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A rookie policewoman apparently lost her weapon in a...

AURORA, Colo. -- A rookie policewoman apparently lost her weapon in a struggle with a drunk driving suspect and was shot dead early Saturday. An Explorer Scout who stopped to help was wounded in the back.

Police Sgt. Mike Stiers said officer Deborah Sue Corr, 26, wife of a Denver policeman, died about three hours after the shooting from two gunshot wounds to the head.

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Glen Speis, 19, of Aurora, was in serious but stable condition at Presbyterian Hospital. Stiers said Speis is a police Explorer Scout who sometimes rides in patrol cars, but was a passerby in the pre-dawn incident.

Steirs said Joseph Michael Ervin, 30, was arrested after police traced his license plate number to an apartment in Aurora. The suspect jumped from a third-story window of the building in an attempt to elude the authorities, police said. He was examined for possible injuries from the jump at Aurora Community Hospital and released to custody of police.

Authorities said Ervin is wanted in Fort Worth, Texas, on a murder warrant. At the time of the shooting, he was free on bail in connection with a Denver sexual assault charge. Ervin has a history of assorted arrests, including at least one arrest for robbery, officials said.

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The police spokesman said Mrs. Corr stopped a suspected drunk driver about 1 a.m. and called for a backup unit after a struggle began.

'She called for a cage car indicating she was going to make an arrest,' said Stiers. 'When the backup officer arrived just a couple of minutes later, he found her down with bullet wounds to the head and the police explorer also down with a bullet wound in the back.'

The preliminary investigation indicated Mrs. Corr was shot three times with her own weapon, he said.

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