Who Was Michael Moran? Cortez Police Officer Shot

Michael Moran was a police officer with the Cortez Police Department, Colorado who was shot in the line of duty and sadly died.

Moran was shot during a routine traffic stop around 11:25am Wednesday, November 29th 2023.

Two suspects involved in the shooting were later stopped by other officers with one dying and the other being taken into custody.

Following this tragedy, we delve into the life of Michael Moran Cortez.

Who was Michael Moran Cortez?

michael moran cortez

Michael Moran was a police officer with the Cortez Police Department who died in an officer involved shooting on November 29th.

At approximately 11:25 am Wednesday, a Cortez Police Department officer, Sgt. Moran initiated a traffic stop on South Broadway. 

Shots were fired and the officer was subsequently injured. 

The suspects fled in their vehicle and were quickly located in the 7500 block of Hwy 160-491.  

Additional shots were exchanged between the suspects and officers at the second location. 

In that exchange, one suspect died on the scene and a second was taken into custody.  

The injured Cortez Police Officer was transported to Southwest Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

Following his passing, the Cortez Police Department published an end of watch tribute.

“Sgt. Michael Moran served his country as a Marine for 9 years, including two tours in Iraq, prior to joining the Cortez Police Department in 2012.  

“As a new officer, Sgt. Moran rose quickly through the ranks, becoming a K-9 handler in 2016.  He was most proud of his canine partner Otto who served by his side until retiring in 2020. 

“Sgt. Michael Moran will be remembered by his fellow officers for his dedication and sense of humor. He leaves behind two daughters, many friends, and family,”

Michael Moran Obituary

Numerous tributes have poured in for Michael Moran Cortez following his passing.

The Arvada Police Department Colorado said: “The Arvada Police Department sends our support and condolences to the Cortez Colorado Police Department for the tragic loss of Sgt. Michael Moran, killed in the line duty,”

Monte Vista Police Department said: “Our thoughts and prayers are with the Cortez Police Department and family as they mourn the tragic loss of Sgt. Michael Moran who was shot and killed during a traffic stop today,”

The Parker Police Department said: “It is with a heavy heart we hear of the tragic loss of Sergeant Michael Moran, who was killed in the line of duty today. 

“We hope the comfort of friends and family will help the members of the Cortez Police Department and the Officer’s family through this tragic time.

Colorado Governor Jared Polis said: “I am saddened to hear of the tragic passing of the Cortez Police Officer in the line of duty. 

“My thoughts and prayers are with their family, as well as the Cortez Police Department and the community during this time. This officer dedicated their career to serving and protecting their community,”

May he rest in peace.


According to Wikipedia,

Cortez is a home rule municipality that is the county seat and the most populous municipality of Montezuma County, Colorado, United States.

The city population was 8,766 at the 2020 United States Census.

In 1886, the town was built to provide housing for the men working on the tunnels and irrigation ditches required to divert water out of the Dolores River and into Montezuma Valley.

The town was named for Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés.

It is a popular stop for tourists, who stay there because of its central location among surrounding attractions, such as Mesa Verde National Park, Monument Valley, and the Four Corners.

There are many prehistoric sites in the Cortez area…large parks or centers, such as Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, Canyon of the Ancients National Monument, Hovenweep National Monument, and Mesa Verde National Park.

There are also smaller or individual sites, such as Cowboy Wash, Hawkins Pueblo and cliff dwellings, Lowry Ruin, Mitchell Springs Archeological Site, also known as the Mitchell Springs Ruin Group, Mud Springs Pueblo, and Yucca House National Monument.

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