Year in Review: The 2013 Hall of Shame, part two
Every year, we bring you the best examples of the worst behavior that we can find from the past 365 days of news stories. And from secessionists to bigoted bakers to Tom Martino and Mother Nature, there was plenty of shame and shmuckery to go around in this year's Hall of Shame.
We selected the ten most egregious offenders of common decency for your reading pleasure, and served up the first five Hall of Shamers yesterday. Here are the rest.
Matt Russell and Tom Heckert
The Denver Broncos weren't supposed to have a rocky off-season between Peyton Manning's first and second year here. Sure, the pathetic loss to the Baltimore Ravens in the first playoff game of Number 18's era was disheartening, but it was surmountable. As was the loss of Elvis Dumervil during Faxgate. But then came the drama over star linebacker Von Miller, who ended up being suspended for six games for a variety of pot-related infractions. And following that: the arrests of not one but two front-office executives (close advisors to executive vice president John Elway), both accused of driving drunk. Matt Russell was the first to have his case become public -- and the most egregious scofflaw, as well. The director of player personnel was booked on July 6 after police said he hit two other vehicles in Breckenridge, including a police car, and injured an officer. Russell, who was celebrating the big 4-0, registered a 0.246 percent blood alcohol content, which is normal for most fans at a game, but three times higher than the legal limit for driving. Tom Heckert, meanwhile, had been popped on June 11 in Parker, registering a high blood alcohol content. The former Philadelphia Eagles and Cleveland Browns exec had only just been hired as director of pro personnel by the team in May. Both men were suspended without pay in July -- Russell indefinitely and Heckert for one month -- and asked to get treatment. The team had kept Heckert's arrest quiet until after the story about Russell broke. Team officials later apologized, but denied that they had a problem with drinking culture in the front office.
Memorial-crashing gun activists
Brandon Marshall Tom Tancredo
Coloradans love their guns -- more than life itself, it often seems. That ethos was on display loud and clear in July when the Rocky Mountain Gun Owners and other pro-gun groups decided to crash a one-year memorial for the victims of the Aurora theater shootings by reminding everyone how great guns are. One gun-rights activist told the Denver Post that some of the members of her group planned to bring sympathy cards and that she wanted people to see that "gun owners are not all bad, crazy people, and we do care even though we oppose the legislation that has passed." Perhaps there would have been a better way to do that, however, than to show up at a memorial for the families and friends of people who were injured and killed in a gun massacre. Granted, the memorial also served as a platform for members of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, who read off the names of thousands of gun-violence victims from across the country, including the students killed at Sandy Hook. But it was still a poor choice.