JonBenet Ramsey, DNA and the Phantom of Heilbronn

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Television shows like CSI have given us, the channel-surfing American public, an almost mystical faith in the crime-solving abilities of DNA. We expect the presence of foreign DNA in the victim's bite wound to nail the perp, and the absence of any traces of the stuff to help absolve the innocent. That seems to have been the reasoning, anyway, behind Boulder District Attorney Mary Lacy's startling 2008 "exoneration" of John and Patsy Ramsey, declaring their lack of any involvement in the still-unsolved 1996 murder of their six-year-old daughter, JonBenet; the presence of an unknown male's DNA in the girl's underwear points to an intruder as the killer, Lacy said.

See also: JonBenet Ramsey: How the Investigation Got Derailed -- And Why It Still Matters

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Cody Powell: 40 Years For Shooting Cop When He Was "F*cking My Sh*t Up"

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Cody Powell in court, as seen in 7News coverage. Photos, video and more below.
This past March, Loveland Police Officer Garret Osilka was shot and seriously wounded during a routine traffic stop. Cody Powell was busted for the crime, and he's now received a forty-year sentence -- one not long enough for many of Osilka's colleagues. Photos, videos and more below.

See also: Garret Osilka Update: Cody Powell Busted in Shooting of Loveland Police Officer, published on March 5

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JonBenet Ramsey and the Rise of an Internet Subculture

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JonBenet Ramsey. More images below.
This week's cover story, "The Coldest Case," looks back at the still-unsolved 1996 murder of six-year-old JonBenet Ramsey -- and the long, lonely battle waged by Fleet and Priscilla White, former friends of the Ramseys, to learn how the investigation got so badly derailed. The case had a devastating impact on many folks who were drawn into it. But it's also worth noting that the hunt for JonBenet's killer became a matter of consuming interest for a lot of people who never set foot in Boulder.

See also: JonBenet Ramsey: How the Investigation Got Derailed -- and Why It Still Matters

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Gregory Kilcollins Update: Accused "I'm Gonna F*k Da World" Shooter Busted

Categories: Colorado Crimes

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A photo of Gregory Kilcollins from a subsequently deleted Facebook page. More images below.
Update: As we noted in a December 12 post, Gregory Kilcollins's Facebook profile photo featured him wearing a hat whose inner brim is emblazoned with the term muerte, the Spanish word for death.

Two days later, witnesses say Kilcollins shot up an apartment complex, seriously injuring one man in the process -- and he's now been captured after the better part of a week on the loose Continue for a video, details and more photos and content from that Facebook page, which has now been deleted.

See also: Furmen Leyba Wanted in Triple Murder, One Suspect Busted After Chase (23-25)

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Alysia Lombard, Mario Hollerway: Child Abuse Bust After Vomiting Child Tests Positive for Pot

Categories: Colorado Crimes

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Alysia Lombard. Additional photos and a video below.
In recent months, officials and marijuana activists alike have been calling for cannabis users to make sure their stash isn't accessible to children. Alysia Lombard and Mario Hollerway are accused of ignoring that advice and a lot more in relation to their three-year-old daughter, who tested positive for THC after vomiting at an area hospital. The story also includes cannabutter, expired red cards and a T-shirt of crack cocaine. Continue for photos, video, details and more.

See also: Marijuana Cultivation Leads to Child Abuse Charges: New Way to Target Home Grows?, published in July 2010

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JonBenet Ramsey: How the Investigation Got Derailed -- and Why It Still Matters

Categories: Colorado Crimes

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Brian Stauffer
Bad news often comes in the night. It arrives in a whirl of dread and confusion, like a drunk trying to get into the wrong house, shattering the pre-dawn silence and bursting our dreams.

When Priscilla White answered the phone at her Boulder home at six in the morning on December 26, 1996, she knew that something terrible had happened. Why else would anyone be calling so early, the day after Christmas? But the news was worse than anything she could imagine.

The voice on the line belonged to a frantic Patsy Ramsey. "JonBenét's been kidnapped," she said. "Come over right now. Call the FBI."

She hung up before the stunned Priscilla could say much of anything.

Priscilla and her husband, Fleet White Jr., had been with John and Patsy Ramsey just ten hours earlier. The Ramseys and their two children had come to the Whites' house for Christmas dinner. Nine-year-old Burke Ramsey had played Nintendo games with seven-year-old Fleet III, while best friends JonBenét and Daphne White, both six, had played in Daphne's room. There had been nothing remarkable about the evening, but now the Ramseys were making desperate calls for help.

See also: Westword's JonBenet Ramsey Archive

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Stephen Graves, Man Living in Yard House Ceiling: Multiple Wine Corks

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Stephen Graves. Photos, a video and more below.
Last week, Mark Antonation at our Cafe Society blog told you about a man who'd been living in the ceiling of the downtown Yard House becoming trapped in a wall amid flooding that forced the restaurant to temporarily close. Now, that man, Stephen Graves, has been formally charged with several crimes. Continue for photos, video and details from the police report, which offers several clues about what Graves was doing in there: multiple wine corks.

See also: Man Living in the Ceiling of the Yard House Downtown Becomes Trapped in Wall

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Leeann Najera Dies in Crash While Chasing Men Who Stole Her Kids' Game System

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A Facebook photo of Leann Najera. Additional photos and a video below.
At first, police thought the fatal crash that took place near West Harvard Avenue and South Hazel Court had come as a result of a street race like the one that killed Regis University student Rachel Neiman within recent weeks. But family members of the victim, young mom Leann Najera, say she died pursuing men who'd stolen numerous items from her home, including her kids' game system. Photos, video and details below.

See also: William Chicano, David Felan Charged in Fatal Street Race That Killed Rachel Neiman

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Justin Hale: Boyfriend Acquitted of Murder in One-Year-Old's Death

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Update below: Some deaths are so brutal, so shocking to the public conscience, that they seem to cry out for retribution. That seemed to be the case in the fatal trauma suffered by thirteen-month-old Brookelynn Palmer, whose head injuries were so severe that prosecutors maintained she must have been swung with tremendous force by her mother's boyfriend, Justin Hale.

As we reported last year, Hale was facing a possible life in prison on charges of first-degree murder and reckless child abuse resulting in death. But last month, after an eight-day trial, it took a Jefferson County jury barely more than an hour to find him not guilty on all counts. The case against him had a particularly revealing and disturbing flaw -- a pre-existing injury that may have contributed to Brookelynn's death and was missed by several medical professionals involved in her treatment.

See also: Justin Hale Charged With Murdering Girlfriend's 13-Month-Old Baby

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Do You Recognize Man Accused of Harassing and Fondling CU-Boulder Female Students?

Categories: Colorado Crimes

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A sketch of the suspect. Photos, a video and more below.
Female students at CU-Boulder are on alert this morning over disturbing reports about a man who's been fondling and harassing women near one of the most traveled spots on the campus. Continue for photos, video, a larger version of the sketch above.

See also: Gun-Free CU-Boulder Dorms are Target Areas for Criminals, Student Group Says, published in September 2012

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