weapon associated with the January 2016 shooting of an off-duty Jefferson County sheriff's deputy is seen with a bullet lodged near the barrel. It was determined that one of the shots that Deputy Marquez fired from his .45 caliber handgun actually hit Meshesha’s .40 caliber handgun and traveled down the barrel. (Courtesy 18th Judicial District Attorney's Office)
The weapon associated with the January 2016 shooting of an off-duty Jefferson County sheriff’s deputy is seen with one of the shots that Deputy Marquez fired from his .45 caliber handgun that actually hit Meshesha’s .40 caliber handgun and traveled down the barrel. (Courtesy 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office)

 

On Wednesday, Arapahoe County prosecutors announced their determination that Deputy Jose Marquez acted appropriately when he exchanged gunfire with two attempted robbery suspects in Aurora, Colorado back in January.

On January 26, Marquez was visiting his girlfriend and had gone to the parking lot to get something out of his car. Two men with masks on their face approached him in the parking lot, one pulled a weapon and said “Give it up.”

Deputy Marquez, who was off duty and not in uniform, was shot in the shoulder and abdomen but managed to draw his own weapon and return fire at the suspects, ending the attack.

One of the suspects, Jhalil Meshesha, was wounded in the leg and later arrested, the other fled the scene and has not been identified.

“Deputy Marquez reasonably believed that his life was in danger and acted reasonably in shooting Meshesha, and that he used an appropriate level of physical force. I further find that Deputy Marquez’s actions were justified and he did not violate Colorado law,” the letter said.

In an amazing twist of fate, investigators discovered one of Marquez’s bullets inside the barrel of Meshesha’s pistol. Police say a bullet from Marquez’ .45 caliber handgun actually traveled down the barrel of Meshesha’s .40 caliber handgun and disabled it. Police are calling the shot “one in a billion.”