Space Force member arrested after chasing down teens suspected of trying to steal wife’s car

Orest Schur

Bruce Finley
The Denver Post

A 27-year-old Aurora man jailed for investigation of first-degree murder after police say he chased down two teenagers suspected of trying to steal his wife’s car is an active duty U.S. Space Force member and war veteran who served two tours in Afghanistan, court documents show.

Thieves apparently had tried to steal the white Hyundai Elantra twice before at his home, the documents show.

The Hyundai’s alarm went off shortly before midnight on July 5 and Orest Schur, awakened by his mother-in-law, confronted the two teens, dressed in black, near the house where he lived on East 59th Place, according to an Adams County District Court affidavit reviewed by The Denver Post.

After the alarm on the Hyundai went off, Schur and his wife observed damage to the door handles. They heard another car alarm going off nearby and saw taillights as the teens sped away in an apparently stolen white Kia Rio, the affidavit said.

Aurora police said Schur, who was armed with a Glock 19 9 mm handgun, followed them.

He called 911 at 11:23 p.m., the affidavit said, telling a dispatcher that “there had been shots fired and he had been shot at while he was chasing some car thieves who had attempted to steal his wife’s car.” He called again and told a dispatcher he was uninjured, that he’d chased down the thieves, who had crashed, and that he had “shot back at them.”

But police didn’t find evidence supporting the claim that anybody fired at Schur, according to the affidavit.

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The Kia crashed into a backyard fence nearby on East 58th Circle. Police said they found five bullet casings in the Hyundai and that Schur shot both teens. Reaching the scene around 11:30 p.m., police saw one teen down with gunshot wounds in his back and head. He was pronounced dead of his wounds after paramedics took him to University Hospital shortly after midnight.

The other teen, a 13-year-old, ran to a relative’s house nearby and was taken to Children’s Hospital Colorado with a gunshot wound in his back and underwent surgery.

After the attempted theft of the Hyundai, Schur’s wife called 911 and told a police dispatcher she heard gunfire, adding that this was the third time thieves had tried to steal the Hyundai at their home and that her husband “was out on the streets looking around,” according to the affidavit. Later, she told police, Schur was “upset by what had happened and he indicated to her that he was nauseous.”

Schur later told police he “heard gunshots but did not see a muzzle flash” and that he “returned fire,” shooting his handgun with his right hand out the driver’s side window of the Hyundai while steering with his left hand, the affidavit said. He said “he was concerned the suspect vehicle would return to his home,” the affidavit said.

Police searched but did not find other weapons or bullet casings, the affidavit said.

Schur is stationed at Buckley Air Force Base and has received weapons training, the documents show.

Aurora police arrested Schur the next morning and booked him into the Adams County Detention Facility the night of July 6, with bail set at $500,000, for investigation of first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder.

A court hearing was scheduled for July 13.

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