Police: Gunman wore GPS ankle bracelet


CENTENNIAL| Police say a suspect in an Aurora triple shooting that left two dead and another wounded in November was wearing a GPS ankle bracelet at the time of the crime.

The bracelet, which Kenneth Mackey was wearing under terms of his release on bond from a separate case in Denver, tracked Mackey going to the home on Lima Street, then to the Aurora intersection where police found the victim’s car stolen car a few hours later. Those details were disclosed publicly for the first time during testimony Thursday at a preliminary hearing for Mackey, who is charged with two counts of murder and more than a dozen other crimes.

After the hearing a judge ruled there was ample evidence for Mackey to stand trial on all the charges. Mackey immediately pleaded not guilty and his trial was set for July.

Mackey, 42,  was arrested a short time after the shootings in the 1400 block of Lima Street that left Gregory McCoy, 46, and Martel Cornelius Thomas, 65, dead, and a woman wounded.

Police said Mackey and McCoy went to the home at 1437 Lima St. to rob Thomas, who sold crack cocaine from the small apartment near Lima Street and East Colfax Avenue.

Gunfire erupted and McCoy was killed inside the house while Thomas’ girlfriend was wounded. Thomas fled but was shot and died in an alleyway behind the home, police said.

Police said Mackey stole Thomas’ Cadillac and was later arrested in Denver. He is being held without bond at the Arapahoe County Jail.

Court documents in the case have been sealed so Thursday’s hearing marked the first time police and prosecutors discussed details about the case in open court.

Aurora police Detective Mike Prince, the lead detective on the case, said the GPS device on Mackey’s ankle shows he was there that night, and the evidence from the bracelet’s log matches what witnesses who saw him that night said.

Prince said Mackey and McCoy approached the home around 2:30 a.m. that night and Mackey fired two shots through the window. They then broke through the door, which Thomas had outfitted with a door stop and motion detectors.

When the pair broke in, Thomas, who was sleeping on a couch in the living room, ran to a bedroom while his girlfriend tried to hide under a bird cage in the living room.

The girlfriend told police the two men followed Thomas and she heard a scuffle from the bedroom. Then she heard four shots and saw Mackey come into the living room and start searching for valuables.

Seconds later Thomas bolted from the bedroom and grabbed a silver revolver he had hidden in the couch.

Prince said Thomas said something to the effect of “I got you now,” before shooting McCoy, who died at the scene.

Mackey then grabbed a Samurai sword that Thomas had on display and attacked Thomas, who fell through a glass coffee table before running outside. Mackey followed Thomas outside but came back in a few minutes later.

Police found Thomas laying in the alley that morning with two gunshot wounds. He died that day at an area hospital. After he came back into the apartment, Mackey stole the keys to Thomas’ car, his revolver, a pill bottle full of crack cocaine, and $80 from the girlfriend’s purse.

Prince said he then shot the girlfriend a single time in the chest. The girlfriend survived her injuries.

Based on information from a confidential informant and McCoy’s girlfriend — who told police McCoy left with Mackey that night intent on committing a robbery — police tracked Mackey to a home in Denver where they arrested him.

They also used the GOS device to track Mackey’s movements to another home in Denver where they found the pistol he stole from Thomas.

Mackey’s lawyers argued Thursday that the GPS device could be faulty, and that there was no physical evidence tying Mackey to the crime, just the statements of a confidential informant who admitted being drunk when she contacted police and the GPS.

 At the time of the shootings, Mackey, who has a lengthy arrest record, was free on bond following his May arrest in Denver on attempted murder charges.

In that case, Denver prosecutors say Mackey tried to shoot his girlfriend and her brother but failed when the gun didn’t fire. His trial in the Denver case is slated for March.