Tyler James Blanco, DOB: 9-17-90, appeared in Jefferson County Court on Friday, April 27, 2018, where he was sentenced to 20 years in prison for shooting his 23-year-old cousin in the back of the head.
In March, 2017 Mr. Blanco, his cousin and three friends had been partying in Arvada when they decided to go to a casino in Black Hawk. Shortly after they arrived at the casino, the group was asked to leave because Mr. Blanco was very drunk and loud. With the cousin driving, the group headed back to Arvada, traveling eastbound on US Hwy. 6 through Clear Creek Canyon. Mr. Blanco was sitting directly behind the driver. He fired one shot from a loaded handgun that hit his cousin in the back of the head. The bullet traveled through the young man’s head and out his eye. The vehicle immediately hit the guard rail, crashed, flipped over. One other passenger was seriously injured. Mr. Blanco and two passengers were injured less seriously.
On the trip to Black Hawk, Mr. Blanco had pulled the weapon out of his backpack, showing it off to the other passengers in the car. Immediately following the collision Mr. Blanco threw the handgun over the guardrail and down a steep embankment
On March 16, 2018 Mr. Blanco pled guilty to First Degree Assault (F3); Third Degree Assault (M1); Possession of a Weapon by a Previous Offender (F5); and two violent crime counts.