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Ryan Stone chase: Did authorities unnecessarily endanger the public during pursuit?

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Photos, video and more below.
Yesterday, we recapped the wild, hour-long chase that resulted in the arrest of Ryan Stone, who'd stolen a car with a four-year-old inside. Given that a number of cars were struck during the pursuit, and a state trooper was seriously injured, should authorities have backed off, especially after the child was safe? That's among the questions being asked in the wake of the incident, which wouldn't have happened had Stone been arrested as planned the week before. Photos, video, a document and details below.

Just past 6 a.m. yesterday, as we've reported, a red minivan was swiped at a gas station located at 1750 Main Street in Longmont.

The woman who owned the vehicle had left her son, subsequently identified as Allen Chavarria-Rodriquez, inside.

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Image courtesy of 7News.
The first break following the issuance of an Amber Alert came around 7:15 a.m., when the minivan in question was eyeballed heading south on I-25 in the Thornton area.

Police soon responded, resulting in a chase that continued through neighborhoods and on roadways such as Interstate 76 while news helicopters captured the action.

Then, at E-470 near 152nd, the wanted driver, ID'd as Stone, abandoned his red minivan in favor of a gold one that he managed to block and and then snatch when the latter's two occupants bailed out.

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Colorado State Patrol Trooper Bellamann Hee.
Fortunately, Stone didn't take young Allen with him. The boy was found moments later by members of the Commerce City Police Department.

He was shaken up but otherwise safe and unharmed.

Meanwhile, Stone left a trail of havoc in his wake, avoiding stop sticks left by law enforcers on at least two occasions, and actually striking a Colorado State Patrol trooper in the vicinity of E-470 and Chambers. The trooper, identified as Bellamann Hee, was originally listed in serious condition, but he's expected to survive and recover from his injuries.

Other cars were also hit by Stone, including a silver BMW, which he commandeered after yanking the female driver out of the passenger compartment and hurling her to the ground. But he ditched the Beemer around Peoria and Lincoln and continued on foot.

Bad idea: He was rounded up just after 8 a.m., bringing the chase to an end.

Afterward, the Douglas County Sheriff's Office issued statements about the incident, with Undersecretary Tony Spurlock attempting to short-circuit any suggestions that law enforcers took too many risks to reel Stone in.

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Undersheriff Tony Spurlock.
"We had to apprehend this guy. He was not going to stop committing crimes," Spurlock said. "We were in constant communication with all law enforcement agencies involved. All of them helped hold traffic, blocked intersections and we did everything we could do to make sure no citizens were in harm's way, although they were, because quite frankly, he rammed them."

Added Sheriff David A. Weaver, "There are a lot of people who lived through this horrific event and our hearts and prayers go out to all of them. Thank goodness everyone is okay and the boy is okay, with the exception of the State Trooper, who is in serious condition...our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family."

Meanwhile, 7News obtained documents showing that Stone was targeted with arrest last week but split from a courtroom before he could formally be taken into custody.

As for why he'd been earmarked by authorities in the first place, an arrest warrant accompanying a motion to revoke his bond also obtained by the station offers reasons aplenty.

The warrant documents law enforcement contact on February 12 after Stone was pulled over while driving a truck whose license was not on file.

A highly agitated Stone claimed the truck had been purchased by his girlfriend, ID'd as Natasha McMurry, even though the ignition was broken, and it could only be started using a screwdriver. And he also disavowed ownership of drugs found in the truck.

Among the information provided by Stone as Arapahoe County deputies arranged for the truck to be towed:

• "He had just gotten out of prison after four years for Methamphetamine."

• "He had just gotten another drug-related charge three days ago in Arapahoe County, where Meth was found inside the vehicle by a drug K9."

• "He had owned the truck for five days, and this was the third time it was being towed."

• "He was completely innocent of any drugs that had been located in the truck."

Innocence will be a lot tougher to assert this time around. Here's the aforementioned 7News story, followed by the motion and probable cause affidavit.

Ryan Stone Motion to Revoke Bond

Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.

More from our Colorado Crimes archive circa March 12: "Video: Ryan Stone busted after wild car chase with kidnapped four-year-old."


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59 comments
Dominic Fante
Dominic Fante

The article did not list ONE thing the police did dangerously... they blocked traffic, backed off on him until he stole a different car, and laid down spike strips to stop his ass. How could you endanger people any less than that?

Bob Digi
Bob Digi

They should have pursued from the get go.I mean who lets someone play gta5 for real.with real lives at stake.the faster they could have stopped it the less lives it would have affected. Congratulations state troopers and denver law enforcement. ..you just fucked up.yeah you caught him but you took an hour.what a joke

Charlene McCune
Charlene McCune

There was this same discussion over the necessity of chasing stolen cars and endangering the public... years ago... it is not a new topic...

Matt Corry
Matt Corry

He was ripping people out of there cars, he needed to be stopped as soon as possible. I have as much dislike for cops as anyone else, but they did this one right!

Renee Lov
Renee Lov

because thats how it works on FB. at Doug H.

Stan Salazar
Stan Salazar

Yes. They should have taken him out sooner. They also had they chopper so they could have fallen back to give the suspect the appearance of getting away while strategically planning how to take him out without harming innocents. The suspect is also a moron because once he knew the chopper had eyes on him, he should have headed for the nearest parking garage for the old bait and switch move. Everyone failed in this pursuit.

Clint Jahn
Clint Jahn

In that particular case, they were justified in using a 20mm rifle from the helicopter.

Steve Reynolds
Steve Reynolds

Westword asks: Should we leave criminals be because they're so dang dangerous?.

nowitall
nowitall

Westword asks: Should we leave criminals be because they're so dang dangerous?

Larry Girard
Larry Girard

Stir up controversy. Just another way to sell papers. Actually, if he had tried to pull me out of my car like he did that last woman, I'd shoot him.

Scott Raile
Scott Raile

You must be joking. That guy did a ton of damage in a very short period of time; he needed to be stopped, and as quickly as possible.

tony514
tony514

PARKER IS BECOMING THE NEW COMPTON OF THE METRO AREA.

Sean Milano
Sean Milano

No, no. The point of journalism is to get you to click on things, get all mad for no reason, then leave a comment.

Randy Schuelke
Randy Schuelke

How about blaming the person who committed the crime, not rocket science.

Erin Maguire Pettitt
Erin Maguire Pettitt

Ugh. Westword. The only reason I still have you in my feed is because watching you crash and burn is oddly fascinating.

Teresa Youngblood Helms
Teresa Youngblood Helms

WTF, they did back off! They pursued him from a distance. I guess they could have just let him on his merry little way and let him jack more cars to get to where ever he wanted to go! SMDH

Doug Hubka
Doug Hubka

So why does Westword think we need to make a controversy over the way the Police handled this. I am pretty sure there is no one at Westword, including MS Calhoun that could have done a better job.

LindaLee Law
LindaLee Law

Not at all. He assaulted other drivers, etc. He fled because he didn't want to do the time... ass!

Max McMurray
Max McMurray

You can't just throw your hands up in the air and go "darn.. he is too crazy for us to handle. Lets go home" Just follow him in a helicopter untill he gets to the point where he crashes or flees into a home. Then send swat aftern his ass. Also technically the kid was help hostage and they needed to stop it asap so the kid dose not get harmed. If it was just a straight up high speed pursuit then spin him around where there are no other cars and hope for the best

Pete Copeland
Pete Copeland

This is the kind of stuff drones would be cool for. Have the police back off so that he thinks he's gotten away, and then set a trap. I remember seeing a high speed chase on Brighton blvd with a large white truck flying at 150 or so with its engine on fire. There were about 20 police officer vehicles in pursuit. I am not really sure why you would need that many, seems dangerous.

Rob Jennings
Rob Jennings

Sounds like Colorado is turning into a shithole. Congrats!

Jeff Dougan
Jeff Dougan

They should follow department protocol.

Brandon Carrillo
Brandon Carrillo

They did a good job, but they should have been more aggressive once they knew the 4 year old was safe. But then again they weren't at home watching everything live play by play via news and a helicopter, so for us to assume they knew the severity of the situation live like we did is not true. They caught the aftermath. Overall great job on what they had to work with.

Val Weitz
Val Weitz

Yeah..The police state is already out of control. Let's not give them the right to indiscriminately murder people. The police did what they are paid to do, thanks for doing your job.

Maria Ortiz Avina
Maria Ortiz Avina

But awesome work in apprehending this criminal.. Thank u thank u

Maria Ortiz Avina
Maria Ortiz Avina

I'm not in law enforcement .. But speaking as a lay person, I hope they study these chase videos to see if they could have stopped him a lot earlier.

Moses Hermosillo
Moses Hermosillo

They needed to catch him! Clearly sounds like he was on drugs, a habitual criminal that needs to be off the streets!

Cooper Watts
Cooper Watts

We have police helicopters right? Then why do we need to endanger the public during unnecessary ground chases? It's like the news companies lobby for it because that is the only time people are glued to the morning news. Just watch an action movie from the 80s instead people.

Doug Sunada
Doug Sunada

Ckngrads to all involved dor defusing a crazy situation,they all backed iff n put ghe safety first then processed with caution,

Eric Karika
Eric Karika

They did back off, if you watch the video 9news has up (the whole chase or just the "important" parts) they backed off for a majority of the "chase" only maintaining visual contact on his vehicles instead of actively trying pits or other maneuvers to stop him. Chases always eventually end, the cops know that, and they have news helicopters and their own helicopters to track him for hours and hours without him even knowing.

James Richardson
James Richardson

No they should have been more aggressive actually, did you see all those chances in Adams County especially to nail him, one way parking lots and such before he further endangered the lives of so many with his crazy driving over some 70 miles.

Peter William Goodwin
Peter William Goodwin

You're right, they would have reported the opposite in that circumstance. That's the point of news and journalism.

Shauna Stenzel
Shauna Stenzel

I have mixed feelings on high speed chases. My mom was T-boned by a cop car that was involved in one years ago. The Denver cops didn't do jack shit for her and she only had liability insurance so she was stuck without a car and no way or money to get one! SO I think if it is going to endanger innocent bystanders then it IS NOT worth it!

Marc Bayes
Marc Bayes

They're like Denver's TMZ with shittier news and no celebrities.

Bryan Clark
Bryan Clark

looks like it worked out ok, we could speculate for years

Ashleigh Weatherill
Ashleigh Weatherill

You people who consider Westword an actual source of news, crack me up. They're basically a slightly classier tabloid and should stick to what they do best, fluffy entertainment news.

Suni Daze
Suni Daze

He should have been taken out as soon as he dropped that kid off !!!! Taking him out then would have prevented one of their own getting hurt and MANY CIVILIANS getting hurt and suffering damages. But they couldnt be bothered because ---------he was to dangerous -------So lets all just sit back and spectate while he continued to assault people .....jack cars ........ with a police escort more like !!!

George Darcy
George Darcy

What If people who innocently got involved by the car jacking and such ..had been trained and licensed concealed carry. ..would this ended quicker?

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

Strong post, Clint. Thanks for weighing in.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

Very futuristic, Pete. Thanks.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

Simply put. Thanks for posting, Heather.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

Interesting post, Maria. Thanks.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

Quite the story, Shauna. We're going to feature it in an upcoming Comment of the Day. Thanks.

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