Colorado News Roundup: Bodies recovered from Colorado River identified (07.23.16) | SummitDaily.com

Colorado News Roundup: Bodies recovered from Colorado River identified (07.23.16)

TRAGEDY

DENVER — Officials have identified two men whose bodies were pulled from the Colorado River in Grand Junction.

The Denver Post reports that 49-year-old Richard Shoemaker and 44-year-old Gary Keffer, who has been described as a transient, were both removed from the water Sunday. Their bodies had been found in different locations by people recreating in the area.

Their identities have been released days after authorities had asked for the public’s help in identifying the men.

The Mesa County Coroner’s Office says the causes of their deaths have not yet been released because of an ongoing investigation.

POLITICS

Star of ‘The Bachelor’ not running for office after all

DENVER — Ben Higgins, the most recent star of ABC’s “The Bachelor,” isn’t running after all for public office in Colorado.

Higgins announced Friday he is abandoning his run as a Republican for a Denver state House district.

He had filed paperwork only Wednesday formally declaring his candidacy.

In a statement from Disney-ABC Television Group, Higgins says that “due to unforeseen circumstances, I will not be able to move forward as a candidate.”

Campaign spokesman Roger Hudson says he cannot elaborate. Disney didn’t immediately return messages seeking comment.

Higgins appeared last year on “The Bachelorette.” This year, he was star of “The Bachelor” and now lives in northwest Denver with his fiancee. The two have a new show airing this fall, “Ben and Lauren: Happily Ever After.”

TRANSPORTATION

CDOT to use breathalyzers for drinking and driving study

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — The Colorado Department of Transportation is accepting applications from volunteers looking to participate in a drinking and driving study.

The Gazette reports the department will randomly select 200 participants for the study that will begin in August. Applications are being accepted online through Friday.

Those selected for the study will receive a smartphone breathalyzer and be asked to respond to three surveys about drinking habits and breathalyzer use. Participants will be able to keep the breathalyzer once the study is over.

CDOT spokesman Sam Cole says the department is trying to determine whether the device has an impact on people’s decisions when it comes to drinking and driving.

In Colorado last year, one-quarter of all traffic fatalities related to impaired driving occurred in August and September.

ENVIRONMENT

Beer, shoes, computer pulled from Yampa River after July 4

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. — Volunteers who cleaned up the Yampa River in Steamboat Springs found everything from flip flops to a computer monitor hiding in the water.

The Steamboat Pilot & Today newspaper reports that volunteers helped clean up the river to mitigate the effects of recreation, including tubing.

During the cleanup after the busy Fourth of July, volunteers removed 324 aluminum cans, 246 cigarette butts, 231 water bottles, 115 flip flops, 54 unopened beers, 39 T-shirts, 18 sandbags, 13 large liquor bottles and several shotgun shells from the waterway. Street signs and underwear were also found in the water.

Friends of the Yampa board member Pete Van De Carr says the Yampa isn’t a lazy river and tubers should realize anything they drop in the water will be swiftly carried away.


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