The Home Front: The cop in that crazy Fremont County evidence-in-storage-locker story didn’t appear in court

“Despite Tuesday being his first scheduled appearance, former Fremont County Sheriff’s Office Detective Robert Dodd did not appear in court for entry of counsel,” reports The Cañon City Daily Record. “Dodd faces two counts of second-degree official misconduct and abuse of public records. Charges were filed May 4 by District Attorney Molly Chilson. According to the complaint, between Dec. 25, 2016, and Dec. 30, 2016, Dodd knowingly altered a public record even though he had not been authorized as a custodian of the record. The details of what Dodd altered were not disclosed. The complaint also states that between and including Aug. 15, 2006, and Dec. 20, 2016, ‘Dodd, a public servant, unlawfully, knowingly, arbitrarily and capriciously refrained from performing a duty imposed upon him by law.’ The charges stem from the discovery of evidence in a storage unit that belonged to him. The evidence surrounded the 2006 murder of 17-year-old Candace Hiltz.”

“Routt County Treasurer Brita Horn is preparing for a marathon campaign to try and get a promotion and become the state treasurer,” reports The Steamboat Pilot. ‘I’m the hardest working woman around,’ Horn said. ‘I’m going to crisscross the state.’ Horn has served as the county’s treasurer since 2014. She is the second Republican to enter the race for state treasurer after State Rep. Justin Everett, R-Littleton. Horn said her tenure at the county has prepared her for a treasury job on a bigger scale. ‘I know how money flows. I know how money works,’ she said. Routt County voters, and other voters across the state, are likely familiar with Horn’s handling of overdue property tax payments from Peabody Energy last year due to the company’s bankruptcy filing.”

“The city of Loveland needs to deal with a growing vagrancy problem, members of the City Council agreed at their meeting Tuesday night, and the issue is complex, they said,” reports The Loveland Reporter-Herald. “The topic came up during public comment time, before the council started work on its regular agenda. Later in the meeting, the council voted unanimously to spend almost $60,000 this year to transfer the Loveland Reporter-Herald archives to the museum. On the topic of vagrancy, Clay Caldwell, owner of Mo’ Betta Gumbo, listed the problems he sees outside his downtown restaurant: ‘Vagrancy, panhandling, loitering, vandalism, theft, doing drugs. We have open urination, open drinking. And this is just on my corner.'”

“A handful of University of Northern Colorado students spent the past several months sewing packs, making dry bags, learning to paddle and generally preparing for one heck of a trip,” reports The Greeley Tribune. “Next week, a group of eight students, faculty and experts will paddle 290 miles into the Arctic Circle to research how changing temperatures might affect tree growth in the area. The group started their journey by vehicle, leaving Greeley on Tuesday. James Dunn, a UNC professor and chairman of the school’s department of geography and geographic information science, has been on trips like this before. He has some interesting stories, including one about running out of food halfway through the trip and being miraculously saved by a local bush pilot.”

“Guadalupe Gomez was cleaning the lobby of the Clarion Inn that Sunday morning when she heard a little noise,” reports The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. “It was 5:30 a.m. and she wondered if she was just hearing things and scaring herself. It was only her second weekend working at her second job, so she was still getting used to an unfamiliar place. She heard a faint sound, a tiny “Ah!” and as she walked past the swimming pool, she looked over and saw a small girl flailing in the water.”

“Lafayette City Council members could push for more local control over where and how oil and gas pipelines operate within their borders in the coming months, officials suggested Tuesday night,” reports The Longmont Times-Call. Following a presentation from Josh Joswick, a community organizer with the Earthworks Oil and Gas Accountability Project, council members mused about drafting legislation on how to regulate existing wells within the city. Lafayette currently has only nine wells, according to officials.”

“It’s summer and the November election is only five months away, so it was time for City Council to make some informal decisions Monday night about what it is willing to ask voters this year,” reports The Pueblo Chieftain. “First, they want voter support for a quarter-cent sales tax increase to pay for hiring 24 new police officers and refurbishing a list of city fire stations. Unlike previous tax requests, this one would not be a five-year request but a permanent hike in the sales tax so there wouldn’t be any risk that the additional $3.5 million a year would run out after the additional police were hired.”

“To the casual observer, Memorial Day weekend in Glenwood Springs was hopping,” reports The Glenwood Springs Post-Independent. “And with a full slate of events on the schedule, downtown businesses look to summer with anticipation — even as the Grand Avenue Bridge detour looms in mid-August. That sort of collaboration isn’t new. Cooper Corner Gallery participates in the monthly Glen-A-Palooza, a series of events that encourages people to get downtown on the second Friday of each month. The gallery has held receptions at that time since it opened two years ago, and in the past has worked with Artists Mercantile and Art on Eighth to create an art walk.”

“Fort Collins is rolling ahead with 365-day bus service. The City Council on Tuesday approved additional funding for Transfort, the city-owned and operated transit system, to provide service on Sundays and holidays,” reports The Coloradoan in Fort Collins. “Regular Sunday service will be a first in the 41-year history of Transfort. It has provided occasional service on the popular MAX route for special events. The option for service approved by council includes MAX and five supporting routes beginning in August. Other options proposed by city staff would have offered fewer routes at lower costs.”

“A divided Louisville City Council voted on Tuesday evening for a dramatic pay increase for future council members and mayors — the first pay hike the council has voted for since 1999,” reports The Boulder Daily Camera. “The measure that passed 4-3 on Tuesday included language that city staff pursue a metric by which future raises will be implemented as to avoid an 18-year lapse in raises. Louisville’s mayor is currently paid about $6,000 per year, and the ordinance calls for that to increase 140 percent, to $14,400. The ordinance increases council members’ salaries 220 percent, from $3,000 a year to $9,600 a year. The council has not increased its pay since 1999, when it went from $100 to $250, according to council member Jay Keany, who served on the council at the time.”

“State regulators seized four Denny’s restaurants in Colorado Springs Tuesday and will take over four more southern Colorado locations Wednesday after current and former owners failed to pay nearly $191,000 in sales and payroll taxes, according to the state Department of Revenue,” reports The Gazette in Colorado Springs. “An abrupt closure of the restaurants Monday night triggered Revenue Department officials to act quickly to seize the eateries, said Rodney Johnson, compliance director for the department’s tax division. They changed locks and posted closure notices to guard against any removal of equipment or machinery that might need to be auctioned to satisfy back taxes, he said.”

“Colorado could be on the hook for spending close to $700 million more per year by 2023 if the federal government does away with its enhanced contribution to the Medicaid expansion, according to a new report released Tuesday,” reports The Denver Post. “The report, from the left-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, found that Colorado could be one of the states most impacted by the repeal of Medicaid expansion that is proposed in the U.S. House of Representative’s version of the GOP health care bill. That’s because the federal government, which splits the cost for Medicaid with each state individually, contributes a below-average amount of money to pay for all other Medicaid patients in Colorado. Ending the feds’ enhanced contribution to the expansion would mean Colorado would have to pay more than others if it wants to maintain coverage for people who gained it through the expansion.”

“When a federal judge granted class action status earlier this year to a lawsuit by homeless plaintiffs, he took the unusual step of strongly urging attorney Jason Flores-Williams to find some experienced co-counsel,” reports Denverite. “Now one of Denver’s most prominent civil rights attorneys, David Lane, is signing on to the case. ‘Denver’s war on the homeless is unconscionable, and we will do whatever we can to protect the most helpless members of our society from the economic interests that are trying to criminalize their status,’ Lane said.”

“U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet will hold three hour-long town halls in Frisco, Edwards and Glenwood Springs on Friday, his office announced Tuesday,” reports ColoradoPolitics. “The Denver Democrat plans to answer questions chosen at random from the audience at the events. The Frisco town hall is scheduled for 11 a.m. to noon at the Summit County Community and Senior Center, 83 Nancy’s Place. The Edwards town hall is scheduled for 2 to 3 p.m. at Colorado Mountain College Vail Valley, 150 Miller Ranch Road. The Glenwood Springs town hall is scheduled for 5:15 to 6:15 p.m. at the Glenwood Springs Branch Library, 815 Cooper Ave.”