Homebrew: Colorado’s death penalty in the crosshairs

Dying penalty

Juries sentencing mass killers Dexter Lewis and James Holmes to life in prison suggests to many that the days of Colorado’s death penalty are few, write Jordan Steffen and Kevin Simpson in The Denver Post. In the case of Holmes, one juror made the decision that could inspire a statewide ban on capital punishment. But Aurora District Attorney and theater shooting trial prosecutor George Brauchler told the reporters, “”Do you re-evaluate policy for an entire state, an entire system, off one juror?”

Recalling when

Once upon a time, voters used recalls to get rid of office-holders who were mentally or physically incapable of performing their duties. Now, voters, like those in Jefferson County who are trying to overthrow conservative school board members, use recalls to make political statements, writes Yesenia Robles in The Denver Post.

Healthy kids, grumpy parents

Colorado Springs parents are grumbling that the school board reinstated the Healthy Kids Colorado survey that critics argue invades students’ privacy by asking scandalous questions about drug and alcohol use, sexual activity, bullying and more. The federally funded survey is designed to help create healthy behaviors in youth.

This stinks

Denver Zoo’s elephant dung-to-energy project stinks, complain residents of City Park. And they want change. Via The Denver Post.

Video game

Some cops complain that bystanders’ cell-phone videos hamper self-defense; police-accountability activists argue more cameras will help prosecute excessive-force cases. Pitkin County law enforcement has jumped into the conversation about police body cams arguing that the technology would help them defend themselves against false charges of brutality, reports The Aspen Times.

Stormy research

Two Colorado State University hurricane researchers are arguing that the East Coast may see a decline in turbulent hurricanes as the North Atlantic near Greenland experiences cooling and a drop in salinity, reports The Coloradoan. But many of these landlocked professors’ collegues are saying the studies are premature and outright wrong.

Race talk

Racial tensions plague Aurora, and the city is ripe for the kinds of violent confrontations between police and demonstrators that have been flaming across the United States. But Aurora is different. Alongside a history of the police department’s racialized excessive-force cases comes a respect for civil discourse and a willingness on the part of city officials to dialog with dissenters, states Aurora Magazine.

Offensive offense

Republican attacks on Planned Parenthood generate headlines, but they also create a headache for GOP officials trying to win in Colorado, writes Jason Salzman for RH Reality Check. Outside of the fringes of the Republican Party, attacking the women’s health organization is a tough position to sell.

 

Photo credit: Christian C.n Creative Commons, Flickr

The Colorado Independent is a statewide online news source operating in a time when spin is plentiful, but factual, fair and unflinching news in the public interest is all too rare. Our award-winning team of veteran investigative and explanatory reporters and news columnists aims to amplify the voices of Coloradans whose stories are unheard, shine light on the relationships between people, power and policy, and hold public officials to account. We strive to report the news with context, social conscience, and soul, and to give Coloradans the insight they need to promote conversation, understanding and progress in this square, swing state we call home.

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