Colorado News Roundup: Denver police officer shoots armed man outside bank (08.17.16)
DENVER — An investigation is underway after a police officer shot an armed man in a bank parking lot in west Denver.
The Denver Post reports an officer spotted a vehicle Tuesday afternoon that matched the description of one that had been carjacked in Arapahoe County. As officers approached the vehicle, three people jumped out and tried to flee on foot.
Police spokesman John White says one of the suspects was armed with a handgun, and at least one officer fired shots.
The man who was shot was with two other suspects — a man and a woman. All three are in custody, and the injured man is expected to survive.
No other information was released.
Deputies involved in fatal shootout won’t face charges
DENVER — The deputies involved in the fatal shooting of a man during a Park County gun battle that left one deputy dead and two other officers wounded have been cleared of criminal wrongdoing.
The Denver Post reports Undersheriff Dave Wohlers confirmed Tuesday that the 11th Judicial District Attorney’s Office has decided not to charge the officers.
Sheriff’s Cpl. Nate Carrigan was killed and two other deputies were injured on Feb. 24. The man who shot them, 58-year-old Martin Wirth, was killed when deputies returned fire.
The officers had responded to Wirth’s home to evict him after he failed to make mortgage payments.
Lawyers for Carrigan’s family and Deputy Kolby Martin, who suffered serious injuries in the encounter, said Monday they’re suing the sheriff’s office over how the eviction was executed.
Feds to review Commerce City police after misconduct cases
DENVER — Justice Department officials say they have agreed to review the Commerce City Police Department after a series of misconduct cases.
Officials on Wednesday will announce plans for the review by the agency’s Office of Community Policing Services. Officials in the suburban Denver city requested the study in July, saying incidents involving several officers had undermined public trust.
One officer staged his own shooting last year. Another was charged with unlawful sexual contact after being accused of touching three women during early morning traffic stops.
Such voluntary reviews are considered less of a stigma for a troubled department than patterns and practices investigations undertaken by civil rights investigators, which can lead to an overhaul in policies and protocols as well as court-enforceable agreements between the police force and the federal government.
Military: Colorado air base may have released toxic chemical
DENVER — The military has identified six places on an Air Force base in Colorado where firefighting foam containing toxic chemicals may have escaped into the environment and made its way into drinking water in two nearby communities.
Officials on Wednesday recommended a follow-up investigation at Peterson Air Force Base, where the foam was used in firefighting drills and equipment tests.
The foam contained perfluorinated compounds, or PFCs. They’ve been linked to cancer and other illnesses.
The chemicals were found in water systems serving about 69,000 people in the city of Fountain and an unincorporated community called Security-Widefield.
The PFCs haven’t been definitively traced to Peterson, but its proximity to the affected water systems spurred the investigation.
The military is checking bases nationwide for possible releases of the foam into the environment.
Landowner offers relocation site for Boulder prairie dogs
BOULDER, Colo. — An unnamed Colorado landowner has offered to rescue a prairie dog colony threatened by impending construction.
The Daily Camera reports that the property owner offered land about 8 miles west of Boulder, where developer Bruce Dierking wants to build 200 middle-income apartments at the Colorado National Guard Armory site. Roughly 50 to 100 prairie dogs live there.
Boulder officials approved the plan despite concern from wildlife advocates. Dierking has filed a lethal control permit but has said he will pay for relocation if an alternative habitat can be found.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials will vet the land for habitat suitability. That includes evaluating soil quality, vegetation and good stock, among other things.
Searchers find human remains near Berthoud Falls
DENVER — Search teams on the hunt for a Jefferson County man missing since January have found human remains in a backcountry area he was known to frequent.
Authorities say the discovery was made Sunday in the Berthoud Falls area near the Urad Mine in central Colorado. Clear Creek County Undersheriff Bruce Snelling says the remains were of an unidentified male.
About 60 rescuers had been looking for signs of 42-year-old Jeremy Rich, who was last seen leaving work on Jan. 22.
A previous search for Rich in June was unsuccessful.
The Clear Creek County coroner is working to identify the remains.
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