Shooting on Highway 17 leaves two dead


SAGUACHE COUNTY — A chase involving a car theft that began in northern Saguache County Sunday, Aug. 25 around 10 a.m. ended in Alamosa County with the deaths of a man and a shotgun-wielding woman who was shot by a Colorado State Patrol (CSP) trooper.
The woman, Jennifer Sharp, 37, of Lavaca, Texas was pronounced dead at the scene. Her companion, Nelson Billings, 28, also of Lavaca, Texas, is believed to have shot himself and also was pronounced dead at the scene.
According to one unconfirmed report, Sharp was employed at Grammy’s Kitchen in Moffat and Billings had been seen eating lunch at times in Grammy’s parking lot. The following account is taken from the official CBI report.
Saguache County deputies attempted to contact the driver and passenger of a stolen vehicle (silver, Jeep Patriot) in the town of Moffat, on Saturday morning. A pursuit was initiated by Saguache County deputies, and later joined by a CSP trooper and an Alamosa County deputy.
Sharp brandished a shotgun during the course of the pursuit that traveled along several county roads.
A CSP sergeant successfully deployed stop sticks on Colorado Highway 17 at the Highway 112 junction, near the Saguache/Alamosa county line.
The stolen vehicle came to a stop in the middle of Colorado Highway 17. Sharp and Billings both exited the vehicle, with the shotgun brandished during the pursuit, and may have been heading toward another vehicle that had pulled over in the area to yield to the pursuit.
CSP trooper Ramiro Contreras fired multiple rounds toward the suspects. At least one of the suspects fired a weapon. Contreras has been with the CSP since 2007. He was placed on paid administrative leave per policy.
There were no injuries to law enforcement during the incident.
This is an ongoing CBI investigation. The Saguache Sheriff’s Office said no further details of the incident will be released until the investigation is concluded. At the completion of the investigation by CBI agents, case information will be forwarded to the 12th Judicial District Attorney’s Office for their review.


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