The Home Front: Army and Air Force troops from Colorado ‘are part of the U.S. military buildup along the Mexico border’

Your morning roundup of stories from the front pages of newspapers across Colorado

“Support troops from the 4th Infantry Division at Fort Carson and aviation planners from Peterson Air Force Base are part of the U.S. military buildup along the Mexico border, the U.S. Northern Command said this week,” reports The Pueblo Chieftain. “Army Secretary Mark Esper and Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., were both in Colorado Springs on Wednesday to endorse President Donald Trump’s decision to send U.S. military units — as opposed to National Guard units — to the Mexico border.”

“Colorado Republican gubernatorial candidate Walker Stapleton stopped in Greeley on Thursday with U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner as part of a pre-Election Day tour of the state, talking up the oil and gas industry, criticizing Democratic opponent Jared Polis and experiencing protests from a member of the crowd,” reports The Greeley Tribune. “Stapleton, fresh off a Twitter endorsement from President Donald Trump, spoke shortly after a protester was escorted out of the Weld County GOP Victory Office in downtown Greeley by Sheriff Steve Reams. The protester yelled questions at Gardner about Trump, saying he has been silent about his rhetoric.”

“Just five months after announcing it acquired new manufacturing space for its growing business, a Grand Junction defense contractor has laid off 37 employees,” reports The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. “Capco, which contracts with the U.S. Department of Defense to build weapons, weapons components and ammunition, laid off the employees on Wednesday, a company spokeswoman confirmed. The layoffs come roughly a year after the business was searched by federal agents, who executed a warrant at the business. The details of what is being investigated are not publicly available at this time, and it’s unclear whether three employees who were placed on administrative leave after the raid were part of the recent layoffs or if they still work for the company.”

“Firestone officials have learned a serious injury to a town employee’s hand in June caused by a dump truck with faulty starting equipment could have been prevented, and an ensuing probe into town workplace safety has revealed additional concerns, documents obtained by the Times-Call show,” reports The Longmont Times-Call. “A firm hired by Firestone Interim Town Manager A.J. Krieger following the June 14 employee injury found the accident was caused by the use of a metal bar to turn a damaged flywheel under the hood of the truck.”

“As Election Day inches ever closer, rumors continue to swirl in a contentious race for Summit County Sheriff,” reports Summit Daily. “In a letter recently published by the Summit County Republican Committee, candidate Derek Woodman questioned Sheriff Jaime FitzSimons’ honesty during his hiring in 2006, and said he intends to have FitzSimons investigated if elected.”

“The Selby family woke up Tuesday morning to discover they had an unwanted visit from a member of the Steamboat Springs’ animal kingdom,” reports The Steamboat Pilot. “‘We just went out in the morning, and it was pretty clear that a bear had gotten in there and just demolished the interior of the car,” Steamboat resident Tim Selby said. It was a clear reminder that bears have yet to go into hibernation for the winter. The Selby’s 2011 Subaru Outback was totaled with a destroyed interior.”

“A bald eagle basked in sunshine while perched on the top of a huge, dead cottonwood tree Thursday on the southwest corner of Colo. 402 and County Road 9 in east Loveland,” reports The Loveland Reporter-Herald.

“The San Juan Mountains are like a river bed – at least that’s how Matt Hansen, lead pilot for Mercy Regional Medical Center’s Flight for Life, describes it,” reports The Durango Herald. “The wind breaks over the peaks like water over boulders, leaving turbulent zones, like invisible rapids, in the mountains that make this part of Colorado one of the most dangerous to fly, he said. Hansen has been flying helicopters for two decades, starting his career with the U.S. Army flying in Iraq. He joined Flight for Life about six or seven years ago, as one of three pilots who fly about 600 patient flights a year.”

“Rachel Hanson, a senior at Red Canyon High School, offers a blunt assessment about the effectiveness of adults trying to solve teen problems,” reports Vail Daily. “‘Adults only look in places where they know they will get a safe answer,” Hansen said. “Adults, when they try to talk with kids, don’t reach kids who never get asked.'”

“The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado is defending a homeless Fort Collins man whom Fort Collins police cited for illegal camping,” reports The Coloradoan in Fort Collins.

“Volunteers with Fremont Search & Rescue are the unsung heroes who are ready 24/7, 365 days a year to help during emergencies,” reports The Cañon City Daily Record. “They’re dispatched through the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office to help with searches, technical rope rescue and swiftwater rescue. The members train year around, keeping their skills sharp and their qualifications and certifications current.”

“The national office of the Sigma Pi fraternity has ordered its Boulder chapter to cease operations after five University of Colorado students told police they believe they were drugged while attending parties on the college town’s University Hill last month,” reports The Boulder Daily Camera. “Boulder police are investigating an alleged assault that was reported at the Sigma Pi house, 1111 College Ave., on the same night the first two drugging victims were hospitalized. No arrests have been made in connection with the druggings, and when asked about that investigation Thursday, Boulder police spokeswoman Shannon Aulabaugh said, “Sigma Pi is not considered a suspect at this time.” Because all the women had attended multiple parties, police said they couldn’t confirm where the students believed they were drugged.”

“Democrat Jared Polis holds an 8-percentage-point advantage over Republican Walker Stapleton in the Colorado governor’s race, and an even wider advantage among people who have voted, according to a poll from two Colorado firms released Thursday,” reports The Gazette in Colorado Springs. “The live telephone survey of 517 Colorado adults was conducted Oct. 25-30 by Telluride-based Keating Research and Denver-based OnSight Public Affairs along with Martin Campaigns. Keating and OnSight often work for Democrats running for office. Fifty percent of those surveyed said they had voted for, or planned to vote for Polis, while 42 percent said they support Stapleton, 4 percent back Libertarian Scott Helker, 1 percent favor Bill Hammons of the Unity Party, and 4 percent said they were undecided.”

“Dozens of canvassers, many of them young and wearing burnt orange T-shirts proclaiming themselves ‘New Americans,’ gathered in a park tucked inside a neighborhood just north of a busy boulevard here,” reports The Denver Post. “The paid canvassers from Pueblo and Greeley and Lakewood were weary after a day of trying to persuade voters in Denver’s northern suburbs to support Faith Winter, the Democratic state Senate candidate. If they were successful, Republican incumbent state Sen. Beth Martinez Humenik will be out of a job Tuesday and control of the state Senate will shift to Democrats.”

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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