James Holmes case exploited on Facebook by district attorney candidate?

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This week's cover story, "Lethal Election," reports on one of the most keenly fought local contests in Colorado this fall, the race for district attorney in the state's largest judicial district. Since Carol Chambers is term-limited, the winner in the 18th District (which includes Arapahoe, Douglas, Elbert and Lincoln counties) will be the first outsider to take over that office in decades -- and will have to decide whether to pursue the death penalty for suspect James Holmes in the Aurora theater shootings.

Democrat Ethan Feldman and Republican George Brauchler have both stated their support of the death penalty in principle while declining to say what they'd do specifically in the Holmes case, deferring to the current prosecution team and a gag order. But a mention of the case on the Brauchler campaign's Facebook page has drawn ire from the Feldman camp. A former county judge and deputy DA, Feldman claims that Brauchler is "exploiting" the case for political gain.

Brauchler, a former Jefferson County and military prosecutor, has since taken down the comment Feldman found objectionable. Here's a screen capture showing what the hubbub was about:

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Feldman takes issue not with the link to a news article dealing with the DA's race and what it might mean for the Holmes prosecution, but with the comment from "George Brauchler for DA" declaring that "George, we need you in office now!" -- implying, in Feldman's view, that Brauchler believes he's the clear choice for the job of convicting Holmes. He notes that Brauchler removed the comment from his Facebook page after Feldman brought it up at one of their many debate forums.

"I mentioned it as a defect in his judgment -- that he was politicizing the case," Feldman says. "It was inept, too. It appears that he posted the comment himself."

Brauchler responds that he posted the link to the Washington Times article but didn't post the comment below it. He doesn't know who did, he adds, and doesn't know how a comment from a supporter ended up being credited to him. "I pride myself on being a technology guy, but Facebook baffles me sometimes," he says. "It was such a vague comment. It certainly didn't come from me, and I deleted it."

The Republican candidate adds that he's made a point of "treading lightly" in any public discussion of the Holmes case but expects the focus in the race to remain on the case, for obvious reasons. "When you're talking about setting into motion the greatest sanction that a prosecutor can invoke, the death penalty, everything becomes hyper-scrutinized," he says.

Even an enthusiastic comment on a Facebook page.

More from our Aurora Theater Shooting archive: "James Holmes case: Prosecutors given access to his school application, police records."

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15 comments
dcCU
dcCU

hmmm this Brauchler sounds like a scary dude...Santa Klaus is watching you Brauchler...be a good boy now...

dcCU
dcCU

Mixing professional with personal on a social website is despicable especially for a person in the justice system. people have been fired or not hired for posts made on FaceBook. however it seems the populace of CO didnt care much, maybe they were too stoned and had more concern about legalizing marijuana for recreational use. and doesnt it just take a course in ROTC and a bachelors degree to go into the military as an Lieutenat Colonel? however I have hope and am a person of faith that Brauchler will WAKE UP and be more discerning in his actions and comments since the voters have elected him to such a prestigious position.

Phil
Phil

As a member of law enforcement, let me tell you something Mr. Kory. Every police officer is not voting for Brauchler. We’re just telling your peeps that so that you will get off our backs.

 

Regarding the military experience you claim Brauchler holds – have your comments been approved by the Military Office of Public Affairs? I didn’t think so.  We understand there is a military case developing where the military is reviewing everything you are putting out in the media on behalf of Brauchler. I guess Brauchler thought he found a way to sidestep the Department of Defense Directive 1344.10 regarding “Political Activities by Members of the Armed Forces and the Hatch Act by having you post embellished military career accomplishments. Someone was wrong in that assumption.

 

Regarding those young attorneys you imply want Brauchler as a DA? Actually, they prefer Ethan Feldman. I don’t know of a single young attorney that wants to work for Brauchler, unless he has promised them a job, as in Martin, Heidemann, etc. Do you? Name a half dozen, and I will provide the names of a dozen who don’t want to work for Brauchler.

 

The endorsement from Sheriff Grayson Robinson must tick Brauchler off greatly; he asked for Robinson’s endorsement and did not get it. I don’t perceive Sheriff Robinson as a man who has anything or anyone to be afraid of. It’s also telling that Scott Storey, Brauchler’s former boss in Jeffco (where Brauchler last practiced as a civilian prosecutor in 2006) and a prominent Republican himself, refused to endorse Brauchler. There seems to be a trend here - and the common denominator is that people that have worked with Brauchler don’t like or want him.

 

The other police associations you refer to in your daily diatribe align Brauchler with union activity –and Brauchler is running as a Republican. Alas, Brauchler has accepted monies with his dirty hands from the unions.

 

Regarding the leader of Aurora – the Sheriff takes the law enforcement lead here. The role of the Mayor truly focuses on other leadership duties.

 

Did you watch last Monday’s Bronco football game? Wake up Wizard. Feldman IS Manning. Your team is watching the carefully crafted and brilliantly executed campaign of an extremely gifted and seasoned candidate, Ethan Feldman.

 

korynparker
korynparker

The fact is - Party DOES matter! Feldman tries desperately to run away from his Dem party affiliations every chance he gets, stating that "there is no GOP prosecutor play book, and there is no DEM prosecutor play book". But the truth is that the Democrat controlled State Assembly attempted to pass a bill to eliminate the Death Penalty in Colorado - it failed by one vote! If you examine the 9news.com interview of both men, anyone would see that George's professionalism is extremely sharpe! He can't help it if the community is understanding what Feldman supporters are denying - we feel more comfortable with a Republican as DA to control serious criminal prosecutions like Holmes.

ReganB
ReganB

This is what happens when you let people run your FB page -who shouldn't be.

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

Are either candidates sporting a bigger pair than Chambers ?

Or , is that even possible ?

JasonR
JasonR

This is pretty shocking and disturbing.  Someone running for office should be really careful and I’m not impressed by Mr. Brauchler’s response saying he didn’t know how it happened. Whether the actual comment is a big deal or not, I think it shows a general lack of tact by Mr. Brauchler.  I hadn’t given this race much thought yet, I was going to do my research this weekend but this helps to steer me in the right direction.  Let this serve as a warning about the use of social media and the implications that it can have when used incorrectly.  Mistakes happen and when they do the best option is to own up to them, especially if you’re running for an office where you represent the public.

Christen
Christen

I haven't been impressed with Brauchler from day one - and I'm a Republican! I thought the article yesterday was great, it really highlighted the differences between the two candidates.  I find it absurd that Brauchler would even post an article about this on his page, let alone comment on it himself.  Whether it was an oversight by him or not, maybe he just shouldn't have put anything about the case on his page at all. He talks about how he is some technology expert but he lets this happen? And for him to not even own up to it is unacceptable.  It's honestly just one more thing to add to the list of issues that people seem to have with Brauchler. The majority of things I've heard about him from various people have been negative, which says a lot.  Republican or not, I am NOT voting for this guy.  I have heard from MANY Republicans that they won't vote for him either, I see why!  My friend who has never voted Democrat in his whole life has a Feldman sign in his front yard...pretty telling!

dcCU
dcCU

post thought...its probably just a Lieutenant with ROTC and Bachelors degree. but a colonel? apologies for that I will check your credentials more thoroughly. was just throwing in bc Ive gleaned a few articles that say Brauchler's military experiences have been puffed up. However since he has an military attache I wonder, has he ever been on a battlefield? if so, does he remember the smell of blood spilled on the grounds, and the horror of the sounds? if so, I wonder if he would change his mind on the death penalty then. The death penalty doesnt stop someone intent on committing an heinous act. I wonder if he is Christian? I still have such a hard time reconciling how anybody can be for the death penalty esp when they claim to be Christian. didnt Jesus say turn the other cheek? maybe some think he said put others on the cross too.such hypocritical actions in our states.Blessed is the day we have a Supreme Court Judge that abolishes the death penalty!

tyrannynews
tyrannynews

 @Phil  - This is going to sound like I'm attacking you personally, but it's more of a criticism of our society.

 

You use the word "member" of law enforcement...which begs the question, do you think of law enforcement as a club or subset of society? I definitely believe law enforcement in America is borderline worse than just openly ruling as a brutal kingdom.

 

The race between these 2 candidates in some ways is pointless, as the winner has been selected. You know what I mean, if you consider the Holmes case and how sensitive it is to certain "leaders." One candidate is preferred by the system, and I don't know which that is.

 

I noted a distinct use of the "Mr. Kory" moniker, which I suspect reflects your opinion of the poster. When law enforcement has a negative opinion of someone in the course of business, they become their lord and master. But that isn't actually the case, despite it looking that way in most appearances. After all, it's their face that's crushed and their money confiscated or otherwise lost to them.

 

In truth, the "leaders" and "authorities" face the greatest loss at certain times in a society. When the awareness rises because prosperity has dropped, society remembers again the purpose of life; which is partly to learn the truth. The truth doesn't care about a brilliantly executed campaign, so long as it's truthful.

 

It will be tough on the authorities soon, since whole departments of government, especially the FBI, GAO, DEA, CIA, IRS, DHS and offices of Attorney's General will be discharged or at least upturned and current staff won't desire to undergo the new candidate process. These people will face an internal crisis, I expect. Some will huddle together in clubs or form unions to amass their power and hope to force their way into employment in a related field.

 

It's too bad, since at that point I would likely split from any associations and look within myself to hopefully learn how meaningless I am. It doesn't take a hero to put on a uniform. More importantly. those who expect to be heroes despite not wearing the uniform, in the end are still privileged in the eyes of the system, the violent monopoly.

 

Reminds me of David Morales, of the RFK killing fame (was there supervising). He is claimed to say basically, when you open the door and someone's there you kill them. Bam. That is the plan of a fool, an essential psychopath.

 

Anyway, I hope you get into something that is more uplifting in your next career move. I just police myself and try to do good things for people. But, it isn't very effective against the state, since nobody seems to see the con their running on us and on themselves. Later.

michael.roberts
michael.roberts moderator editortopcommenter

 @Phil Interesting post, Phil. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Christen
Christen

 @korynparker As a Republican I totally disagree!  I would rather have the most qualified candidate which is Feldman.  How dare your politicize this case by bringing up the death penalty in the context of (D) and (R), have some tact! One of the many reasons why Feldman has so much support is because he is NOT making this about politics.  Your post if offensive to Republicans, we actually look at the issues and make an informed decision!  I don't want to be categorized with you and your off-based comments! I am a lifelong Republican who is voting Dem on this one and I'm proud of it! I think my response to your post below says it all.

korynparker
korynparker

@Christen I would recommend that you talk to your local cop or deputy sheriff - as the experts understand the difference, and they support George. It was these law enforcement officers who asked George to run in the first p,ace, as his energy and recent prosecutorial experience with sharpened military leadership skills that make him so attractive. Many Dems have told me they are voting for George because they are so impressed by him. Feldman earned his retirement, let him enjoy it and support an Iraqi veteran rather than giving another government paycheck to someone who hasn't done this type of specialized work since 1980!

Christen
Christen

@korynparker Well since you bring it up, I sent this to my friend who IS a cop in Douglas County. He hadn't seen this article yet and he was disturbed by what Mr. Brauchler did.  Ironically he told me just the opposite of what you said.  He told me that Brauchler has LOST a lot of respect within their law enforcement circle and that he only knows of a few people that are actually voting from Brauchler (some woman who works at the Sheriff's office and some of her followers).  He told me that Brauchler got a few of these "endorsements" in the primary because generally law enforcement didn't want to see his primary opponent win. My friend is a Republican and said many of his law enforcement friends are as well, but they are all voting for Feldman. The Sheriff of Arapahoe County is also crossing party lines to support Feldman.  By the way, korynparker, you need to work on your approach.  You are mean and your response to me was like you are talking to a little kid! I also think your comment about Feldman is totally out of line, have some respect.  But I want to thank you for inspiring me to volunteer for the Feldman campaign! I am going to pick up my yard sign today and I'm joining them for some sign waving next week.  I knew I was going to vote for Feldman but now that I hear how many people in law enforcement are pulling for him too, I feel the need to get more involved to help Feldman win. When looking at the two candidates there really isn't a comparison, Feldman is so much more qualified and the endorsement list I saw on his website says it all!  I looked through it and I know so many people on it (and know that they are Republicans).  I only wish I would have gotten involved earlier.

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