Suicide incident closes Highway 50 for hours Tuesday
Several departments involved
by Mark Reaman
A 35-year-old out-of-state-man involved local law enforcement in an incident Tuesday afternoon that ended with him taking his own life near Blue Mesa Reservoir. The incident closed Highway 50 for more than three hours. The name of the subject and his residence is not being released.
Local law enforcement received a call Tuesday afternoon about 3 o’clock concerning a distressed man in Gunnison who had mentioned he might attempt “suicide by cop.”
Gunnison Police department officers responded to the call and located the man in a vehicle in Gunnison. Officers determined it was best for safety reasons not to stop the subject within city limits. Gunnison County sheriff’s deputies were called and they along with the police followed the vehicle out of town. The subject left the municipality and was stopped near Wilson’s Landing about 3:30 p.m. Wilson’s Landing is located about six miles west of the city near Blue Mesa Reservoir.
Officers attempted to negotiate with the driver to leave the vehicle. Contrary to rumors, Sheriff John Gallowich said there were no children and no hostages in the car. The man was alone in the vehicle. After receiving no response to orders to leave the vehicle, a drone from Montrose was used to look inside the vehicle. It was evident that the subject had taken his own life.
Highway 50 was closed to traffic until 6:27 p.m. Agencies involved in the incident included the Gunnison Police Department, the Gunnison County Sheriff’s Department, the National Park Service, Colorado State Patrol, Montrose Police Department, Montrose County Sheriff’s Department and the Colorado Department of Transportation.
The incident remains under investigation.