Alleged gunman at large in Parachute |

Alleged gunman at large in Parachute

Glenwood Post Independent Staff
Aspen, CO Colorado
Police are searching for Jared Thomas Burtard, who was seen with a gun in Parachute. (Contributed photo)

PARACHUTE ” Police are continuing to search for a gunman in Parachute after a family dispute Wednesday morning.

According to the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office, Jared Burtard, 21, had a verbal confrontation with his brother-in-law around 10:17 a.m. Burtard then allegedly pointed a rifle at his brother-in-law and left the residence with the loaded weapon.

Burtard was last seen leaving the area on foot and was headed out of town into the hills to the northwest on foot. He is reportedly still at large.

The Parachute Police Department is asking citizens to lock their doors and windows, be aware of what is going on in their neighborhood and call 911 if they see the gunman or have any information to report.

School facilities in Battlement Mesa and Parachute were locked down on Wednesday as a precautionary measure.

Garfield County School District 16 Superintendent Steve McKee said that around 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, he received information that there was a possibly suicidal gunman on the loose, traveling on foot somewhere in Parachute. He locked down all school facilities including the district office, Early Child Literacy Center, Bea Underwood Elementary and St John’s Middle School.

“We just didn’t want to take any chances,” McKee said. “We just wanted to make sure that everything was secure.”

The Garfield County All Hazards Response Team was called out, according to Tanny McGinnis, Garfield County Sheriff’s community relations deputy.

At about 12:40 p.m., a team of heavily armed law enforcement agents wearing green uniforms were seen entering the Parachute Police Department headquarters. They left in a van about 20 minutes later, presumably to find or deal with the gunman.

The Colorado State Patrol confirmed the report.

“They were looking for an armed person walking in the Parachute area who was of concern,” Colorado State trooper Brian Koch said.

Parachute is located west of Rifle, on the Interstate 70 corridor.

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