Reading from the Voice Media empire: Jose Ocampo, one of two men convicted of murder in the 2016 death of aspiring rapper Michael House, has been sentenced to life in prison without parole plus 36 years for his actions. Danielle House, Michael’s sister, is pleased by this punishment, but it hasn’t lessened her sense of loss over the slaying. Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: Millions upon millions of people have bought and sold items on Craigslist without a problem. But that doesn’t mean that horror stories involving the service are unknown, as Anthony Mott understands very well. Last year, the Jefferson County homeowner was tied up, threatened with a knife and robbed by two men who responded to a Craigslist ad, one of whom Mott managed to kill after freeing himself. Now, David Mascarenas, the surviving partner in crime, has pleaded guilty and faces decades behind bars for his role in this nightmare scenario. Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: Critics have long complained about the relatively light sentences given to some prominent white, privileged college students found guilty of sex crimes, and Jack Warmolts, a onetime Air Force Cadet who pleaded guilty to second-degree assault and unlawful sexual contact in October 2016, is an example of the phenomenon. He’s now back on the streets after serving only eight months of a one-year term. However, university student John D. Kennedy was sentenced to a minimum of nine years for sexual assault and more in part because his victim wrote an impassioned letter asking the judge in the case not to “allow another predator to go free.” Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: While opioid addiction is widely understood to constitute a national crisis, there’s disagreement about how best to tackle the problem, with some advocates arguing in favor of a health-care focus and others backing get-tough law enforcement tactics. But the latter approach fell short in the high-profile case of Sam Brunelus, who was busted on suspicion of manslaughter in the deaths of two men to whom he allegedly provided heroin laced with carfentanil, an extremely powerful synthetic opioid best known as an elephant tranquilizer. Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: A local sheriff’s office revealed the discovery of two men who’d been shot to death west of Simla, Colorado, at what’s characterized as an illegal marijuana grow. The incident feeds into the law-enforcement narrative that cannabis sales have led to increased violence in the state days after the fifth anniversary of the 2012 measure that sanctioned sales of recreational pot in the state. Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: Since 2015, authorities in Aspen have sought to make Landini Smith pay for two separate incidents in which he kicked members of the local police department. But in the end, Smith received no jail time for giving officers the boot, even though he’s committed similar acts so often that he was nicknamed the Aspen Cop Kicker. Moreover, Smith has spent plenty of time behind bars for his past actions. Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: Keith Hammock was once the driver for the Rasta Bus, a service that ferried intoxicated patrons from a slew of hip venues. But he’s now been sentenced to eighty years in prison for a 2016 shooting of two teens who invaded his home marijuana grow. One of the teens died in the incident. Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: The recent arrest of Robert Mears for allegedly attacking a ranger while under the influence of LSD isn’t an everyday occurrence at Rocky Mountain National Park. But officials confirm that drug-related incidents in general have been on the rise at RMNP, the fourth-most visited national park in the country. Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: Mere days after a $4.65 million settlement was reached in the case of Michael Marshall, who died in a detention center circa 2015 during a mental-health episode, a Career Service Board hearing officer has tossed out minor suspesions against Carolos Hernandez and Bret Garegnani, two deputies who took part in the incident. The lawyers representing the Marshall family are appalled by this decision, as well as by comments in the report about the matter Deputy Eishi Yamaguchi, who specializes in training jail personnel in use-of-force matters. In reference to Hernandez and Garegnani, he’s quoted as saying, “I have zero concerns about anything they did. I was expecting to see something different. Actually, I’d love to have the video just for training.” Westword has the story.
Reading from the Voice Media empire: Christian Willis is the third person to be sentenced for playing a role in a robbery-gone-wrong that led to the fatal shooting two years ago of Darren Bloomquist, a 49-year-old Air Force veteran who was moonlighting as a cab driver to support his disabled wife. Westword has the story.