DENVER — The man found guilty of firing at Denver police officers and who later escaped from custody while at Denver Health Medical Center has been sentenced to 32 years in prison in the first criminal case against him, according to a news release from the Denver District Attorney’s Office.

Mauricio Venzor-Gonzalez, 32, was found guilty in March of five of the six counts he was charged with: attempted first-degree murder, first-degree assault on a police officer, retaliation against a witness, and two counts of possession of a weapon by a previous offender.

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This case dates back to November 2017, when prosecutors said Venzor-Gonzalez opened fire on a pursuing Denver police officer after he leapt out of a vehicle that was evading police. The officer returned fire, and has since been found justified in doing so by the DA.

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Venzor-Gonzalez was shot three times, but didn’t seek medical attention. Instead, prosecutors said he evaded capture for three days until officers found his Aurora hideout. What ensued next was what the DA’s office referred to as a “multi-hour standoff” that ended with Venzor-Gonzalez being apprehended and the recovery of numerous items including an AR-15 and Glock 26 that prosecutors said was used to fire at police.  

Months after Venzor-Gonzalez was taken into custody, he was taken to the Denver Health Medical Center, where he escaped and was able to evade police for several months. He was finally apprehended in Thornton in August 2018.  

Venzor-Gonzalez will be tried in the escape case on July 23.

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