An El Paso County sheriff’s deputy is recovering after being shot Sunday in a gunbattle in which the suspect in an earlier, marijuana-related killing east of Colorado Springs was slain.
Deputy Jeremy Juhl, 36, a member of El Paso County SWAT, suffered a “slight” injury when he was struck by a pellet or shrapnel on his left side while exchanging fire with the suspect at a home in the 19000 block of Loop Road in eastern El Paso County, Sheriff Bill Elder said at a news conference at UCHealth Memorial Hospital Central.
Juhl was expected to be treated and released from the hospital Sunday.
SWAT encountered the suspect in the afternoon after receiving reports of an armed man in the area. Elder did not say how the gunman died.
The suspect, whose name has not been released, was believed to be involved in a fatal shooting about 8:30 a.m. off Colorado 94 near Corral Valley 6 miles east of Marksheffel Road, Elder said.
One man was killed and another was wounded in what appeared to be a robbery at an illegal marijuana grow, according to investigators.
The man drove himself to Memorial Hospital, where he is in critical condition with gunshot wounds. Neither of their names have been released.
Both locations were known to law enforcement as illegal marijuana grow sites, Elder said.
“This was part of a larger illegal drug trafficking organization we have been working for some time,” he said.
According to local and federal law enforcement agencies, there are hundreds of illegal marijuana grows in the region.
The last law enforcement officer in the Pikes Peak region to be shot was Feb. 5. El Paso County sheriff’s Deputy Micah Flick was killed, and two deputies and a Colorado Springs police officer were wounded during a shootout in the 4200 block of Galley Road that left the suspect dead and a bystander injured.
“This was part of a larger illegal drug trafficking organization we have been working for some time.” El Paso County Sheriff Bill Elder