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Man accused of shooting off-duty detective during Arvada robbery convicted on several charges

Samuel McConnell, 45, faces anywhere from 10 to 49 years in prison, according to prosecutors.

GOLDEN, Colo. — A Jefferson County jury has found a man accused of shooting and wounding an off-duty detective during the robbery of an Arvada gas station guilty on several charges, according to a release from the First Judicial District Attorney's Office.

Samuel McConnell, 45, was convicted on charges including second-degree assault, aggravated robbery, reckless endangerment and child abuse, according to the release.

McConnell was acquitted on the more serious charges of attempted first-degree murder and first-degree assault, the release said.

Prosecutors said on the morning of Dec. 18, 2019, McConnell walked into the Circle K at the corner of Kipling Street and West 80th Avenue armed with a gun and wearing a mask and demanded money from the store clerk.

WATCH ABOVE: Denver Police Chief Paul Pazen talks about the off-duty officer who was shot during the robbery.

Meanwhile, the release said, an off-duty officer was outside with his son getting gas when another customer told him about the robbery.

Prosecutors said the officer immediately drew his weapon and attempted to intervene, approaching the store door as McConnell left. Surveillance footage showed that McConnell was told repeatedly to stop, according to the release.

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The officer testified that he was quickly “looking down the barrel of a gun”, the release said, and he fired his weapon. Shots were exchanged in a matter of seconds, the release said, and the officer was shot in both arms. One of the officer's shots hit the windshield of McConnell’s vehicle, the release said.


Credit: Provided by Arvada Police Department
Samuel McConnell

The release said McConnell sped away, colliding with another vehicle on West 80th Avenue before continuing northbound on Kipling Parkway. Tips from the public helped police find McConnell that evening, the release said.

Prosecutors said during the trial, McConnell testified that he shot at the officer in an attempt to get him to stop shooting. 

The release said McConnell left the store with a little over $200 in cash and admitted that his two-year-old daughter was in the car during the entire incident.

RELATED: Suspect in Arvada robbery had 2-year-old daughter in vehicle during shootout with detective

McConnell is being held without bond at the Jefferson County jail, according to the release, and faces 10 to 49 years in prison. A sentencing date has not been set.