Boulder DA rules stabbing self-defense, won't file charges

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Dec. 6—The Boulder County District Attorney's Office will not file charges in a fatal stabbing in August, ruling that the incident was a case of self-defense.

Christopher Eyer, 30, of Jamaica Plain, Mass., died following an altercation on Aug. 20.

Following an investigation, prosecutors ultimately determined Eyer was the “initial aggressor” in the incident that ultimately led to his death and that the circumstances constituted self-defense on the part of the person who killed Eyer.

“The series of events on Aug. 20th that led to the death of Christopher Eyer are terrible and unfortunate, and while criminal charges are not appropriate based on the evidence of self-defense, we must acknowledge the immense loss suffered by the family and friends of Mr. Eyer,” Boulder County DA Michael Dougherty said in a statement. “We are sorry for their loss and, also, mindful of the significant impact on everyone involved in this tragic situation.”

According to a release sent Monday, police believe Eyer had been involved in a series of confrontations after he was asked to leave an event at the St. Julien Hotel in downtown due to his level of intoxication on Aug. 20.

The victims and witnesses described a man matching Eyer's description who attacked them without provocation, while threatening to kill them. He attacked one hotel guest in the doorway of the guest's hotel room and attempted to enter the room. He then punched another man outside the hotel, spit in a woman's face, choked another woman, and attempted to choke and punch another man that had just parked his car.

Police said after those incidents, Eyer then got into a verbal exchange with two other men he did not know, and then began to chase the men to their apartment.

Eyer yelled homophobic slurs throughout the attack and repeatedly threatened to kill them. The two men tried to run and retreat to their home as Eyer struck one man in the back of the head and then chased them several hundred feet back to the door of their apartment.

Eyer jumped on one man and repeatedly struck him in the head while the other tried to intervene by tackling and choking Eyer, but could not stop the attack.

One of the victims was able to enter the apartment where he retrieved a folding knife from the kitchen and stabbed Eyer multiple times. Eyer continued to assault the assault the man until he was eventually able to get up and ran to the second floor of the apartment complex. Eyer began to chase him up the stairs before he collapsed from his injuries.

Eyer was transported to Boulder Community Health's Foothills Hospital, but died from his injuries, which included 13 stab wounds.

The man Eyer attacked was also treated at the hospital and suffered a nasal fracture, concussion, knee and leg injuries.

An autopsy report revealed that Eyer had a blood-alcohol content of 0.224.

In a release, prosecutors said the two men Eyer attacked were acting in self-defense.

“Applying the pertinent law to the facts presented through this investigation, the District Attorney's Office would be unable to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the use of deadly force on Christopher Eyer was unjustified,” the release read. “In all criminal cases, the District Attorney's Office filing standard requires that there be a reasonable likelihood of conviction. Based on these legal and ethical requirements, the District Attorney's Office determined that criminal charges should not be filed.”

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