Headlines – September 6, 2023

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    Headlines – September 6, 2023 juanita hurtado

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Boulder Police Proposes “Reimagine Policing Plan”

The Boulder Police Department has proposed a new policing plan for the city. The “Reimagine Policing Plan” consists of more officers and a holistic approach to addressing crime. 

According to police data, property, and violent crime rates have been escalating over the past years while calls to the department have been declining. With the plan’s shift in policing, Boulder P.D. says in their plan that they want to “reinstate trust in the department.”

They call the shift “problem-solving policing.” About 40% of officer time will be reserved for community interaction with the end goal of reducing crime. Up to fourteen officers will be hired to allow for the increase in community interaction while still having enough officers to police the city.

Boulder P.D. says they will partner with various city departments and other unnamed agencies.

Currently, Boulder Public Safety accounts for one-third of the municipal budget. They will need more money for the plan including money to fund a training academy in partnership with the University of Colorado that will cost around $50,000 to start and $145,000 a year for operating costs.

 

Narcan To Be Available Over the Counter

An overdose reversal drug will be available for over-the-counter purchase on Thursday. 

The drug is called naloxone, but it’s being sold by the trade name Narcan. It can reverse an overdose of street drugs like heroin and fentanyl, as well as prescription drugs like oxycodone.

The Food and Drug Administration approved Narcan for sale earlier this year. Administered as a nasal spray, it went on sale yesterday at select Walgreen drug stores and will be available this month at CVS and Rite-Aid drug stores, as well as at grocery stores and online.

Narcan’s maker, Emergent BioSolutions, said that expanding access to Narcan is critical, due to the opioid epidemic. The company said in a press release that someone dies from an opioid overdose every seven minutes.

Over-the-counter Narcan isn’t cheap: it comes in a two-dose box of four milligrams each, with a recommended price of $44.99.

Nearly 17 million doses of Narcan were distributed in 2021, most of them by local health departments, according to a report by the Reagan-Udall Foundation.

Top High Schools in Colorado Ranked

According to a U.S News & World Report, the top ten Colorado high schools are all located across the front range. Two of those ten schools are public schools. The majority are charter schools.

D’Evelyn Junior/Senior High School in Jefferson County is home to the first-ranked school in the state. Fort Collins claimed the second and third spots with Liberty Common Charter School and Ridgeview Classical Charter School. The rest of the ranking list includes schools in Denver, Thornton, Lafayette, and Colorado Springs. Fairview High School in Boulder was ranked number 9 and the list closes with DSST: Conservatory Green High School in Denver at number 10.

Schools were ranked based on graduation rate, college readiness, AP course availability, and performance on statewide exams.

 

Principal Sues Denver Public Schools

Former McAuliffe principal Kurt Dennis is suing Denver Public Schools for alleged retaliation against him after he interviewed with 9News. 

The interview voiced Dennis’ safety concerns regarding a district policy that required him to pat down a student with an attempted murder charge to check for weapons. Dennis was then fired during a school board meeting with a 6-1 vote.

The contested interview was given directly after the shooting at East High School, where a student injured two deans. The lawsuit says the district didn’t allow Dennis to exercise his free speech and the slandering of his name has prevented him from finding a job. 

Dennis has included Superintendent Alex Marrero and six of the seven school board members in the lawsuit which, according to the Denverite, has not yet been served.

Both Dennis and DPS have been under public scrutiny in recent weeks after police began investigating a seclusion room at McAuliffe High School. Students were allegedly locked inside the room with no way out. Various school board members made public statements bashing Dennis for this incident. Those comments are being cited in the lawsuit.

 

Wild Horse Removal Begins Friday

80 Wild horses have been removed from Rio Blanco in North West Colorado.

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management, or BLM, say the goal is to remove the entire West Douglas Herd,122 horses, from the region via helicopter roundup.  The federal agency announced their plans to remove the horses last Monday. They began the roundup on Friday the 1st and continued over the long holiday weekend. 

The BLM’s helicopter roundups have sparked protests in the past from animal advocates and political leaders. Gov. Jared Polis called the practice– in which the BLM flies a helicopter low to the ground, pushing the horses into corrals– inhumane and wrote a letter last summer pleading with the BLM to halt the practice. 

After capture, the horses will be sent to holding pens in Canon City. The last removal of wild horses in the West Douglas area occurred in 2021 with more than 500 horses. Those horses were also sent to Canon City and suffered from an equine flu outbreak, resulting in a third of the horses dying. 

The BLM say they are removing the horses to “restore the natural ecosystem.” They say the horses are wandering onto privately owned land, eating the food and drinking the water meant for cattle and sheep kept on the lands.

 

Felon Escapes Englewood Prison

Edward Verdugo, a 49-year-old man, escaped from a federal prison camp in Englewood Tuesday morning. 

Officers noticed Verdugo walked away from the facility at 10:30 a.m. 

In 2021, Verdugo was sentenced to nine years in prison by a federal judge in New Mexico after he was caught with possession of heroin and firearms with connection to a drug trafficking crime. Previous to the most recent charges, Verdugo had been convicted of child abuse and posession of a controlled substance. 

Verdugo is described as a 5’6”, 210 pound Hispanic male. Anyone with information should contact the United States Marshals Services.

 

Mother House Rebrands as Haven Ridge

Mother House, a nonprofit committed to helping women, is rebranding as Haven Ridge.   

They will relocate to South Boulder uniting the transitional housing facility and navigation shelter under one roof.

Previously, the nonprofit had two separate locations named Mother House at Haven Ridge and The Lodge at Haven Ridge.

It will continue providing services to women-identifying individuals such as employment counseling, healthcare provider connecting, substance recovery support, and housing counseling. Lisa Sweeney-MirA(mer-RAN)Haven Ridge Executive Director, said the new location will allow for a greater expansion of services to meet community needs. 

To celebrate the rebranding, Haven Ridge is hosting a Neighborhood Block Party on Saturday, October 7. The event will include face painting, live entertainment, and food trucks.

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