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Colorado Springs firefighter placed on leave following domestic violence incident

KRDO NewsChannel 13

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- The Colorado Springs Fire Department (CSFD) placed a Lieutenant on administrative leave in August following felony charges related to a domestic violence-related incident involving his wife.

According to court records, CSFD Lt. Lucas Wardell, 49, pulled a gun on his wife and threatened to kill them both.

Wardell faces several charges, including two felonies -- assault with a deadly weapon and menacing.

49-year-old Colorado Springs Fire Lt. Lucas Wardell

According to CSFD, Wardell has been with the department for nearly two decades.

A spokesperson told 13 Investigates that Lt. Wardell was placed on leave two days after he was arrested. They released the following statement regarding his leave: 

"Lucas Wardell was placed on Administrative Leave with pay on August 9, 2022, and after receiving and reviewing the charging documents submitted he was placed on Administrative Leave without pay effective on August 25, 2022, in accordance with all applicable City policies."

Cpt. Michael Smaldino, Colorado Springs Fire Department Public Information Officer

According to Wardell’s arrest affidavit, obtained by 13 Investigates, the domestic incident occurred at the couple's residence on the 8700 block of Stony Creek Drive in Colorado Springs on August 6. 

Earlier that day, Wardell and his wife attended a bbq at a neighbor's home. Before the get-together, Wardell’s wife told investigators the two of them had consumed alcohol earlier in the day. 

While at the BBQ, Wardell’s wife says she sat in another man’s lap “as a joke.” Wardell’s wife said the other people at the party laughed about it, however, she told CSPD investigators that Wardell became upset and left the party. 

When both parties returned home, Wardell’s wife said her husband “charged her from the kitchen and pushed her into wall…” 

“(The wife) said Lucas held her against the wall using his left hand across the front of her neck,” court records said. 

The couple began arguing “inches away from each other’s faces, yelling loudly.” Wardell’s wife told investigators that she shoved her husband and he fell. 

“She said he immediately got back up and pushed her back with his hand hitting her neck for less than a few seconds.” 

Court records say Wardell then began throwing her dresser drawers down the stairs, and he told her to leave. 

Wardell’s wife then says her husband approached her armed with a black handgun. She said he cocked the handgun and jammed the barrel into her forehead. 

According to his wife’s testimony to investigators, Wardell said he was going to “take her out and it would be over.” Afterward, he told her the gun was empty. 

Wardell was later contacted by CSPD at his residence on the 8700 block of Stony Creek Drive and taken into custody. 

The Colorado Springs Firefighter later provided a statement to investigators stating that when he and his wife arrived home it was his wife that immediately initiated an argument, and they began pushing each other back and forth. 

Wardell admits he brought out a black Glock 9mm, however, he says he pointed the gun at himself first then his wife. 

“(Wardell) said he did not put a magazine into the gun and cleared the chamber prior to making the threats he made,” court records say. 

13 Investigates reached out to Wardell’s attorney Friday, and are waiting for a response. 

While he is on leave, the Colorado Springs Fire Department says Lt. Wardell's job responsibilities have been reassigned to other department members.

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Dan Beedie

Dan is a reporter with the 13 Investigates team. Learn more about Dan here.

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