Police: CO Fire Chief Shot Driving with Family was Bystander

June 21, 2022
Glen Haven VFD Assistant Chief John Jaros was killed while driving on Interstate 70 with his wife and children who were not injured.

Jun. 21—The 37-year-old man who was shot and killed on Saturday (June 18) afternoon while driving on Interstate 70 with his wife and three children amid what Aurora police believe was street racing on the highway has been identified as Assistant Chief of the Glen Haven Volunteer Fire Department, John Jaros.

Jaros was not involved in the street racing, Aurora police Officer Elizabeth McGregor said, describing him as a bystander. He was driving east on the interstate just west of Exit 288 — the intersection with East Colfax Avenue — when he was shot at about 5:35 p.m., according to Aurora police. Multiple shots were fired into the the 2020 Dodge Ram pickup but his wife and three children were unharmed.

Authorities responded to a 911 call about the shooting and discovered Jaros in the driver's seat of his pickup that was pulled over and stopped on the shoulder.

A witness told police a white sedan and a black sedan had been racing on the interstate at the time of the shooting, McGregor said. Investigators are working to piece together how the shooting happened, she said. Police said in a news release that "several shots were fired striking the Dodge Ram."

"We do not have more details on how the shots were fired, or even how the truck got hit, we just got the information that the two cars were slowing, then racing each other, then slowing, then racing each other," she said, adding that police believe the street racers were involved the shooting "in some way."

"Yeah I knew John," Linda Lambert, a fellow volunteer firefighter, told Fox31. "He goes by 'Cowboy.'"

Along with his commitment to the fire department, Jaros was also known for years of service contributing to the Rooftop Rodeo and to the Estes Park and Glen Haven communities, Lambert said.

"It's tragic. It's senseless," Lambert said.

Jaros was a self-employed provider for his family. Now, the fire department is gathering donations for his wife and children.

"They could really use the help right now," Lambert said.

Jaros was one of the hundreds of fire crew members in Larimer County helping fight the Cameron Peak Fire in 2020.

A fund has been set up to help his family at the Bank of Estes Park. Donations for the family can be made by mail or in person to The Jaros Family Fund Donation Account.

By mail: The Bank of Estes Park
c/o The Jaros Family Fund Account
P.O. Box 2390
Estes Park, CO. 80517

Branch locations:

Main Branch: 255 Park Ln, Estes Park, CO 80517
St. Vrain Branch: 501 St. Vrain Ln, #100, Estes Park, CO 80517
Niwot Branch: 7989 Niwot Rd, Longmont, CO 80503

Aurora Police are offering tipsters up to $10,000 for information on the attack. Those with information on the shooting can call Aurora police at 303-739-6113, or Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 7820-913-7867.


(c)2022 Estes Park Trail-Gazette, Colo.

Visit Estes Park Trail-Gazette, Colo. at https://www.eptrail.com/

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