continues to escalate and it is unfortunate that officers are forced into situations where they have to respond in kind. We will continue to work to take people who use violence against those sworn to protect us out of the community for lengthy periods,” he added.
Gregg is due to be sentenced on August 30, 2019, before Judge Catherine Cheroutes, Lake County District Court Judge, and remains released on bond pending sentencing. Recent prison sentences in the Fifth Judicial District for assault on police officers include:
- Nathan Finnegan, 22, on May 6, 2019 sentenced to 13 years, for assaulting a Breckenridge Police Officer, causing Serious Bodily Injury.
- James Morrow, 27, on January 28, 2019 sentenced to four years for assaulting a Dillon Police Officer and causing a career-ending injury.
- Ruben Martinez, 24, on February 11, 2019 was sentenced to 24 years for firing a gun at pursuing police officers on I-70 in Eagle County.
On average, 115 police and sheriff’s patrol officers suffered fatal work injuries each year from 2003 to 2014. Another 30,990 nonfatal injuries involving days away from work were reported for police and sheriff’s patrol officers on average each year from 2009 to 2014.