Headlines – June 13, 2023 Por Jaijongkit
The Nuggets won this year’s NBA crown by knocking off the Miami Heat last night, in Game Five of their best-of-seven series. Final score: Nuggets 94, the Heat, 89.
Last night’s celebrations following the win turned potentially lethal, with reports of several shootings that put three people in the hospital in critical condition.
The Denver Post is reporting that at least ten people were shot during the celebrations, including a suspect.
The three people in critical condition were shot near the Market and 20th street intersection. That’s where a possible suspect was arrested. Other shootings occurred on Tremont and Blake streets.
Each of the shootings occurred in the aftermath of the championship game.
Colorado Flooding, Tornado Warnings
Unsettled weather continues to cause problems in Colorado, with no end in sight to all the wet weather.
Hail pounded parts of downtown Boulder yesterday which, along with up to two inches of rain, flooded several streets and strained the city’s stormwater infrastructure. The city’s director of utilities told Boulder Reporting Lab he is confident the system can withstand it all. But the city is cautioning people to avoid underpasses.
Elsewhere, a flood watch was in effect in the Denver area for much of yesterday. Flooding led to the closure of parts of Highway 6 in West Denver. East and westbound lanes were closed for several hours, but reopened by mid-afternoon.
The National Weather Service also issued tornado warnings yesterday for Lincoln County, and parts of El Paso County.
Nearly 500 flights were delayed at Denver International Airport, with twenty-seven of them canceled, according to FlightAware.
Record Number of Polis Vetoes
Governor Jared Polis this year vetoed more bills approved by state lawmakers, than in any other year since he took office.
Now in his second term, the governor vetoed ten bills approved in the legislative session that ended last month. That compares to five vetoes in his first year in office, three in his second year, and four each in his third and fourth years, according to the Colorado Sun.
Prisoner Restraints Bill Signed
Governor Polis did, however, sign a bill Monday, which requires Colorado prisons to reform the way restraints are used on mentally ill inmates.
The bill, HB23-1013, requires the state Department of Corrections to conform with the regulations of the National Commission on Correctional Health Care on the use of restraints. According to a report compiled by Disability Law Colorado, the department is accused of chaining inmates to beds for hours at a time, with little medical oversight and unclear guidelines for initiating or ending seclusion.
The Denver Post reports that under the new law, which Governor Polis signed Tuesday, Colorado prisons have until 2027 to adopt the national commission’s more rigorous standards which include the use of soft restraints, rather than metal cuffs; the direct and routine involvement of health professionals; and regular checks on restrained inmates.
The bill also requires better documentation on the use of restraints, and the Corrections Department must submit annual reports to legislators detailing that tracking. It also regulates the use of involuntary medication on inmates.
Denver Cops Liability Claim
The Denver City Council has unanimously approved a $450,000 settlement with the family of an 18-year-old gunshot victim.
Jalonte Jones bled to death from his wounds in September 2020. Two Denver police officers who answered a call about the gunfire stood by and did nothing for ten minutes, even as Jones begged for their help, according to the Department of Public Safety.
One of the officers was later fired, and the other resigned.
Greeley Cops Kill Man in Standoff Situation
Greeley Police officers fatally shot a 35-year-old man Monday morning. The shooting occurred after a five hour long standoff between law enforcement and the man, who had barricaded himself inside a garage.
The standoff began after officers responded to a call of shots being fired, shortly before 5 in the morning.
According to a press release, the man was in a duplex when police arrived. They first tried to get him to surrender, but he fired another shot before moving to a garage on the property. Officers tried to apprehend the man with less-lethal munitions and irritants.
Around 9:30 AM, police exchanged gunfire with the man and fatally wounded him.
The man’s identity has not yet been made public, pending notification of next-of-kin.
New ADU Zoning Rules in Denver
Denver has new codes in place for homeowners building smaller, second units, known as accessory dwelling units, on their property. But a key part of the old rules is still in place.
From Denver’s urban alleys to its suburban backyards, over the past year city officials have been crafting policies for accessory dwelling units, also known as ADUs. New rules by Denver’s city officials will be placed next month concerning ADUs.
Some policy makers regard ADUs as a way to address the affordable housing crisis in Denver and have been chipping away at legal barriers to putting them on the rental market. However, one barrier still remains in effect: the homeowner still has to live on the property if they want to build or rent out an ADU.
Hurdles that city officials removed this year included the minimum lot size requirement to build detached second housing units and restricting the conversion of garages into ADUs. Properties with duplexes and row homes can also add ADUs now as well.
Denver’s main city planner Abe Barge told the Denver Post around one-third of the city allows ADUs and close to 450 ADUs have been authorized in the city since 2010.
Not everyone advocates for accessory dwelling units though. Residents in District 10’s densely populated neighborhoods, including Capitol Hill, did not sway their no at all.
With everything considered, the new rules begin for plans submitted after July 5th.