Photos: Nathan Beechley, busted in hit-and-run that killed Jonathan Lewis, is ex-DPS staffer

Categories: Colorado Crimes

nathan beechley mug shot 205x205.jpg
Photos, videos below.
Denver has suffered a rash of horrific hit-and-runs during the last three weeks or so, including the still-unsolved 14th and Yosemite crash that killed two children and a 13th and Kalamath incident in which Latoya Nelson has been charged with causing the death of Charlie Herrera, 85. The latest? A fatal smash-up near 9th and Colorado that took Jonathan Lewis's life. Ex-Denver Public Schools staffer Nathan Beechley has been accused of the crime, which contrasts sharply with the portrait presented on his Facebook page.

Unlike Erin Jackson, cuffed for a February hitt-and-run near East High, Beechley isn't a teacher. Instead, as 7News reports, he worked as a DPS security guard from May 2007 to May 2012.

Beechley's Facebook page isn't especially active, but it does feature several absolutely gorgeous photos of him with his young son. Here's one (cropped) example, complete with a Shakespeare quote....

nathan beechley 1.jpg
Also spotlighted is another bucolic pic....

nathan beechley 2.jpg
...plus an image that testifies to Beechley's faith:

nathan beechley 3.jpg
Nonetheless, 7News notes, Beechley has had a couple of police encounters in his day, with past charges of driving under the influence and driving without a valid license on his record.

nathan beechley hit and run screen capture.jpg
After the crash.
Cut to 2 a.m. or so yesterday morning, when Lewis, 35, left a bar and walked across Colorado in the vicinity of 9th, presumably on his way home. But even though he only lived about two blocks away, he never made it to his door. He was struck by a car that kept going after impact. The Denver coroner's office reveals that emergency personnel pronounced Lewis dead at the scene.

The driver of the vehicle left some clues behind, including metallic-blue paint chips and a piece of bumper, which the DPD publicized via a video on view below. Here's a screen capture from it:

nathan beechley hit and run screen capture debris.jpg
These items were helpful, but at a press conference yesterday, DPD reps stressed that tips offered up by the public were of even more assistance, leading investigators to an Aurora apartment complex -- and a 2004 Chevrolet Malibu with telltale front-end damage.

A short time later, Beechley was arrested on suspicion of causing Lewis's death. He's due to make his first court appearance this morning.

Look below to see a larger version of Beechley's booking photo, followed by two clips -- the aforementioned DPD footage from the scene and the 7News report.

nathan beechley mug shot.jpg
Nathan Beechley.

More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "Video: See SUV that killed kids Za May Khan, Az Zet Khan in 14th and Yosemite hit-and-run."

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16 comments
stefaniesmetana
stefaniesmetana

People need to remember he is simply being accused of this crime as of now while they are posting these comments!! Nathan was a great guy and and nobody knows what happened that night not even police!!! They are going off circumstantial evidence at this point trying to build their case. Some of these comments should be saved until he is actually convicted. His family is going through enough right now...so be respectful!!!! And why does denver have so many hit and runs?!?! Because so many people jay walk, which is a crime in and of itself!!!!!! Don't forget...even the victim may have been breaking the law! !

maxinepotter81
maxinepotter81

I just recently ( couple days ago) worked with Nathan, he worked at my job. It's very scary to see this on the news. My prayers go out to the victim and his family, but also to Nathans little boy. He was a very caring dad, who made a horrible decision. Nothing excuses what he did, but I feel so bad for his son.

MamaElie
MamaElie

Reminder to self! Being sober is an absolute gift. I am so fortunte to have found sobriety at 22.

First let me say, by no means do I wish to minimize the tragic loss of life or the grief Mr. Lewis's family and friends are enduring. I am speaking from my own experience about alcoholism.

I am not excusing a hit and run. I am saying But for the Grace of God, there go I. Alcoholism is a fatal illness which unfortunately does not always kill the one afflicted. It does not matter if you are rich, poor, moral, unmoral, religious, black, white, etc., once in the grips of this progressive disease, the power of "choice" in drink is removed. From what I have read, this man does not sound like an evil, bad man. He sounds like a drunk. This is a VERY sad story ALL THE WAY AROUND. Tragic for the victim and his family, tragic for alleged drunk driver, tragic for his family. To be 35 and have your "bottom" be this? Well, I get that this could have been me... or any number of my recovering friends whom found a solution in complete surrender. I remember "coming to" from a blackout, and I thank my lucky stars it was not with the reality this man "came to" with. If you are struggling with getting sober, please pick up the phone, or give me a call and we can hit a meeting instead. Praying for all those involved.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

If the victim is already dead, what good does remaining at the scene do, other than to incriminate the driver?


Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

If you hit & take off after running over Jesus, are you automatically going to hell ?

What if you repent as ALL the child molesting priests have done ?

He'd most likely stick you in the 'Heaven's Projects',  along w/ ALL the minorities who NEVER tried crack, OR played professional ball ......

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

To hear he may have been able to save the man's life !

Additionally I have read MANY cars passed W/O stopping !!! Drunk or not, DUMP the guy off at the Emergency Entrance of a hospital like we see in all the cartoons .

WTF ???  There's a MONSTER hospital w/i spitting distance !

hamachimaki
hamachimaki

Aside from the family of the victim, my heart breaks for that little boy. It's not his fault his dad turned out to be a complete f_cktard. 

Stacey Rogers
Stacey Rogers

Right! Even sadder than all the other ones. (sarcasm) At least with one of the other recent ones, the driver turned herself in (even though arrest was imminent). This guy had to be found at home.

Heather Malone
Heather Malone

How could anyone leave another human dying in the street? Especially if they were at fault. Jeez.

guest
guest

I feel that the laws regarding hit and runs should be changed.

If you're caught, a mandatory minimum 5 year prison sentence should be the norm.

Then maybe these selfish pricks will get the message that their immoral behavior is not acceptable.

Tracy Daigle Tabone
Tracy Daigle Tabone

What the hell is it with these hit and runs lately? What is it with the hits period??

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Heather Malone ... how can remaining at the scene bring the dead back to life?


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