Friends of Refugees

A U.S. Refugee Resettlement Program Watchdog Group

Denver police say group that killed South Sudanese refugee included gang members

Posted by Christopher Coen on May 18, 2012

Denver police say a group that killed Sudanese refugee Jimma Reat were out on a night of car theft and trouble-making, and included two unspecified juvenile gang members (it was the Latin Kings gang that attacked Sudanese refugees in 2002 in Chicago). The Denver 911 director has now fired a 911 operator for withholding medical assistance from one of the Sudanese callers, who repeatedly asked for medical aid, and wrongly telling him to return to the scene of the first incident, where Reet was then killed. An article in the Denver Post (and here) has updated information on the case:

Denver police believe a group that included two juvenile gang members out on a night of car theft and troublemaking killed Sudanese refugee Jimma Reat.

No arrests have been made in the case. Police are asking for the public’s help in locating witnesses or others involved in the shooting in the early hours of April 1.

Reat, 25, was shot in the back blocks from West 10th Avenue and Sheridan Boulevard in Denver, where he and other members of his family were taunted by a group of Latino men driving a stolen Jeep who threw bottles and waved a gun at their vehicle.

After the altercation, Reat and his family went to their apartment in Wheat Ridge. A 911 operator told them to return to Denver, where they were fired upon by the same group that had attacked them moments before.

Denver 911 director Carl Simpson on Tuesday fired the operator for mishandling the call.

“Witnesses say there were four or five parties in the vehicle,” Detective Randy Denison said of the suspects’ car. “What we are looking for is to identify the other possible occupants.”

The occupants of the Jeep didn’t flash gang signs or tout any gang affiliation, but the criminal history of the two teens now suspected suggests they are gang members, Denison said. He said he didn’t know whether one of them — or someone else in the Jeep — fired the fatal shot…

…Reat and his companions didn’t see the Jeep until it pulled up beside them at a light. “There was not much conversation. The brothers say these guys just pull up beside them, and they think they are just saying, ‘Hello,’ and Jimma and his friends just kind of wave. They just think these guys are just giving them the nod,” Denison said… Read more here

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