Woman sentenced to prison for ambushing officers at Weld County hotel

Published on March 18, 2022

Sarah Jesser Mugshot

GREELEY, Colo. (Weld County D.A.) – A woman accused of shooting at a Weld County deputy and two Firestone officers at a hotel near Interstate 25 in February of 2020, has been sentenced to prison.

A Weld County judge sentenced Sarah Jesser, 44, Thursday to 18 years in the Colorado Department of Corrections.

On February 13, 2020, a Weld deputy attempted to contact Jesser, who was wanted on warrants, at the Econo Lodge located at 10811 W. Interstate 25 where she was staying.

“The evidence spoke for itself,” Chief Deputy District Attorney Anthony Perea said. “The defendant made it clear that she knew law enforcement was at her door. Yet she still made the deliberate decision to pull the trigger and shoot at officers when they entered her room.”

Two Firestone officers assisted the deputy during the incident. After the defendant fired shots at the officers inside the hotel room, one of the Firestone officers shot back.

“Because of Ms. Jesser’s choices, every time I hear an officer or deputy dispatched to the Econo Lodge, my heart starts racing, my breathing gets faster, and my first thought is ‘please don’t let it happen again,’ the officer who discharged his firearm said. “Everyone was lucky that day that no loss of life occurred; but due to Ms. Jesser’s choices, I get to experience nightmares when I am not fast enough and people die.”

She pled guilty last month to attempted second-degree murder. The parties stipulated to a range of 16 to 18 years in DOC.

“It’s nothing short of a miracle that we aren’t sitting in this court room today with a homicide case in front of us,” CDDA Perea said. “Though thankfully Ms. Jesser didn’t end up killing an officer that day, she came pretty close. We’re so thankful for the men and women who put their badges on each day, and their lives on the line, to ensure the safety of the Weld County community. Unfortunately, though, these officers now have a long journey of healing from the trauma this shooting has caused them.”

The Weld County Critical Incident Response Team investigated this shooting. Based on CIRT’s thorough investigation, Weld District Attorney Michael Rourke determined in March of 2020 that the Firestone officer was  justified for firing at Jesser.

Chief Deputy District Attorney Anthony Perea and Deputy District Attorney Lillie Parker prosecuted this case. 

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