Former Aurora police officer who beat Black man with gun goes to trial and Boulder DA lets off deputies involved in fatal HWY 36 shooting


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    Former Aurora police officer who beat Black man with gun goes to trial and Boulder DA lets off deputies involved in fatal HWY 36 shooting Alexis Kenyon


Colorado lawmakers consider $11 million plan to keep mentally ill defendants out of jail 

Colorado lawmakers have proposed an $11 million plan to overhaul the state’s approach to mentally ill criminal defendants. Democratic Representatives Javier Mabrey and Judy Amabile introduced HB24-1355 last month.

It proposes diverting thousands of people charged with mid- to low-level crimes into mental health support programs, especially targeting those whom courts have ruled incompetent for trial due to mental illness or developmental disabilities.

After receiving unanimous approval from the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, with an amendment granting more discretion to district attorneys, the bill now heads to the Committee on Appropriations.  

Former Aurora police officer who beat Black man with gun goes to trial

Former Aurora police officer John Haubert is on trial this week over the violent arrest of a Black man, Kyle Vinson, in 2021.

Body camera footage and court documents show Haubert choking and hitting Kyle Vinson with a gun. Vinson, who told the Associated Press he is an Army veteran, was hospitalized for welts and a cut on his head that required six stitches, police said.

Haubert, who has pleaded not guilty and resigned from his position, is accused of using excessive force during Vinson’s arrest and facing assault charges.

Francine Martinez, an officer who accompanied Haubert during the 2021 attack, has already been convicted of failing to intervene during the arrest.

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No charges against deputies in fatal HWY 36 shooting

No Charges Against Deputies in Fatal Highway 36 Shooting. The Boulder County District Attorney has cleared three sheriff’s deputies and a state trooper who were involved in the fatal shooting of a man on Highway 36 last year. The DA’s office said that under the law, the officers did not commit a crime that can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, according to the Daily Camera.

Police shot and killed 50-year-old Efran Inda in December 2023 after they said they saw Inda’s car pulled over on westbound 36 near McCaslin Boulevard. John Ziadeh, one of the officers, alleges he radioed for backup after noticing a bullet hole in the side of the car and window.

Three Boulder County deputies responded. According to police reports, Inda refused to leave his car when backup arrived. When he did, the officers alleged he had a handgun in one hand. He walked to the back of his car and put the weapon on the trunk. Officers say they repeatedly asked Inda to come toward them and away from the vehicle, but he yelled for the officers to shoot him. After Inda said he was going to pick up his gun, police shot and killed him.

The DA has scheduled a virtual town hall to discuss the case tomorrow afternoon at 3:30 p.m.

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Denver diverts flower bed funds to flow to migrants.

According to Axios Denver, Mayor Mike Johnston called for cutting back funding for flower designs in public parks across the city to free up cash for new immigrant support.

The cuts will affect about 4 acres of flower beds in about 80 parks across Denver. Civic Center Park, thanks to volunteer efforts, will continue to bloom. In addition to the flowers, Johnston has cut about 20% of the Parks and Recreation Department workforce and shifted the department to more sustainable and maintenance-friendly landscape choices.

Further budget adjustments are expected to be presented to the Denver City Council in April as the city reallocates resources to assist newly arrived immigrants.

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Boulder Clean Commute

The City of Boulder has started a new program to pay people for not using a car to get to work.

Under Boulder Clean Commute, the city will match employer incentives up to $1.25 for each qualified work trip, for up to $2.50 a day, according to the Daily Camera. Eligible employees walk, bike, or take public transit to and from their jobs. Boulder Clean Commute is only open to downtown employers and those in Boulder Junction, around Pearl and 30th streets.

The Camera says employees will get their payments on a virtual debit card.

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Alexis Kenyon

Alexis Kenyon

Alexis Kenyon is an experienced radio reporter with more than 15 years of experience creating compelling, sound-rich radio stories for news outlets across the country. Kenyon has master's degrees from the University of California, Berkeley, Graduate School of Journalism in radio broadcast and photojournalism. She has worked in KGNU's news department since 2021 as a reporter, editor, and daily news producer. In all her work, she strives to produce thought-provoking, trustworthy journalism that makes other people's stories feel personal. In addition to audio production, Kenyon runs KGNU's news internship program and oversees the department's digital engagement.

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