Winter Park Police reject request for information about Aurora shooting suspect
August 1, 2012
After the Sky-Hi News requested information this week about possible contact between James Eagan Holmes and the Fraser-Winter Park Police Department in July, Police Chief Glen Trainor cited a letter of denial for a similar request made by the Associated Press.Trainor’s letter, dated July 31, cites the gag order that a judge placed on the Holmes trial as well as the ongoing nature of the investigation.Holmes, 24, is the lone suspect in the July 20 shooting at an Aurora movie theater that left 12 people dead and 58 others injured. He has been charged with 24 counts of first degree murder, 116 counts of attempted murder, one count of possession of explosives, and one count of a crime of violence.Trainor’s letter states: “First, the requested records pertain to a pending law enforcement investigation, and as such, the release of the records could have an adverse effect on law enforcement’s ability to conduct investigations. …”Disclosure of the record you request may prejudice a criminal proceeding, namely Case No. 12CR1522 (the Holmes case).”A persistent rumor around Grand County suggests that Holmes was contacted in early July by a local officer during a routine traffic case, but no local authorities have confirmed that is the case.Federal authorities have also been asking questions about whether Holmes made appearances in Grand County prior to the movie theater massacre.Early last week, the owner of C & M Guns in Hot Sulphur Springs was questioned by an FBI agent, an agent with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Grand County Sheriff’s Office regarding possible contact with Holmes.The shop owner denied having seen Holmes.Agents mentioned that Holmes would have had dyed orange-red hair during the time of the possible encounter.”I would have remembered selling ammunition to a guy with orange hair,” said Clark Branstetter, owner of C & M Guns.Grand County Sheriff Rod Johnson said he had no record of any contact with Holmes through his department.It is believed that Holmes may have used the Byers Canyon Shooting Range, located near Parshall, sometime during the month of June and/or July.