Man fatally shot on a Denver bus after approaching teen, getting into argument, police say

Feb 15, 2024, 12:42 PM | Updated: 4:20 pm

DENVER (AP) — A 13-year-old accused of fatally shooting a man on a Denver bus opened fire in the middle of an argument after the man approached the teen and his friends at the back of the bus, according to court documents released Thursday.

Police had previously said that the Jan. 27 shooting happened after a “verbal exchange” between the teen and 60-year-old Richard Sanchez over Sanchez’s leg blocking the aisle.

According to surveillance video and witnesses, Sanchez first exchanged words with three juveniles after they got on the bus and they jumped over or stepped over his legs to get to the back of the bus, police said in the arrest affidavit for the 13-year-old. Shortly after the teen was seated on a raised seat at the back, Sanchez approached and got up on the platform, it said. In the middle of a “verbal altercation,” the teen reached into a sweatshirt, pulled out a handgun and fired seven times, it said.

The 13-year-old and the two other juveniles then got off the bus, stepping over Sanchez, who had collapsed near the bus’ back door, it said. One of the other juveniles was also apparently armed, pointing what appeared to be a handgun at Sanchez on the floor on the way out, the affidavit said.

An online fundraiser organized by Sanchez’s family says he was on his way home to his daughters and grandsons when he was shot.

The affidavit was released after prosecutors confirmed the teen had been charged with first-degree murder and other crimes in juvenile court.

The Denver District Attorney’s Office is still considering whether to try to prosecute the 13-year-old as an adult, a decision which would ultimately be up to a judge, office spokesperson Maro Casparian said Thursday.

The teen’s name has not been released because he is a juvenile.

The charges filed against the boy, which were first reported by The Denver Post, include two different kinds of first-degree murder charges alleging that he both killed someone after deliberation and by showing extreme indifference to human life.

The charges also include counts such as assault and endangering a public transport crew, which are felonies, and possessing a gun as a juvenile, which is a misdemeanor.

The arrest affidavit was heavily redacted and it was not always clear which juvenile police were referring to. One person told investigators that one of the juveniles said someone had been hurt and expressed regret but refused to say whether they were referring to the bus shooting after the other person learned about it in news reports.

It took a few days for police to find the juveniles but they were helped because at least one of them had been contacted by police before. They were also assisted by school administrators in identifying the juveniles based on the surveillance images.

United States News

FILE - Deborah Moody, an administrative clerk at the Alaska Division of Elections office in Anchora...

Associated Press

Alaska election officials to recalculate signatures for ranked vote repeal measure after court order

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A state court judge on Friday disqualified numerous booklets used to gather signatures for an initiative that aims to repeal Alaska’s ranked choice voting system and gave elections officials a deadline to determine if the measure still had sufficient signatures to qualify for the November ballot. The decision by Superior Court […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

UN approves more transparent procedures for people and entities to get off its sanctions lists

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The United Nations Security Council unanimously approved more transparent procedures Friday for the hundreds of individuals, companies and other entities who are subject to U.N. sanctions and want to get off the blacklists. The resolution, co-sponsored by Malta and the United States, also authorizes the establishment of a new informal working […]

5 hours ago

FILE - Rep. Shelia Jackson Lee, D-Texas, speaks during a House Judiciary Committee meeting, Dec. 13...

Associated Press

Longtime US Rep Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, who had pancreatic cancer, has died

Longtime U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, who helped lead federal efforts to protect women from domestic violence and recognize Juneteenth as a national holiday, has died. She was 74. Lillie Conley, her chief of staff, confirmed Friday night that Jackson Lee, who had pancreatic cancer, had died. The Democrat had represented her Houston-based […]

5 hours ago

Stools line the bar at Elwood's Liquor and Tap on Thursday, July 18, 2024 in Milwaukee, Wis. This w...

Associated Press

Outside the RNC, small Milwaukee businesses and their regulars tried to salvage a sluggish week

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Jay Nelson was standing outside the convenience store he manages in downtown Milwaukee when one of his regular customers walked by on her daily stroll around the neighborhood. “I’ve been telling people to come and buy even just a bottle of wine,” she said, stretching out her arms. “I hope it helps.” […]

5 hours ago

Descendants of Nelson Bell, brothers Milford Fonza, front left, and Elmer Fonza, front right, surro...

Associated Press

In a California gold rush town, some Black families are fighting for land taken from their ancestors

COLOMA, Calif. (AP) — In a tiny town where the California gold rush began, Black families are seeking restitution for land that was taken from their ancestors to make way for a state park now frequented by fourth graders learning about the state’s history. Their efforts in Coloma, a town of around 300 people that’s […]

5 hours ago

Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich stands listening to the verdict in a glass cage of a ...

Associated Press

Russia convicts US journalist of spying in a trial widely seen as politically motivated

Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich was convicted Friday of espionage and sentenced to 16 years in a maximum-security prison on charges that his employer and the U.S. government have rejected as fabricated.

5 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Sanderson Ford

3 new rides for 3 new road trips in Arizona

It's time for the Sanderson Ford Memorial Day sale with the Mighty Fine 69 Anniversary, as Sanderson Ford turned 69 years old in May.


Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s how to be worry-free when your A/C goes out in the middle of summer

PHOENIX -- As Arizona approaches another hot summer, Phoenix residents are likely to spend more time indoors.


Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.

Man fatally shot on a Denver bus after approaching teen, getting into argument, police say