DENVER (AP) — Video from a Denver television station shows that a pro-police demonstrator who was fatally shot by a security guard hired by the station was apparently angry that he was being filmed as he argued with another man just seconds before the shooting.
The cellphone video taken by the producer for KUSA-TV on Saturday shows 49-year-old demonstrator Lee Keltner in a confrontation with a man wearing a T-shirt that read, “Black Guns Matter.” A bystander is trying to defuse the argument, which occurred after dueling left- and right-wing rallies downtown.
The video shows Keltner pulling out a can of pepper spray or Mace then walking out of view. A man’s voice — it’s unclear if it’s Keltner — is heard saying the area was no place for cameras.
“Get the cameras out of here or I’m going to f—- you up,” the unidentified man says. Keltner and the KUSA-TV guard, identified by police as Matthew Dolloff, are then shown scuffling before the video stops and the shooting occurs.
The producer resumes filming and tells arriving police that he is with the press and says of the man who was shot, “That guy was going to get me.” He also says the security guard shot Keltner because Keltner used mace.
KUSA-TV posted the video on its website but did not identify the producer.
Denver police declined to comment on the video, saying it is reviewing all evidence as part of its ongoing investigation, spokesperson Christine Downs said.
Photos from The Denver Post show that Dolloff, standing in front of the producer, apparently tried to push Keltner back when Keltner slapped him in the head. The photos then show Keltner using pepper spray as Dolloff holds a handgun. Keltner then falls to the ground after being wounded.
Dolloff has been jailed for investigation of first-degree murder. Prosecutors have until Monday to file charges.
Matt Isborn, the owner of Isborn Security Services, said Wednesday that his company had hired Dolloff to work for KUSA-TV. He said the information released so far shows that Dolloff’s actions were “strictly defensive in nature” and his quick reaction may have saved the producer’s life.
KUSA-TV said it has hired private security guards for months to accompany its journalists at protests and that Dolloff was hired through the Pinkerton security company. The station said it had asked for guards that were not armed.
Pinkerton has said Dolloff was hired by a contractor, whom it did not identify, and was not an employee.
Doug Richards, a lawyer who said he represented Dolloff’s family, previously said Dolloff opened fire because he saw Keltner reach into his pocket and that he feared for his safety. A chronological sequence of 71 photos from The Denver Post do not appear to show the move by Keltner.
Police initially said two guns were found after the shooting but court documents did not mention a second gun.
Denver officials have said Dolloff did not have a license to work as a security guard in the city. Companies that employ unlicensed guards can have their company licenses suspended or revoked or be ordered to pay fines. The city attorney’s office said Dolloff, Pinkerton and KUSA-TV could also face civil or criminal action.
Isborn’s statement did not address the licensing issue and he did not return a telephone call seeking further comment. In his statement, he said he has hired Dolloff as a contractor for assignments for over a year and he has “demonstrated professionalism and exceptional character.”
Dolloff had a permit to carry a concealed weapon in Colorado issued by his local sheriff’s office, but it was suspended Monday because of the allegations he faces, Elbert County Sheriff Tim Norton said.
Associated Press writer James Anderson contributed to this report.
Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.