Denver's Ferguson Protest Began Peacefully Last Night but Ended in Arrests

Categories: News

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Denver police march on protestors last night.

For a second night, Denver marchers took to the streets as part of a nationwide action in response to the decision of a grand jury in Ferguson, Missouri, not to indict Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot and killed unarmed teenager Michael Brown.

Several hundred people -- a much bigger gathering than the previous night's -- met at Civic Center Park around 6 p.m. and then marched west through the streets of downtown, stopping several times to lie down in intersections in protest before eventually ending up in front of the Denver jail.

See also: You Don't Have to Consider Yourself an Activist to Send a Message in the Streets


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Zen Magnets Continues to Find Positives and Negatives in Challenging the Feds

Categories: News

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Anthony Camera
Shihan Qu
Denver-based Zen Magnets, founded in 2009 by University of Colorado grad Shihan Qu, has been waging an unusual battle against the federal government -- and the Consumer Product Safety Commission, in particular -- over the past two years.

The subject of our October 9, 2014, cover story, "Magnetic Attraction," by Melanie Asmar, the company sells tiny, high-powered spherical magnets that can be used to build everything from complex geometric shapes to replicas of cartoon characters.

See also: Videos: What Are Zen Magnets and Why Is the Federal Government Banning Them?

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The Snitch Who Stole Christmas: How Trinidad's War on Drugs Attacked the Innocent

Categories: News, Politics

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Danika Gonzales was driving to work when she saw the police car in her rearview mirror, swooping down on her. She couldn't think of any moving violation she'd committed, but she quickly pulled over, figuring she was about to get a lecture for not wearing her seat belt.

Except for her college years, Gonzales had lived in Trinidad all of her life. She was 38 years old and had worked for the past seven years as a probation officer for the state courts, so she knew many of the members of the Trinidad Police Department -- including the woman who got out of the patrol car, Officer Lauren Riddle. Gonzales asked her what was going on. Riddle informed her that she was being arrested for selling heroin and methamphetamine.

"I thought she was joking," Gonzales recalls. "I kept telling her, 'You're kidding.' Finally, she got upset with me and said, 'I'm not kidding. Get out of the car.'"

See also: Bloody Ludlow -- Long Buried in Myth and Neglect, the Story of Colorado's Deadly Coal War Is Worth Remembering


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Denver Showed It Had the Light Stuff a Century Ago, With the First Christmas Tree

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This has been a tough year for Colorado history, with the state marking the 150th anniversary of the Sand Creek Massacre on November 29 and the hundredth anniversary of the Ludlow Massacre back in April. But not all anniversaries are dark: A century ago, Denver was the first spot in the world to feature outdoor Christmas lights. Or so the story goes -- and this is just the time of year for prettily tied-up tales.

See also: Nativity Scene Protests Are a Denver Tradition -- Jesus, Mary and Joseph!

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"Vape" Is the Word of the Year in Colorado and for the Oxford Dictionaries

Categories: Marijuana, News

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Photo by Christine Cool
Vaping in Denver in early 2014.
It's become a common sight in Colorado -- at Broncos games, in movie theaters and malls, in the bathrooms at bars and clubs, even behind high schools and in employee parking lots. People will quickly, slyly grab a device from their pocket that looks like a pen and put it to their mouth. Then, after just a tiny puff and the mere hint of the smell of pot or cigarette smoke, they'll put the device -- which doesn't get hot -- back into their pocket and go back to whatever they were doing.

The use of vape pens and e-cigarettes has been common for a while, but it caught on big in 2014 after recreational marijuana became legal in Colorado at the beginning of the year. So big, in fact, that Oxford Dictionaries chose "vape" as its word of the year for 2014.

See also: Dear Stoner: How do vaporizers and vape pens differ?

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Ferguson Protest Tonight at Civic Center Park Seeks Peace, Not Violence

Categories: News

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A photo shared by Jo Cusick that's being used as the event image for this evening's protest. Additional pics, plus videos and more below.
Last night, as we've reported, protests in Denver following the decision of a grand jury in Ferguson, Missouri not to indict a police officer who shot and killed unarmed teenager Michael Brown were peaceful -- and that's the plan for another gathering, planned for Civic Center Park this evening. Continue for details about last night's event and the one to come, featuring photos, videos and more.

See also: Twenty Colorado Police Agencies That Arrest the Most Black People by Population

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See Denver Cop Punch Suspect Six Times in Face, Trip Pregnant Woman

Categories: News

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A screen capture from footage obtained by Fox31. More images and a video below.
The Denver Police Department didn't need this. On an evening of largely peaceful protest in the Mile High City after a Ferguson, Missouri grand jury's failure to indict a police officer who shot and killed unarmed teenager Michael Brown, video has surfaced in which a Denver cop can be repeatedly punching a drug suspect in the head, as well as tripping a woman said to have been seven-and-a-half months pregnant. Details and the video below. But first, a warning: The images may disturb some readers.

See also: Videos: Inmate Slammed Into Wall by Deputy Sues Denver for $5 Million

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Roan Plateau Compromise Hailed as "The Colorado Way"

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Six years after the drill-baby-drill crusaders of the Bush administration targeted one of Colorado's most ecologically unique places for widespread energy leases, a surprisingly reasonable compromise has been hammered out over the fate of the Roan Plateau. The deal is being praised by state and federal officials as well as environmental and sportsmen groups -- and at least tolerated by oil-and-gas interests as a viable alternative to what had become a protracted and seemingly hopeless legal deadlock.

The lesson here? Fiats from Washington that fail to take into account community concerns about long-term economic and environmental impacts are bound to breed lawsuits and impasse. It takes some local buy-in to get to what Governor John Hickenlooper describes as "a productive path forward.... It really is the Colorado way."

See also: Roan Plateau Rethinking: Drilling Delay Prompts Pouting, Applause

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Sox Place, a Day Shelter for Youth, Has a New Home -- Its Old One

Categories: News

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Photo by Kristin Pazulski
Doyle Robinson is back where Sox Place started.
Doyle Robinson has run Sox Place, a downtown daytime shelter for youth, for more than a decade; during that time, he's seen the nonprofit's rent skyrocket as the area became more and more popular. For more than two years, Sox Place was on a month-to-month lease at 2017 Larimer Street while Robinson scouted for a new spot. This summer, he finally found one: Sox Place's original home at 2017 Lawrence Street.

See also: Sox Place Moving Out at the End of May, Ginn Mill Project Moving In

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Denver Cops Shoot Two in Commerce City After Failed Traffic Stop

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Photos from the scene courtesy of 7News. More images below.
The murder at Aurora's Bronco Bar wasn't the only example of gunfire in the metro area last night. Two people were also shot in Commerce City -- and the individuals behind the triggers were Denver police officers.

Continue for details about the incident, which flowed from a failed traffic stop.

See also: Update: Jahvell Forrest Busted in Shooting of Aurora Cop Ryan Burns

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