Statetap: Tempers flare at Denver DA office in response to police shooting

“How would you feel if your kid got killed?” Jose Castaneda asked, inches away from the faces of a group of district attorney’s office members in Denver on Tuesday. Castaneda is the cousin of Jessie Hernandez, a 17-year-old Thornton girl who was shot and killed by police after driving a stolen car into two police officers, injuring one. A group of protesters small in numbers but not in passion took to the Denver District Attorney’s office, demanding to meet with Mitchell Morrissey – the man who will ultimately decide whether to press charges against the officers involved in the shooting. The mood was tense and explosive at times, the Denver Post‘s Jesse Paul reports. This is the fourth incident in the past seven months in which police shot someone allegedly using a car as a weapon, and the latest on a growing list of deaths at the hands of law enforcement in Colorado. Chief deputy district attorney Lamar Sims assured protesters that “we do our best to listen,” eliciting an indignant response from many in the crowd. “They can fix [the injured officer’s] leg,” Castaneda said, “but what are they going to do to bring [Jessie] home?” (Photo via the Denver Channel.)

Volunteers combed El Paso County over the weekend, gathering information for the annual “Point-In-Time” survey, organized by Pikes Peak United Way. The nonprofit devoted to serving and advocating for the local homeless community says that good data is crucial to securing adequate funding and developing a strategy for how to best make use of those resources. The census effort will run through Wednesday. Organizers from United Way warned that their findings could end up being understated, because it’s nearly impossible to quantify the full extent of homelessness in the region. Via the Gazette.

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 5.51.48 PMRags Over the Arkansas River, a group opposing artist Christo’s upcoming Over The River installation, says it plans on appealing a federal court ruling in favor of the Bureau of Land Management’s approval of Christo’s project. The project has already weathered a slew of lawsuits. If it survives this new appeal, Over The River will feature nearly six miles of translucent fabric panels strung over the Arkansas River between Canon City and Salida for two weeks at the end of this summer. Via the Pueblo Chieftain. (Rendering of the proposed installation by Christo.)

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 5.42.04 PMCopies of annual satirical publication the Snowdown Sneer were scattered all over Durango Monday morning. Some highlights from this year’s issue: Silverton proudly embraces its burgeoning pollution-based tourism industry; Durango School District 9-R Superintendent Daniel Snowberger reviews test results in the district and decides that what kids really need is more testing; and La Plata County Sheriff Sean Smith announcing that every concealed carry permit his office issues will come with a free kitten, as part of an effort to become a “kinder, gentler department.” Via the Durango Herald.


  1. Well, the sordid history of cops shooting first, and hauling out the barrels of whitewash afterwards, is, really, nothing new. Here, in Denver, it’s not the “blacks” – especially since we have a “black” Mayor, and a “black” Chief of Police – replete with a cap with more “scrambled eggs”, or gold braid, on it than even old Douglas MacArthur wore when he was playing “Emperor-surrogate of Japan”.

    No. Here it’s the “Mexicans”, who are the “bottom of the barrel” when it comes to citizenship, rights, and respect. Same basic fears, ignorance, and hate, just displaced a little – from “black” skin to “reddish-brown”, by way of such vaunted “heroics” as, for instance, the Sand Creek Massacre, in Cowlorado history.

    After all, whitewash is a hell of a lot cheaper than training – or any other attempt to get out of the 19th Century mindset. Isn’t it?

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