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Local News

  • Ready for their first collar

    The Jeffco Sheriff’s Office welcomed three new members to its ranks in a ceremony last week. And all three new deputies received vigorous head rubs and ear scratches.

    The three canines, introduced March 19, are named Thorn, Bigi and Klaus. All three were trained in Florida and have been bonding with their human partners since being brought to Colorado several weeks ago.

  • Littleton’s Kempe has challenger for seat on IREA board

    Two foothills-area directors of the Intermountain Rural Electric Association are up for re-election, and both are banking on their experience on the power co-op’s board to help them retain their seats.

    Littleton resident Mike Kempe represents an area from Aspen Park east to Castle Pines and down to Roxborough. Kempe is opposed by Morrison resident Gregory Edwin Lee Sanchez.

  • Judge approves supervised trips for Deer Creek gunman

    Bruco Eastwood, the gunman who shot two students at Deer Creek Middle School in 2010, will be allowed to leave the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo for limited supervised trips after a judge’s ruling last week.

    The request was made by doctors at the state hospital as part of Eastwood’s treatment for schizophrenia. The trips would occur once or twice a week with other patients from the hospital and under the supervision of medical staff.

  • Cemetery working to get Mount Lindo cross back in lights

    The company that owns Mount Lindo Cemetery off U.S. 285 hopes to have its giant cross shining without interruption by the fall.

    The lights on the 400-foot-high cross have been off intermittently since September due to weather, age and, oddly, bullets, said Gill Giddens, general manager of Olinger Mount Lindo Cemetery.

    “There’s been lightning strikes up there, just normal weather issues, blizzards and everything else,” Giddens said.

  • Bus driver faces charges in altercation with student

    A Jeffco Public Schools bus driver who is accused of grabbing a disruptive 12-year-old by his throat on his bus Jan. 30 will face child abuse charges in county court next month.

    David Blanchard, a 63-year-old Littleton resident, will face two counts of misdemeanor child abuse March 23 in Jefferson County Court. 

    Blanchard was picking students up from Bear Creek K-8 at 3 p.m. Jan. 30 when a 12-year-old male student allegedly became disruptive, according to Lakewood police spokesman Steve Davis.

  • Commissioners OK rezoning for self-storage center

    A zoning change to allow construction of a self-storage center on West Belleview Avenue just west of South Simms Street was approved Jan. 27 by Jeffco’s county commissioners.

    Commissioners Casey Tighe and Don Rosier voted to add a storage center to allowable uses for the 2.56-acre property under planned development zoning. The plan for the property, which is just west of a Comfort Dental and Walgreens, is for a 50,000-square-foot center with 460 storage units.

  • Jeffco commissioners eye targeted raises to slow attrition

    Jeffco’s county commissioners are considering awarding targeted pay increases as a way to stop, or at least slow, an increase in employee attrition.

    The commissioners discussed spending $1.5 million annually to target certain areas in the county workforce during two days of staff briefings last week on Jeffco’s proposed 2015 budget. County employees are already in line for a 2 percent merit-pay increase next year.

  • Body of missing Littleton woman found in Gunnison National Forest

    Police in Mount Crested Butte say that human remains found in the Gunnison National Forest are those of Sherri Ahlbrandt, a Littleton woman missing in the area since Aug. 13

    A search party on Oct. 29 found the remains in a rugged area called Middle Anthracite Creek, close to where hunters on Oct. 23 found items identified as belonging to Ahlbrandt, said Marjorie Trautman, a spokeswoman for the Mount Crested Butte police.

  • CSI: Jeffco

    Sometimes a cop needs a microscope to catch a criminal.

    The Jeffco Sheriff’s Office opened the new regional crime lab for a tour last week. The new facility, part of an expansion of the jail, will give law enforcement access to some of the most cutting-edge scientific equipment available.  

  • Jeffco jail in line for security upgrade after escape

    The Jeffco jail is getting a security upgrade after its first prisoner escape since it was built 28 years ago. 

    The county commissioners have given initial approval to a project that will install metal bars on the jail’s five recreation yards. The bars will supplement the steel security meshing that is currently in place. 

    The project is estimated to cost $100,000, and the funds will come from a surplus from the current jail expansion, which is about $1 million under budget. That project is about a month away from completion.