COLORADO SPRINGS – There’s new information from the El Paso County District Attorney’s Office on exactly who killed El Paso County Sheriff’s Deputy Micah Flick and paralyzed Thomas Villanueva, an innocent bystander, back in February.
On Tuesday during a press conference District Attorney Dan May said it was 19-year-old car theft suspect Manuel Zetina who was ultimately shot and killed by law enforcement.
For the last six months, the Colorado Springs community and those personally affected since that horrible day have been waiting for answers. What happened? Who shot first? And why wasn’t Manuel Zetina taken down quicker?
May said, “Unfortunately, law enforcement’s a dangerous job and this is an example. You try to take all the precautions you can in the world, but in the end it’s a dangerous job.”
It was six months ago when Deputy Micah Flick was shot and killed, other officers injured, and citizen Thomas Villanueva was paralyzed after he was caught in the gunfire.
“It’s just horrible, the tragedy that happened to him. He’s an innocent man just standing there. Nobody ever wanted to see this happen.”
Villanueva’s life has forever been changed by this incident and for Deputy Flick’s wife and children-they’re forced to continue on without him.
In regards to the information being given about that fateful day back in February May said, “I can’t tell you whether it’s going to give them closure or not. It’ll give them some answers…what we’re reviewing is whether the officers who fired were justified in doing that and we found that they were absolutely justified in shooting and killing Mr. Zetina.”
May said 10 officers were at the Murray Hill Apartments on February 5 to try and arrest someone for stealing a car.
“They did not know who this person was at the time that they made the arrest. They did not know that he was armed…the first time that they announce themselves as police is as they are putting the bear hug on Mr. Zetina and making the arrest.”
The situation quickly escalated from there.
“We believe that Mr. Zetina shot everybody before a single officer returned fire, but keep in mind this happens in a matter of seconds.”
May said officers didn’t shoot right away as they were concerned about shooting others. The only bullets used by deputies and police officers were found in Manuel Zetina.
The bullet that shot Villanueva was “absolutely identified by ballistics as coming from Mr. Zetina’s gun.”
The DA’s office also determined that Deputy Flick was shot by Zetina, not friendly fire. While the bullet was never found these are the circumstances leading to this conclusion:
“One is a close range shot…Mr Zetina’s gun does have blood on it. The DNA comes back to Micah Flick.”
News 5 reached out to Villanueva’s lawyer on Tuesday for a comment, but did not get a response.
This report does wrap up the DA’s investigation since no one is being charged.
CLICK HERE for the full report.