AURORA, Colo. — A judge on Tuesday sentenced the man who shot two people during a protest on Interstate 225 in July 2020 to five years of probation for each of the seven counts after a jury convicted him on seven counts in March.
Samuel Young was initially charged with assault with a deadly weapon, attempted murder, and illegal discharge of a firearm. Following a trial in March, jurors convicted him on the following counts:
- Four counts of attempted manslaughter
- Two counts of second-degree assault
- One count of illegal discharge of a firearm
Count one includes a sentence of 90 days in jail, but Young was given credit for 50 days, meaning he will serve 40 days. The judge added jail time of 30 days on count two, to be served consecutively to the 40 days in count one for a total of 70 days.
During his sentencing hearing, Young read a prepared statement, where he apologized to all of the victims and he wanted to take "full responsibility" for his actions.
The judge said he took into consideration the fact that two of the victims were in favor of restorative justice and that Young was sincere in his acceptance of responsibility.
Prosecutors had asked for six years in prison.
He was arrested shortly after the July 25, 2020 shooting on charges of attempted homicide and assault, the Aurora Police Department (APD) said.
On that night, Young was among a large group of people taking part in a protest and march over the death of Elijah McClain. At one point, the group made their way down East Alameda Avenue and onto the highway, which forced it to be closed.
However, Sky9 captured a Jeep barreling down the highway as protesters scrambled to get out of the way.
According to an affidavit, Young fired at that Jeep. Two people were struck by gunfire, APD said. One man was shot in the leg and was taken to the hospital, and another was grazed on the head. That man also went to the hospital.
Young's defense attorney had argued that he fired his gun to protect others.
There were no reports of anyone being injured by the Jeep, police said. Prosecutors countered that Young's decision to fire at the Jeep was not justified under the circumstances.
In September 2020, then-District Attorney George Brauchler announced that the Jeep's driver would not face charges, in part because protestors were illegally on the highway and the driver had little to no warning that they would be there.
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