Early Bird Special: Cops return pot to clinic, Aurora cops tow lawyer’s car

Here’s our daily roundup of some of the news around Colorado that caught our attention:

• Boulder police returned two 20-gallon drums of marijuana that were stolen from a medical-marijuana clinic last week, the Boulder Daily Camera reports. Police had held onto the pot until lawyers for four robbery suspects could have it tested. Owners of the New Options Wellness Clinic say they’re tightening security.

• The lawyer representing the family of a man shot and left paralyzed by Aurora police last month claims Aurora cops towed his car in retaliation, The Denver Post’s Carlos Illescas reports. Attorney Derek Cole said Police Chief Dan Oates asked for his work and home addresses during a phone call Monday and by the time he got to his office, his car had been towed. Just a mix-up and certainly not retaliation, an Aurora spokesman said. Seems records for Cole’s Volvo inaccurately showed his registration had expired, though it had current tags. Police wouldn’t say how often cars with expired registrations get towed, though they did offer to let Cole retrieve his car without charge. Not until a drug-sniffing dog checks it out, the attorney vowed, saying he was suspicious police might plant something in his car.

The political blog Colorado Pols think the whole thing “stinks to high heaven” and wants to know what Aurora Councilman and U.S. Senate hopeful Ryan Frazier is going to do about it.

• General Motors has picked University of Colorado at Colorado Springs engineering professor Gregory Plett to research advanced battery technology for electric vehicles, the Gazette reports. UCCS gets $750,000 for Plett and two grad students to participate in a five-year, $5 million project to invent batteries that will last as long as the GM vehicles. The Colorado team will be working on finding “ways to improve control mechanisms in the wafer-thin, rectangular battery cells to track energy consumption and extend longevity.”

• Despite growing interest from residents in a burgeoning national hobby, a decision by Aurora officials keeps chickens and other barnyard animals restricted to areas of the city zoned as agricultural, the Aurora Sentinel reports. That’s only a few neighborhoods in Colorado’s third-largest city. Animal control experts urged against allowing the fowl into backyards throughout the city, warning of “roosters crowing; noise from the hens cackling; the inability to keep the hens contained; soiling the landscape and attracting predatory wildlife.” Denver recently changed its rules to allow chicken inside city limits.

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