LONGMONT, Colo. (CBS4) – Longmont police say a United States Postal Service mail carrier was shot and killed Wednesday in a neighborhood near Heatherhill Street and Renaissance Drive. Police responded to the scene, located in the southwestern part of the city, at around 12:30 p.m.
Police say the USPS employee was shot in front of some mailboxes. Investigators say a male suspect was seen running away. That suspect was reportedly last wearing dark clothing, a hooded sweatshirt and a blue mask.
Officers used a police canine to look for the suspect, but they were not successful.
Jeff Satur, Deputy Chief of Police Services with Longmont police, says the suspect approached the employee and shot them multiple times. The employee died at the scene.
Police say they are searching the area and conducting neighborhood canvasses. Police issued a reverse 911 to residents and say they have not caught the suspect. Satur says police think the suspect is no longer in the area.
Police anticipated being in the area for multiple hours as part of their investigation.
David Rupert, communications manager of USPS in Colorado, says the shooting has impacted the federal agency deeply.
“You see us in your neighborhoods. We see your children grow up,” said Rupert. “We become part of your family, too.”
Grief counselors are now helping other employees. Rupert says this is an isolated incident, but had few other details about the situation.
Michael Dougherty, Boulder County’s District Attorney, urged the public to talk to police if they know something about the crime or know where the suspect is.
Five schools in the area were put on “secure status” due to the police activity. However, schools were not put on lockdown.
The schools included: Altona Middle School, Blue Mountain Elementary School, Eagle Crest Elementary School, Silver Creek High School, and Westview Middle School.
Secure status means students stayed inside the school building and exterior doors and windows were locked and secured. Classroom activities were not interrupted.
Secure status was lifted as of 2:45 p.m.
“This is very unusual for our community,” Satur said.
Those who saw what happened, have surveillance video or know more about the crime are asked to call Longmont Police Services at 303-651-8501.