Home Front: Cop resigns after stealing granola bars from crime scene

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

“A La Plata County Sheriff’s Office lieutenant who serves as commander of the Southwest Drug Task Force will resign at the end of the month after allegedly stealing food from a crime scene while on a drug bust in 2017,” reports The Durango Herald. “‘It’s very unfortunate,”’ said Christian Champagne, 6th Judicial District attorney. ‘But the integrity and credibility of law enforcement always has to be above reproach.’ About a month ago, a homeowner, who was subject to a marijuana cultivation drug bust in 2017, found video from his security camera of Lt. Ryan Engle in his garage stealing three to five granola bars, Champagne said.”

“A barbershop established to serve Boulder County’s non-white residents, and one of only a few black-run businesses in the city, is being uprooted after sinking tens of thousands of dollars into its rented space in favor of a wine bar run by the owner of a competing barbershop,” reports The Boulder Daily Camera. “The Brooklyn Barber Academy will leave its home of nearly three years in March, when the lease ends. After months of inquiries about re-upping, owner Ja’Mal Gilmore said his landlord, Emerald Management, informed him earlier this fall it had signed a lease with a new tenant for the unit — despite the fact that there are three other vacancies in the same building at 2900 Valmont Road.”

“The city of Montrose aims to add language to its public tobacco smoking ban to prohibit youth from using vaporizers and electronic cigarettes — an idea intended to help deter children who use the battery-powered devices from becoming addicted to nicotine,” reports The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. “The proposed changes would ban anyone under age 18 from publicly inhaling or exhaling vapors of any substance through heated oral devices, a process called ‘vaping.’ It would also ban youth from possessing the related paraphernalia in public spaces.”

“The girlfriend of Christopher Watts told police she didn’t see any red flags that would lead her to believe he was capable of murdering his pregnant wife and two young children,” reports The Longmont Times-Call. “According to discovery material released Thursday, Nichol Kessinger didn’t think of murder when Watts texted her on Aug. 13 and said his family wasn’t home, and asked her to call him.”

“Air pollutants some say come from oil and gas operations in Weld County are drifting into neighboring communities and raising alarm bells for activists in Boulder County. But Weld County leaders said they are skeptical of the scale of the impact that local oil and gas operations have on air quality,” reports The Greeley Tribune. “It’s not the first time air quality in the region, including Weld County, has come under the microscope recently. The Colorado Regional Air Quality Council in Denver announced in October that a nine-county region along the Front Range failed to meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ozone standard, which is 70 parts per billion and was set in 2015. The region also doesn’t meet the EPA’s 75 parts per billion standard set in 2008.”

“A physical repository of Loveland history is on its way to becoming just a memory itself,” reports The Loveland Reporter-Herald. “Timberlane Farm Museum, a nonprofit living-history museum that told the stories of Loveland and Larimer County through the lives and possessions of one of the city’s earliest settlers, closed at the end of 2016 and now appears to be destined for a new owner and a different use. In early November, the board of the museum sold off most of the artifacts that had been preserved in the two houses and several farm buildings on the 10-acre property at 2306 E. First St. The property will be the next to go, according to board members.”

“Susana Cordova said her selection Thursday as the sole finalist for the job to succeed longtime Denver Public Schools Superintendent Tom Boasberg is important for many reasons,” reports The Denver Post. “The 52-year-old Cordova — the district’s deputy superintendent — is not only a Latina woman, but a kid from Denver who, as a student at Abraham Lincoln High school, strived for a better life. And now she’s an example for a current generation of students who also want to achieve greater things. ‘I think it’s important for kids to see someone who looks like them and talks like them be able to succeed,’ Cordova said. ‘But I never thought in my wildest dreams this would be happening to me.'”

“Friends say Hayden Savage had a smile that could fill a room, an infectious personality that made those around him feel good and a passion for the outdoors,” reports The Steamboat Pilot & Today. “‘His enthusiasm to always want to push and to be outside made him special,’ friend Mike Rundle said. ‘He was always pushing to go on adventures, and it was something that you just couldn’t pass up. I’m very similar in a lot of ways. I’m going to seize every opportunity I have to go do something with my friends, and he was all about creating those opportunities.'” Savage, 24, died Saturday after the snowmobile he was driving veered off Routt County Road 16 near Stagecoach Reservoir. The machine and Savage were thrown into a grove of aspen trees just off the road. First responders attempted CPR, but Savage was pronounced dead at the scene.”

“Colorado State University has closed the pay gap among its tenured and tenure-track professors, according to an internal analysis released Thursday,” reports The Fort Collins Coloradoan. “Since spring 2015, CSU faced a reckoning over an analysis that showed women at the full professor rank were paid substantially less than their male counterparts, according to the university’s analysis. But a new analysis shows that after more than three years of work, CSU has eliminated statistically significant gaps in salary based on professors’ gender or minority status. Provost and Executive Vice President Rick Miranda said there’s still work to be done on an individual basis, where any remaining disparity might not show up in the statistics.”

“Colorado Springs Police Chief Pete Carey is retiring effective Feb. 1 after 34 years with the department, the city announced Thursday,” reports The Colorado Springs Gazette. “Carey, who was appointed chief in January 2012, said Thursday being on the force has been an honor, and he praised civilian employees, volunteers and officers for their courage, professionalism and commitment.”



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  1. “Air pollutants some say come from oil and gas operations in Weld County…”

    I recently had a Professor of History tell me that the Native American tribes warned White Settlers coming to Denver to be weary of pollution, since Denver sits in a valley, and the pollution thus tended to accumulate rather than disperse.
    Not sure if that story is true or not…..

    But I was taught in Geography of Colorado at CSU that particulate pollution was a problem in Denver as winds from surrounding areas picked up agricultural chemicals, drove them airborn and allowed them to accumulate & remain in the Denver air.
    Not sure why that wouldn’t also be true of pollutants from the oil & gas industry.

    The American Lung Association in 2017 stated Denver had the 11th-worst ozone levels and Fort Collins had the 15th-worst.
    The report gave Weld County an “F” for the number of high ozone days, making Weld one of 10 Colorado counties on the Front Range to earn a “D” or “F”.

    The American Lung Association said Colorado’s ozone problem has multiple causes, including vehicle exhaust, the oil and gas industry, trees, coal-burning power plants and weather conditions. Some of Colorado’s ozone drifts in from out of state.

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