MONTROSE — Details from a shooting early last week are emerging as the man accused of threatening a veteran Montrose Police Department officer recovers from a gunshot wound.
Michael Leroy Yates, 19, who is due in court for formal advisement of charges on Thursday, July 31, is accused of threatening the officer with a stolen pump-action shotgun in the Paradise Village trailer park, at 383 South Hillcrest Dr, in the early morning hours of July 14.
Yates, who was shot, was taken to Montrose Memorial Hospital for surgery, and then booked into Montrose County Jail, with bond set at $25,000.
According to the affidavit, Monday, July 14, at 12:31 a.m., a Paradise Village resident called 911 to report a suspicious man trespassing with what appeared to be a firearm.
The reporting party said he observed the man, later identified as Yates, walk up to his vehicle and open the door on the driver’s side. The reporting party confronted Yates, whereupon Yates pointed the shotgun at him, telling him to “back off.”
Yates then left the premises; officers arrived; Yates was shot.
According to the affidavit, when a detective arrived at the hospital to question Yates about what had happened, Yates told the detective, “ask the dude who shot me in the ass.”
The detective, who said Yates smelled of alcohol, asked Yates if he had been drinking, to which Yates responded, “I am sorry, but yeah.”
The detective said Yates told a MMH nurse his car had died, whereupon he cut through the trailer park looking for someone who “would be kind enough to give him a jump.”
He said when a “male saw his shotgun, he pulled a gun out on him and shot him.”
Yates told the detective that he did not point the shotgun at the reporting party, who had told him to to “f— off and go home,” and that he was shot as he jogged away.
But responding officers describe a different scenario, in which the officer who shot Yates was working his way through the neighborhood on foot when he observed a male carrying a “long gun.” The officer said the male appeared to be walking towards him, and he went to find cover.
As the male – identified as Yates – walked towards the officer, he said (in the affidavit) that he heard Yates “charge the shotgun,” and then “racked” the gun, “which makes a distinct sound.”
The officer said Yates then ran by him, heading west, continuing after he identified himself as a Montrose police officer “multiple times, and ordered that the subject stop.”
Yates then reportedly turned and pointed the gun at the officer, whereupon the officer fired four times, “striking the subject in the area of the buttocks, thus stopping the threat.”
Officers found a backpack they say Yates was carrying that contained multiple stolen items taken from vehicles on previous nights, as well as a shotgun with a live shell in the chamber.
Michael Leroy Yates is not the same Michael Yates who stabbed a Montrose High School student in 2008, on on Veterans Day 2008, but he is that Michael Yates’ cousin.
Michael Leroy Yates was booked on charges of first degree assault, possession of a weapon by a previous offender, first degree criminal tampering, felony menacing, theft and protection order violation.
As is required by law whenever officers discharge their service weapons, the 7th Judicial Critical Incident Team and officers from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation are investigating the shooting.