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Updated: 19 min 40 sec ago

Broncos Mailbag: Are Denver’s inside linebackers not up to task stopping run?

1 hour 18 min ago

Denver Post Broncos writer Ryan O’Halloran posts his Broncos Mailbag weekly during the season.

You can pose a Broncos- or NFL-related question for the Broncos Mailbag here. Follow Ryan for more daily updates on Twitter.

It seems that a big problem with stopping the run is the linebacker play. Brandon Marshall is too small and Todd Davis is too slow. Is Alexander Johnson ready to jump in and help out? He’s bigger and more athletic than the guys we have now. Could we see him paired up with Josey Jewell to form a more dynamic duo?

— Richard Cozzette, Canon City

Hey Richard, I had to Google where Canon City is and now I know (southwest of Colorado Springs for those of you at home). Good question about the run defense. It jumped out on tape against the Rams how Marshall and Davis struggled to get off some blocks. But that may have been due to the Broncos’ game plan to play “shell” coverage downfield, taking one safety out of the box and putting more weight on Marshall and Davis. Jewell is definitely in their plans and he is a part of the rotation at inside linebacker. Johnson is serving a redshirt year. He does look the part of a 3-4 inside linebacker but his chance this year will only come because of injury. Johnson has been a healthy scratch for all seven games.

Why do our inside linebackers not get more blame for what is going on with the running game. They both over-pursue on stretch runs, then try to reach back and make contact 6-7 yards downfield. Seriously, when was the last time you saw one of them fill a gap at the line of scrimmage or behind it. It doesn’t matter how many tackles a player makes as much as where they make them; especially LBs. As for covering a tight end down the seam, or in a trail position forget it! Same with running backs running “wheel routes.” Bench them both, have Josey Jewell play MLB and Bradley Chubb (or Shane Ray and have Chubb with hand in the dirt), and Von Miller flopping between SLB and WLB depending on formations. Can this type of 4-3 be any worse than what we are seeing?

— John H., Port St. Lucie, Fla.

John and Richard must have been trading emails about the Broncos’ inside linebackers. Yes, a lot of Broncos against the Jets and Rams would over-pursue or not stay in their gap and were left with “reaching” for the tackle. That rarely works. Your idea about how to line up Chubb and Miller at linebacker is a though I’ve had … for 2019 and if a new staff switches to a 4-3 front.

What moves do you foresee the Broncos making before the trade deadline? There are so many holes on this roster from the secondary to the offensive line, what do you think they need to tackle first?

— Karl, Salt Lake City

Predicting what an NFL team will do at the trade deadline is nearly impossible because it’s like the other sports where Trade Deadline Day is a holiday full of trades, which were preceded by weeks of chatter. I make up the Broncos’ Wish List with an eye toward 2019: A No. 2 cornerback, rush linebacker depth and anything along the offensive line. It would be great to see them pursue Arizona cornerback Patrick Peterson, but I doubt the Broncos are willing to give up a Day 2 draft pick for him.

There are a lot of things to complain with this Broncos team. And unlike many fans, I’m not going the knee jerk way of screaming for firings (which never help in the midst of a season). But what’s bothering me as much as anything is how this team’s philosophies feel so outdated. The Broncos used to be known for vanguard offensive schemes. Even with Josh McDaniels, he was trying to push concepts forward. He didn’t, but at least he tried. Seeing this squad against the likes of the Chiefs and the Rams made the offense feel like the stone age versus the industrial age. It makes me wonder, why are John Elway and Vance Joseph so comfortable with the past? Shouldn’t they be pushing for the future?

— Robert, Houston

Interesting take on the Broncos’ offensive uniqueness compared to the Rams and Chiefs. It’s not in the same ball park, but that said, the Broncos don’t have the offensive pieces that those teams have. Bill Musgrave will mix up his formations and put running backs out wide and tight ends in the slot and whatnot. If this season falls apart and a coaching change is made, finding the Next Great Offensive Mind should be at the top of the list.

Hey Ryan, great win for the good guys last Thursday, but I have a question: Where was Chad Kelly? Why did Vance Joseph leave Case Keenum in there in the fourth quarter when the game was well in hand? I’d rather not have our No. 1 quarterback be at risk for an injury.

— Kyle G., Thornton

Joseph explained that last Friday when he said he wanted to finish the game strong. You didn’t want to see Keenum get injured but many of the fans just wanted to see Kelly play so he could ignite a quarterback competition. I didn’t have a problem with Keenum staying in the game because he was just handing off anyway.

What’s the good word on Su’a Cravens? Is he going to make his Broncos debut come Week 9?

— Mike T., Fort Collins

Cravens is eligible to come off injured reserve in time for the Week 9 Houston game. He had knee surgery after the preseason and I would expect him to be available to face the Texans if he has two good weeks of practice.

Hey Ryan, I love your work. Not a Broncos question, but I know you used to cover the Jaguars. What’s happening in Jacksonville? They look awful.

— James, Denver

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Thanks James. It’s hard to believe the Jaguars and Broncos have identical 3-4 records considering the preseason expectations for both teams and that the Jaguars were 3-1. Injuries have disabled the offense (they’re on their third left tackle and third tight end), but the defense isn’t creating any takeaways. They are a front-running team – they are built to get a lead and pound their opponent.

Has there been any discussion of using Gary Kubiak as the interim offensive coordinator? It would be less demanding that being the head coach. Bill Musgrave hasn’t shown he’s up to the challenge of calling plays … the Broncos have too much talent to be so mediocre on offense.

— Michael Reiter, Buena Vista

I don’t expect Kubiak to join the coaching staff in that kind of role. He’s a popular choice to be the interim coach if Joseph doesn’t make it to the finish line but we’re not sure Kubiak would even agree to do that. Kubiak is involved behind the scenes, though, consulting the offensive staff.

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WWE star Roman Reigns announces he has leukemia

1 hour 50 min ago

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — WWE wrestler Roman Reigns says he will step away from the ring because he has leukemia.

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The 33-year-old Reigns, whose real name is Joe Anoa’i, made the announcement Monday night to open the episode of “Raw.”

He was originally diagnosed in 2008 at age 22, though he quickly went into remission. He’s been fighting the disease since.

Anoa’i, who played football at Georgia Tech, has appeared in the last four main events at WrestleMania. The WWE’s universal champion said during the announcement that he plans on returning to the ring when he gets healthy.

“Reigns is taking his battle with leukemia public in an effort to raise awareness and funds for research in order to advance cures for the disease,” WWE said in a statement.

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Slight chance for rain and thunderstorms in Denver, snow possible in mountains

2 hours 56 min ago

It will get breezy with a 10 percent chance for rain showers in the Denver metro area on Tuesday, meteorologists say.

The high temperature on this partly cloudy day is expected to be around 64 degrees, according to the National Weather Service in Boulder.

The mountains could get between 1 and 4 inches of snow, the NWS says.

Rain and snow increase tonight for areas along and South of I-70 above 10,000 ft. 1-4 inches possible by early Wednesday. Dry on the plains

— NWS Boulder (@NWSBoulder) October 23, 2018

Southwesterly winds could gust as high as 21 degrees. Sporadic rains are possible through the night. The low temperature will be around 43 degrees.

Sunny skies are expected Thursday through Monday, with high temperatures in the mid-to-upper 60s, the weather service says.

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Whole Foods partners with Denver producer on another gluten-free product: sake

3 hours 18 min ago

Denver sake brewery Colorado Sake Co. is working with a powerful partner in its efforts to get it rice-based boozy beverage out to the masses: Whole Foods Market.

Starting Oct. 31, the Whole Foods Market Wine & Spirits store at 2315 30th St. in Boulder will carry the brewer’s flagship “American Standard” and “Horchata Nigori” sake varieties.

It is the only retail distribution contract the tiny River North Art District-based operation has signed so far.

The business, which sells to a handful of local restaurants, was founded in 2016, before Colorado had clear rules governing sales of the traditional Japanese spirit made of rice, water, yeast and koji. After a change to state law, the company opened a tasting room — open 4-10 p.m. Thursday through Saturday — off the alley behind its 3559 Larimer St. brewing space this summer.

With Whole Foods on board, its got its sights set higher.

“We’re a local company with national expectations,” Colleen Eager, Colorado Sake’s Co.’s head of business development, said. “Sake is an emerging sector and, of course, domestic sake is even more new so our goal is really to just get people to try it and introduce them to the brand. We know that Whole Foods team members in particular are going to take the time to get to know it.”

Eager is a former Whole Foods marketing staffer. The Colorado Sake Co. partnership was struck through Whole Foods’ local products program, an outlet for local natural goods makers that has landed products from more than 550 Colorado businesses on the specialty grocers’ shelves, company officials say. Of those, more than 300 produce alcohol, and around 200 of those are brewers. Now, one makes sake.

“I think people are going to be really excited to be able to purchase something like this,” said Darcy Landis, a Whole Foods local products “forager” who is working with Colorado Sake Co. “There’s no gluten. It’s not going to get you a little too tipsy before you are done making dinner. It’s kind of the perfect Colorado alcohol.”

The Amazon-owned grocery chain’s regional team had been looking for a local sake brand to partner with for a while, specialty products coordinator Kari McGuinness said. They view it as a burgeoning trend in the American liquor arena.

Whole Foods has just one retail liquor license in the state, employed by its Boulder wine and spirits store. Changes to the state’s liquor laws adopted in 2016 mean the company could apply for a second license, and — in 2022 — a third, but McGuinness said there are no plans to do so at this time. Beginning Jan. 1, grocery stores that carry 3.2-percent alcohol beer can begin carrying full strength brews, under the updated rules, but that won’t impact sake, which is regulated as wine. 

Bottles — 375 milliliters— of Colorado Sake Co.’s American Standard and Horchata Nigori will be sold for $12.99 in Boulder, or $24.99 for a gift set with a bottle of each. To kick start sales and drive consumer interest, all products will be discounted — $1 off for single bottles, $2 for gift sets — through the holidays.

Courtesy Colorado Sake Co.The packaging for Colorado Sake Co.’s gift packs. The packs, which contain one bottle of the company’s American Standard sake variety and one bottle of its Horchata Nigori, is one of three launch products the company will be selling at the Whole Foods Market Wine & Spirits in Boulder starting Oct. 31, 2018. Related Articles

Colorado Sake Co. isn’t waiting for retail sales to fund its next move. Co-founder and head brewer William Stuart is on the lookout for a new space, larger than the 900 square feet the business fills now.

“We’re closed (four days a week) to make sake,” he said. “We’d rather be open longer and have food.”

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Denver Sports Omelette: Predicting the Pac-12’s bowl game lineup

3 hours 19 min ago

Halloween is a little more than a week away, and the Pac-12’s College Football Playoff dreams have already turned into a pumpkin.

As one could have foreseen weeks ago, Washington State is the last one-loss team standing, and it’s only a matter of time before the Cougars “Coug it” and join the rest of the Pac. If they’re on brand, that probably happens this weekend at Stanford.

So, without a playoff spot to worry about, now is as good a time as any for the Omelette of Champions to look into our crystal ball and make a few postseason predictions.

In just six short weeks, the conference’s division champions will play before hundreds at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara for the right to go to the Granddaddy (aka, the Rose Bowl). After that, the conference’s bowl lineup shakes out as follows: No. 2 – Alamo Bowl, No. 3 – Holiday Bowl, No. 4 – Red Box Bowl, No. 5 – Sun Bowl, No. 6 – Las Vegas Bowl, and No. 7 – Cheeze-It Bowl.

Two teams are already bowl eligible and four more are just one win away. Unless something crazy happens — and this being the Pac-12, it would be foolish to rule that out — it appears likely the conference will fulfill its bowl obligations. And who knows? They might even win a bowl or two.

It’s happened before. Just not recently.

Cheeze-It Bowl, 7 p.m. Dec. 26 at Chase Field in Phoenix — Colorado vs. TCU: A chance for the Buffs to springboard into the offseason on a positive note with a victory over a top-tier program. Win this, and CU becomes a chic Rose Bowl pick for 2019.

Las Vegas Bowl, 1:30 p.m. Dec 15 at Sam Boyd Stadium — USC vs. Fresno State: Trojans fans celebrate the end of the Clay Helton era with a weekend on the Strip. Everyone wins. Except for poor Clay Helton.

Sun Bowl, noon Dec. 31 at Sun Bowl Stadium in El Paso, Texas — Stanford vs. Miami: Scholars vs. Ballers. Expect lots and lots of… empty seats.

Red Box Bowl, 1 p.m. Dec. 31 at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. — Washington State vs. Michigan State: If all we got was the Mark Dantonio-Mike Leach joint press conference, that would be enough.

Week 9 picks

Season: 29-18-1 vs. spread, 49-10 straight up; Last week: 2-4, 5-1)

No. 23 Utah (5-2, 3-2) at UCLA (2-5, 2-2), 8:30 p.m. Friday (Line: Utah -10) — Utah 34, UCLA 21

Oregon State (1-6, 0-4) at Colorado (5-2. 2-2), 1 p.m. Saturday (Line: CU -23.5) — Colorado 42, Oregon State 24

Arizona State (3-4, 1-3) at Southern Cal (4-3, 3-2), 1:30 p.m. Saturday (Line: USC -6) — ASU 23, USC 17

No. 15 Washington (6-2, 4-1) at Cal (4-3, 1-3), 4:30 p.m. Saturday (Line: UW -11.5) — UW 31, Cal 17

No. 14 Washington State (6-1, 3-1) at No. 24 Stanford (5-2, 3-1), 5 p.m. Saturday (Line: Stanford -3.0) — Stanford 31, Wazzu 27

No. 19 Oregon (5-2, 2-2) at Arizona (3-5, 2-3), 8:30 p.m. Saturday (Line: Oregon -10.0) — Oregon 38, Arizona 27

Holiday Bowl, 5 p.m. Dec. 31 at SDCCU Stadium in San Diego — Oregon vs. Penn State: Not only do we get two of the best quarterbacks in college football in Justin Herbert and Trace McSorley, but also the Ducks’ gaudy uniforms vs. Penn State’s unassailable blue-and-whites.

Alamo Bowl, 7 p.m. Dec. 28 at Alamodome in San Antonio — Utah vs. Texas: It’s not the Rose Bowl Utes fans so desperately crave, but a shot at the Longhorns isn’t a bad consolation prize.

Rose Bowl, 3 p.m. Jan. 1 at Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif. — UW vs. Michigan: The Huskies and Wolverines renew a rivalry that once defined this game in the early 1990s. Can Chris Petersen finally knock off a giant at UW?

— Matt Schubert, The Denver Post

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Three Colorado communities make new list of “Top 20 Tech Towns”

3 hours 19 min ago

Three Colorado communities made a list of the best 20 areas for tech workers in a new report by a national technology industry association.

CompTIA’s report, released Tuesday, ranks the Denver-Lakewood-Aurora area as eighth-best in the country for tech workers based on salaries, job availability and growth and cost of living. The report, “Top 20 Tech Towns,” lists Boulder as No. 19 and Colorado Springs as No. 20.

Colorado and North Carolina are the only states with three cities on the list. The Charlotte, N.C.-metro area tops the rankings, followed by Raleigh, N.C., at No. 2. The top 20 cities are spread across 14 states.

“The geographic diversity of the index is something we’re very excited to see and demonstrates the positive impact the technology industry is having on regional economies,” Nancy Hammervik, CompTIA’s executive vice president of industry relations, said in a statement.

The inclusion of university communities, like Boulder, shows that an abundance of well-educated talent has helped the cities grow into “full-on innovation hubs,” said Spencer Bone, a director of marketing with CompTIA.

“This shows IT is a lot more than just coding. Everywhere you look now tech jobs are popping up,” Bone said.

The report, the first of what the association plans to be an annual release, comes as the technology industry is experiencing significant growth. The industry expanded by nearly 200,000 jobs in 2017 to an estimated 11.5 million workers, according to the association. Additionally, at $1.6 trillion, the tech sector is one of the largest components in the nation’s economy and is a top-five economic contributor in 22 states.

“The idea behind the report is that there are different rankings of different tech towns, but we thought we would bring in a more well-rounded picture. We decided to bring in other factors,” including projected job growth, Spencer said.

Making the Top 10 list speaks to the focus the past several years in Denver on helping entrepreneurs get started, scale up and grow, said Deborah Cameron, chief business development officer with the Denver Office of Economic Development.

“It also reflects our intentional approach of really cultivating and nurturing the sector,” Cameron said.

The inclusion of Colorado Springs on the Top 20 list wasn’t a surprise, said Tammy Fields, chief economic development officer for the Colorado Springs Chamber and Economic Development Corp.

“The IT sector has definitely seen growth over the last 10 years, from software to data centers to cyber-security operations and everything in between,” Fields said.

The educated workforce and sophisticated information networks associated with the strong military presence in Colorado Springs have helped expand the industry, Fields added. “And we have amazing outdoor recreation with extreme ease of access that’s attractive to workers who can work anywhere they want.”

The report includes profiles of the ranked cities’ tech community. Below are some of the highlights for the three Colorado communities and comments from the report:

The Denver-Aurora-Lakewood area — Employers posted 50,897 IT jobs between August 2017 and July 2018; the number of jobs is expected to grow another 11 percent the next five years; and the median salary is $90,958.

“Colorado has one of the nation’s lowest unemployment rates, especially in IT, which has resulted in huge shortages for in-demand roles like IT engineers and software developers.”

Boulder — Employers posted 5,821 IT jobs between August 2017 and July 2018; the number of jobs is expected to grow 5 percent the next five years; and the median salary is $88,899.

“There is a high concentration of employment here in several industry clusters, including aerospace, bioscience and information technology.”

Colorado Springs — Employers posted 8,356 IT jobs between August 2017 and July 2018; the number of jobs is expected to grow by 5 percent in the next five years; and the median salary is $90,438.

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“With a median tech talent salary of $90,438 a year, Colorado Springs IT pros are making similar salaries to those in other Colorado cities on our list, but the cost of living is lower than both Boulder and Denver.”

The report notes the cost of living in the Colorado communities ranges from 7 percent to about 15 percent higher the national average, but points to amenities and outdoor lifestyle that have made the state among the fastest-growing.

CompTIA compiled job posting data over a 12-month period focusing on 20 metropolitan areas with populations greater than 250,000, where demand for tech workers is greatest. CompTIA then ranked the cities based on cost of living, number of open tech positions, and projected job growth over the next 12 months and the next five years.

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Broncos well-rested and eager for Chiefs rematch in Kansas City

3 hours 19 min ago

Broncos’ outside linebacker Bradley Chubb recorded sack No. 6-1/2 in the victory at Arizona on Thursday, the most of any rookie and tied for sixth best in the NFL. The always-smiling edge rusher celebrated his football-free Sunday by counting sheep.

“I slept a lot this weekend,” Chubb said Monday. “My body feels good — all the soreness came out.”

Denver (3-4) added three days of rest before its preparation for the Chiefs in Kansas City on Sunday at a critical juncture where the season could swing either way. Coach Vance Joseph’s directive to players on Friday before the weekend off: “Use this time to recover. You’ve played two games in five days. We are sore and beat up a little bit.”

There are three Broncos still listed as day-to-day with injuries — safety Darian Stewart (neck), running back Royce Freeman (ankle) and wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton (knee) — but the majority of dinged-up players returned to the team’s walk-through Monday fresh and eager for a rematch with the AFC West’s top dog.

Denver Broncos

“We feel pretty good,” linebacker Shaquil Barrett said. “We had a break, so our bodies are not as sore as they usually are right now. We know that it’s from the work that we put in. It’s not like something magical happened, we just put the work in and we got the results from it.”

The Broncos’ defense unveiled its most impressive performance to date last week in Arizona when it created five turnovers in addition limiting the Cardinals to 10 points and 3.4 yards per play. The memory of Denver’s narrow Week 4 home loss to Kansas City, 27-23, also inspires confidence despite the Chiefs scoring 45 (Bengals) and 40 (Patriots) in their two most recent games. The Broncos are hoping lessons learned from round one against KC (6-1) can be applied at what is expected to be a raucous road environment for round two.

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“It’s our job to put pressure on those dudes,” safety Will Parks said. “You can’t get comfortable with them. We can’t let them know what we’re doing. We’ve got to go out there and hit them on all cylinders. Everybody has to be on point.”

Added wide receiver Demaryius Thomas: “Going up against Kansas City, we’ve got to put up points.” He means a lot of them.

Denver last beat a road team with a winning record way back in Week 2 of the 2015 season — a 31-24 victory at Kansas City. Joseph is banking on his team following up its 35-point victory at Arizona with renewed confidence.

“I would hope winning that football game (and) how we won it would help the guys understand that that’s the key to our success — play good, clean football, to practice that way all week and obviously play that way,” Joseph said. “I think winning helps, especially the young guys, understand how you prep for NFL games and how you play for NFL games.”

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What is Amendment 74? And why are so many Colorado leaders against it?

3 hours 19 min ago

Amendment 74 is getting bashed.

Whether it’s Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, calling it “one of the worst initiatives that I have seen” or Republican Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers labeling it “stupid” and “a disaster for taxpayers of our state and local governments,” Amendment 74 has elicited high-profile opposition far and wide.

The measure, which would amend the Colorado constitution to require that property owners be compensated for devaluation of their property due to government action, has been condemned by dozens of city councils across the state. It has also taken on heavy fire from the Colorado Municipal League as an unwise policy replete with unintended consequences.

The main argument against Amendment 74 is that it will open up the floodgates to litigation, with claims of property value loss being filed against governments that are just exercising their normal land use or zoning authority.

“From a purely municipal perspective, if we start seeing numerous frivolous lawsuits, taxpayers can expect costs for their city to go up and services will be cut back,” said the league’s deputy director, Kevin Bommer. “It will lead to paralysis of government to enact reasonable and appropriate regulations, even for health and safety.”

But Shawn Martini, vice president of advocacy for the Colorado Farm Bureau, the group officially behind the measure, said Amendment 74 is a necessary safeguard of private property rights.

“It’s water, it’s surface property — and for many of our producers, it’s much of what they have,” Martini said. “A government shouldn’t be able to take 90 to 95 percent of property without compensation.”

Many Amendment 74 detractors say one of the most distasteful elements of the campaign for the initiative lies in its base of financial support. According to filings with the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office, around $8 million in monetary and non-monetary contributions have been made to the issue committee behind 74 — Colorado’s Shared Heritage.

The bulk of that money comes from Protect Colorado, an oil- and gas-backed committee that is also pouring millions of dollars into defeating Proposition 112, which would increase the setback distance for new wells.

Yet the first public polling on the issue, released Monday, suggests voters agree with the Colorado Farm Bureau’s argument: 63 percent said they support it in an online poll conducted by YouGov for the University of Colorado’s American Politics Research Lab. The poll of 800 registered voters was conducted between Oct. 12 and 17. It has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.

Amendment 74 advocates point to the 2001 Colorado Supreme Court case, Animas Valley Sand and Gravel Inc. v. Lata Plata County, in which the high court concluded that as long as government regulations don’t completely destroy the value of a property — even if they erode nearly all of it — a “takings” claim will not prevail.

“We don’t think that’s fair — that’s what we’re trying to change,” Martini said.

But Justin Pidot, a law professor at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law, said Amendment 74 will introduce chaos to Colorado’s constitution. Governments enact zoning and other rules for the common good, he said, like not allowing a gas station or fast food restaurant to be built in the middle of a residential neighborhood.

For the property owner who might profit from having a McDonald’s on their land, the zoning is a burden, Pidot said. But for the next-door neighbor, it’s protection against a high-volume business locating within feet of their fence line. In essence, he said, land-use regulations are widely recognized as a compromise mechanism to maintaining order, aesthetics and safety in a community.

“Government shouldn’t have to pay you when it’s imposing burdens with one hand and conferring benefits with the other,” Pidot said. “An initiative like this allows you to pick out the regulations you don’t like. It’s a very simplistic, blunt approach.”

Regulatory takings like these are different from the per se property takings that occur under eminent domain, he said, when a government takes ownership of private ground for the purpose of building roads or schools and then compensates the owner of that land for the taking.

Amendment 74 opponents point to Oregon’s Measure 37, passed by voters in 2004, which allowed property owners whose property value was reduced by environmental or other land-use regulations to ask the state or local government for compensation. According to a state analysis done on the measure in 2011, more than $17 billion in property loss claims were filed under the law.

The cost of executing Measure 37 became so high that Oregon voters largely defanged it by passing Measure 49 three years later.

Lakewood Mayor Adam Paul said the trouble with Colorado’s Amendment 74 is compounded by the fact that it is a constitutional amendment, which is much harder to change after the fact than a statutory measure.

“Zoning is in place for the health, safety and welfare of our communities,” Paul said.

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The Colorado Oil and Gas Association is not taking an official position on Amendment 74, but in a statement to The Denver Post, Executive Director Dan Haley said that “if a state or local government conducts actions that negatively impact an individual’s property value, then those individuals should be compensated, plain and simple.”

“Amendment 74 is a good-government measure that strengthens rules to prevent both property takings and property damages,” Haley said.

Marc Armusch, a farmer outside Keenesburg who grows corn, wheat and alfalfa — along with barley for Colorado’s burgeoning craft brew industry — said Amendment 74 is designed to do far more than protect underground mineral rights.

And he disputed the idea that lawyers will come out of the woodwork to file endless claims against local governments. He said there are still plenty of safeguards in Colorado law that put the burden on the property owners to prove that their losses are real and the result of government action.

“This is the first chance to protect fair market value of our farm and ranches from government overreach,” he said.

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Here’s what we found in background checks of Colorado statehouse candidates

3 hours 19 min ago

Candidates for Colorado’s General Assembly have a few DUI, drug and assault charges in their backgrounds — charges that are at least a decade old.

That was the finding in background checks The Denver Post conducted to give voters a more full picture of their options for representation Nov. 6.

Some candidates declined to provide their full birthdates, which are required to run checks through the Colorado Bureau of Investigation: Susan Kochevar, Susan Lontine, Vicki Pyne, Jay Frank Kucera and James D. “Jim” Wilson.

These state House and Senate candidates did not respond to efforts to reach them by phone, email and social media: Kent Edward Jarnig, Kim Bishop, Terri Carver, Monica Duran, Mike Donald, Liz Rosenbaum, Mike Weissman, Tim Geitner, Alysia Padilla, Alex Valdez, Kevin Van Winkle, Donald E. Valdez, Joan Poston, Kevin R. Smith and Lori A. Saine.

Of those who cooperated, the vast majority of candidates do not have criminal records in Colorado, according to Post research.

The Post wrote earlier this month about the record found for one candidate: Rep. Jovan Melton, a top-ranking Democrat who was arrested twice on domestic violence charges and pleaded guilty once.

Here’s the rest of what reporters found in reviews of CBI records as well as social media.

Robert “Dave” John, House 4:

John was arrested on charges of dangerous drug possession in 1971, when he was 21. The charges were dismissed by the court.

Sonya Jaquez Lewis, House 12:

Lewis recently disclosed on her campaign Facebook page that she was arrested on charges of misdemeanor assault in Boulder more than 20 years ago. The charges were dropped, according to court records obtained by the Denver Post.

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The assault happened when Lewis and her then-partner were trying to settle their joint ownership of a house at the end of a three-year relationship, according to police records. The other woman told the responding officer Lewis was “emotionally abusive” and that Lewis had threatened to smear her name during their arguments.

After the woman called the Boulder Sheriff’s Office, their argument escalated. The woman told police Lewis slapped her across the face, according to the police record. The responding officer did not find marks on the woman.

The charges were dropped.

Other than her Facebook post, Lewis has not spoken publicly about the incident. She did not return Denver Post requests for her birth date before the Oct. 12 post and has not responded to multiple requests for comment since.

Arthur Erwin, House 24: 

Erwin was arrested on charges of driving while ability impaired in 1988; he was 26. He pleaded guilty and did 40 hours of community service, paid a fine and attended an alcohol class, Erwin said.

“It happened once and didn’t get repeated,” he said.

Luke Bray, House 26: 

Bray was arrested on charges of petty shoplifting in 2000, when he was 19. The charge resulted from a misunderstanding about a hat Bray had bought in a store in Glenwood Springs, and the charges were dropped, he said.

In 2007, Bray was arrested for trespassing when he climbed the fence to the Glenwood Springs hot springs for late-night skinny dipping. He said he pleaded guilty and wrote an apology letter.

Grady Nouis, House 29:

Nouis pleaded guilty to maintaining a drug house and possession of marijuana in 2005, when he was 21 years old. His arrest record alleges that he was in possession of materials to grow psilocybin mushrooms, popularly known as magic mushrooms.

“I am thankful the judge gave me the grace of a second chance,” said Noius in a separate statement to the Denver Post. “I am blessed to have a family that believes in forgiveness.”

Nouis also has been in the orbit of groups and events associated with far-right views. In a Facebook live video he recorded while at an anti-Shariah law protest earlier this year, Nouis repeatedly used a racial slur during a confrontation with African-American counter-protesters.

While the audio can’t be understood at the beginning of the argument, Nouis, who is white, then complains about an African-American woman: “She called me a n***** and said I can’t say it back.”

He repeated the word several more times, the video shows.

Nouis did not respond to specific questions about the incident. Instead, he said in a statement the “Socialist Democrats are once again feeding mob rule.”

“Nobody cares more than I do about protecting the constitutional rights of all Coloradans regardless of political affiliation, color, gender, or sexual orientation,” the statement said.

Later in the video, Nouis can be heard saying of a confrontation between an African-American counter-protester and an African-American police officer that there’s “nothing better than a little black-on-black crime.”

Hans Romer, House 29: 

Romer was arrested in 1994 on charges of felony drug distribution and evading arrest in Arvada. He was 35 at the time and says he “found the wrong people at the wrong times.”

He pleaded guilty to the drug charge and served 3 1/2 years of intensive supervision probation, according to public court records.

Romer says it is “bogus” to be labeled a criminal for life for his felony, and as a Libertarian, he is running on a platform to decriminalize drugs.

Romer was also arrested on charges of making a harassing phone call in 2003. The charges were dismissed by the district attorney two days later. It was a miscommunication, Romer said.

Alexander “Skinny” Winkler, House 34: 

Winkler was arrested on charges of driving while ability impaired in Boulder in 2004 when he was 25.

Winkler pleaded guilty to careless driving and a lane usage violation. He served 24 hours of community service and attended an alcohol education class, according to the Boulder DA’s office. He told The Post he was not driving at the time of the arrest.

Perry Buck, House 49:

Buck was arrested on charges of driving under the influence in 1980 when she was 18. Due to the age of the case, The Denver Post was unable to learn its disposition.

“I will never forget the pain I caused my family and the lessons I learned,” Buck said in a statement. “I own the DUI and the experience taught me to have more compassion for those who face challenging times.”

Colorado General Assembly candidates who haven’t previously cooperated but would like to do so may contact Jackson Barnett at

Reporting contributed by Natalie Weber and Anna Staver. 

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Ask Amy: Man now wants to apologize for his sexual assault

4 hours 49 min ago

Dear Amy: I am a successful man in my late 30s. I am very interested in social justice, and particularly concerned about violence against women.

The issue is this: I wasn’t always the man I am today. I had a rather alcohol and drug-fueled youth, and did some things I am not proud of.

One particular boozy night I made some unwanted advances and committed what amounts to sexual assault. I did this. I am deeply remorseful and wish to apologize for what I have done.

My concern is that the woman involved may not relish hearing from me, given what happened.

Do you recommend I reach out or let this remain in the past?

I am trying to be a better man.

— Working on it in the Midwest

Dear Working on it: You need to carefully examine your intentions and expectations before attempting to make this apology. Do you expect a response? Are you pursuing forgiveness so that you will feel better about yourself? Are you prepared to face the possible legal consequences (including being charged with a crime and/or sued) for admitting guilt for what you’ve done?

On the one hand, your impulse to admit this is commendable. On the other, it implicitly asks something of the woman you’ve admitted to assaulting. Any contact with you might be a triggering event for her (do not attempt to meet or speak to her; any contact should be in writing).

One college assault victim who responded to my query about your dilemma said, “Men who commit sexual assault don’t want justice for their victims — they want forgiveness from them.”

You could really prove you are a changed man by turning yourself in to the police, and letting them contact your victim to see if she wants to press charges.

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I’m sure readers will want to weigh in; I’ll run responses in a future column.

Dear Amy: My ex-husband and I got married after a quick engagement of six months. I was 23, and we had two beautiful children together, but we were both young, and didn’t know each other or ourselves. That marriage lasted for nine years, and ended four years ago.

After four years of being single and dating online and getting sober from alcohol and falling off the wagon for a few months, I moved into a recovery home for women to get myself straight and sober again. There, I met an amazing man with over 11 years of sobriety who was volunteering as a “handyman” for the house.

I was only there a few months until I moved into a new apartment and landed a wonderful job, got stable and the man and I started dating.

We have been together now for 10 months. We both have children (12, 7, 6 and 5) and we’ve both survived divorce. We both have struggled with addiction and are both active members of AA.

We understand important things about each other.

We talk about getting engaged within the next year and married in 2020.

Does that sound too soon to you? I want to show my kids what a healthy marriage is like.

— Too Soon? in Chi-Town

Dear Too Soon?: I applaud your determination to advance this relationship slowly and carefully. Your continued sobriety must be your priority. No matter how healthy your relationship is with your guy, life with four children these ages will provide a lot of extra stress for both of you.

Before marriage, it is vital for you two to discuss and compare your parenting styles and to talk about how you plan to tackle your various challenges. Couples therapy before engagement and marriage will help both of you to face your future and continue to work your steps through sobriety. Understand that your sobriety is a tender thing, and never ever take it for granted.

If you commit to facing your future with intention and purpose, then your timeline sounds just about right.

I’m very happy for you and your children. Your happiness and ongoing stability will change their lives forever.

Dear Amy: I’m responding to the question from “The Invisible Wife,” whose husband spent all of his home-time on his phone.

I’m a psychotherapist and I would highly suggest this husband go for addiction therapy.

If he won’t go, then his wife must look for a support group for herself. Tech addiction is no joke.

— Disappointed

Dear Disappointed: “The Invisible Wife’s” first task is to get her husband’s attention. My suggestion focused on ways to do that.

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Ryan throws for 379 yards, Falcons beat Giants 23-20

9 hours 7 min ago

ATLANTA — Matt Ryan is putting up MVP-like numbers, even on a team that hasn’t lived up to expectations.

Matty Ice turned in another brilliant performance in prime time Monday, throwing for 379 yards and completing his final 18 passes to lead the Atlanta Falcons to their second straight victory, 23-20 over the struggling New York Giants.

“Whatever it takes to win,” Ryan said. “That’s the mindset we have every week.”

Ryan threw a 47-yard touchdown pass to Marvin Hall, Tevin Coleman broke loose on a 30-yard scoring run and the Falcons added another chapter to New York’s miserable season, sending the Giants (1-6) to their fourth straight loss.

“I don’t feel like we’re a 1-6 team,” Odell Beckham Jr. said. “That’s what our record is, but that’s not the feeling in the locker room.”

Ryan was the league’s MVP in 2016 when he led Atlanta to the Super Bowl. While these Falcons (3-4) haven’t played to that level, their quarterback is putting up numbers that measure up to what he did two years ago: a 71.1 percent completion rate, 2,335 yards passing, 15 touchdowns and just two interceptions.

Ryan is only focused on the team’s performance.

“To inch our way closer to .500 is a positive for us,” he said.

It was also a big night for Giorgio Tavecchio, who was signed during the week to fill in for injured Atlanta kicker Matt Bryant. The native of Milan, Italy, made all three of his field goal attempts, including a 56-yarder that was the longest of his career and helped seal the victory.

“That kick was good from about 65 yards,” Ryan said. “He did a great job for us coming in on short notice.”

Facing one of the NFL’s worst defenses, New York botched its best scoring chance by going for a touchdown on fourth-and-goal from the 1 early in the third quarter. To the surprise of no one who has seen the Giants stumble through the season, Eli Manning‘s pass for tight end Scott Simonson fell harmlessly to the turf.

Manning was sacked four times but still managed to complete 27 of 38 for 399 yards. Beckham hauled in eight passes for 143 yards, pushing him past 5,000 yards in his career, and Sterling Shepard finished with 167 yards on five receptions.

Both teams got off to sluggish starts offensively. The Falcons failed to cross midfield on their first three possessions, and the Giants weren’t much better.

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Then, suddenly, Atlanta struck for two big plays to grab the lead. Ryan went down the left sideline to tight end Austin Hooper for a 36-yard gain, pushing the Falcons into New York territory for the first time. Then Ryan spotted Hall breaking free down the middle of the field, hitting him perfectly in stride for the touchdown.

Coleman’s touchdown with 7½ minutes remaining gave the Falcons some breathing room, but the Giants finally showed some life offensively.

Manning completed five passes for 61 yards before Saquon Barkley powered over from the 2 with 4:47 remaining for New York’s first TD of the game. Embattled coach Pat Shurmur decided to go for 2, looking to put his team in position to win with another score, but Beckham couldn’t hang on to Manning’s pass.

The Falcons drove into position for Tavecchio’s final field goal, extending the lead to 23-12.

The Giants did manage a touchdown with 5 seconds remaining as Manning hooked up with Beckham on a 1-yard scoring play, but only after the quarterback was stuffed on two straight attempts to run it over, burning off most of the scant time on the clock.


The Falcons were the first team to hold Barkley to less than 100 yards rushing and receiving in a game.

The rookie running back was limited to 43 yards on 14 carries, to go along with nine catches for 51 yards.

It was Barkley’s second-lowest rushing output of the season, eclipsed only by a 28-yard effort against Dallas in Week 2.

Barkley was coming off his best game of the season, totaling 229 yards (130 rushing, 99 receiving) in a loss to Philadelphia.


Bryant is one of the NFL’s most accurate kickers, but Tavecchio sure made a good impression in his return to the NFL.

His 56-yard kick was the longest by a player in his first game with a new team in the last 40 seasons, according to NFL Research. He also connected from 40 and 50 yards.

Tavecchio kicked last season for the Oakland Raiders, but he was without a job until Bryant injured his right hamstring making a long kick in Atlanta’s victory over Tampa Bay.

That prompted the Falcons to bring back Tavecchio, who got a brief look from the team at the end of the preseason.

Even though Bryant will surely reclaim his job as soon as he’s healthy, Tavecchio set himself up to draw attention from other teams when he goes on the open market again.


The Falcons lost another guard when Brandon Fusco went down late in the first half with a right ankle injury.

Fusco had to be helped off the field by a pair of trainers, and he was quickly taken to the locker room on a cart.

Atlanta had already lost another starting guard, Andy Levitre, to a season-ending injury.

Ben Garland took Fusco’s spot on the line.


Giants: New York returns home next Sunday to face NFC East-leading Washington (4-2).

Falcons: Atlanta also plays Washington in its next game — but not until Nov. 4 after a bye week.


Follow Paul Newberry on Twitter at . His work can be found at


More AP NFL: and

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Oregon bakery appeals fine for turning away lesbian couple

9 hours 19 min ago

PORTLAND, Ore. — The owners of a shuttered Oregon bakery fined for refusing to make a wedding cake for a lesbian couple are appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports that lawyers for Melissa and Aaron Klein, former owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, filed the petition Monday.

They’re asking the high court to overturn a state order to pay $135,000 in emotional damages to the couple they turned away.

The Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries imposed the fine in 2015 after finding the Kleins had violated a state anti-discrimination law. An Oregon appeals court upheld the order, and the state Supreme Court declined to hear the case.

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The U.S. high court ruled in favor of a Colorado baker in a similar case, but that decision didn’t address whether a business can invoke religious objections to refuse service to lesbian and gay people.


Information from: The Oregonian/OregonLive,

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Gourmet grilled cheese shop making itself at home on Pearl Street in Boulder

9 hours 22 min ago

The idea of selling grilled cheese sandwiches on Pearl Street has almost certainly been thrown around a lot of dorms and college houses, but having the creativity, experience and connections do it right takes more than a late-night craving and a griddle.

Enter Peter Waters.

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Having worked in the tech industry for more than a decade, Waters entered the Boulder restaurant world in 2011 with zero experience, but as a regular diner on Pearl Street, he came to understand what the community was seeking.

“Anybody can figure out how to run a restaurant, it just takes some time and some guidance, but it takes a lot more time and investment to figure out your audience,” he said. “I always joke that I had the ultimate customer experience in that I was experiencing Dave Query, Joe Romano, and Brian Dayton’s restaurants as a customer and studying them without knowing I was studying them.”

That’s why he believes T/aco, his first restaurant opened in 2011, worked so well, and why he, along with many restaurateurs in Boulder, believe in his latest venture — Ruthie’s Boardwalk Social — a gourmet grilled cheese shop that opened earlier this month in the old Salvaggio’s Deli location at 14th and Pearl streets — will do the same.


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CU Buffs working through offensive woes

9 hours 32 min ago

For two consecutive weeks, the Colorado offense has struggled to gain much traction.

The Buffaloes (5-2, 2-2 Pac-12) have scored just 33 points in the last two games combined, while putting up two of the lowest yardage totals in head coach Mike MacIntyre’s six seasons.

For the first time since 2012, the Buffs have finished with less than 275 yards in back-to-back games.

There are several reasons for the sputtering attack. As MacIntyre has pointed out, the Buffs have played two good defenses (USC and Washington), which is true. The Buffs have also had costly penalties.

“Then, we’ve just got to execute a little bit better,” MacIntyre said.

That is especially true up front, as the Buffs have struggled in the trenches.

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Man shot by security guard in lobby of TV station in Washington

9 hours 46 min ago

WASHINGTON — A man who kicked his way through two doors at the Fox 5 television station in Northwest Washington was shot and wounded by a security guard Monday afternoon, D.C. police said.

Police identified the man as George Odemns, 38, and said he has no fixed address. Odemns was admitted to George Washington University Hospital in critical but stable condition, and he was charged with second-degree burglary, police said.

News media have been on higher alert after a gunman walked into the Annapolis office of the Capital Gazette newspapers in June and killed five staff members.
Police said Odemns was not armed.

Video from two surveillance cameras, aired by Fox 5 News, showed the man wearing a red, hooded sweatshirt walking up to the door, turning his back to the door and with one hard kick knocking out a panel that appears to be plexiglass. Police said the incident happened at 3 p.m.

The intruder then entered a small vestibule and began kicking a second door opening to the lobby, the surveillance video shows. After five kicks, he was able to pull down the plexiglass from the second door. He then climbed through the door and into the lobby of the longtime WTTG offices at 5151 Wisconsin Ave. NW.

Police Cmdr. Melvin Gresham declined to describe what happened next between the intruder and the security guard or whether she exchanged words with the man or used any less-than-lethal weapons. The security guard fired once and hit the man in the upper torso, Gresham said.

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Court records show that Odemns has filed more than two dozen federal lawsuits in recent years alleging that he is being controlled by a microchip planted in his head. All have been dismissed.

In 2014, Odemns sued Fox 5 in D.C. Superior Court, also claiming that the station controlled him with an “illegal nano-chip” and seeking $100 billion in damages.

In November, records show that Odemns was placed under emergency psychiatric care in the District after emailing death threats to D.C. police and the D.C. Office of Human Resources and threatening a federal judge who had dismissed one of his suits. In addition, he was involuntarily committed in 2015, court records show.

Odemns was charged with murder in the District in 2002, but court records indicate that the charge was dismissed soon after he was arrested.

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Denver jail inmates come to aid of deputy beaten with milk crate, union says

10 hours 6 min ago

Inmates at the Denver city jail came to the aid of a deputy who was being attacked by another inmate Monday afternoon, according to a union tweet.

A spokesperson for the Denver Sheriff’s department told Denver7 that the deputy was taken to Denver Health for treatment. The deputy was later released.

According to a tweet from the Denver Sheriffs Fraternal Order of Police, the inmate was using a plastic milk crate to beat the deputy over the head.

The inmate then began to choke the officer when several other inmates came to the aid of the injured officer, the tweet read.

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Man shot dead in Denver’s Five Points neighborhood Monday night

10 hours 17 min ago

A man was fatally shot in the Five Points neighborhood of Denver on Monday night, police said.

The shooting happened in the area of East 26th Avenue and Washington Street.

#DPD Officers are present in the area of 26th & Washington St., in regard to a reported shooting. At at this time, a single victim has been identified and is being treated at an area hospital. There is no additional information available at this time. #Denver

— Denver Police Dept. (@DenverPolice) October 23, 2018

The victim was taken to a local hospital. A short time later police described the incident as a homicide. Police did not release information on a suspect.

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An investigation is ongoing.

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Russia says U.S. is increasing nukes in military planning

October 22, 2018 - 8:39pm

UNITED NATIONS — A senior Russian official voiced concerns Monday that Washington is increasing the role of nuclear weapons in its military planning as part of a stepped-up campaign by the Trump administration to ensure “U.S. military superiority over the rest of the world,” while he also denied U.S. allegations that Moscow has violated an arms treaty.

Andrei Belousov, deputy director of the Foreign Ministry’s Department of Nonproliferation and Arms Control, told the U.N. General Assembly’s disarmament committee that Russia is “especially concerned” at the Trump administration’s Nuclear Posture Review.

The policy review, released in early February, provides for “the creation of low-yield nuclear weapons that would lower the threshold of the use of nuclear weapons,” Belousov said. He said it “also envisages a return to the concept of a ‘limited nuclear war.’ ”

“In essence, the U.S. military thinking in (the) nuclear field has rolled back a half a century when it was believed that a nuclear war was admissible and could be won,” he told the committee’s session on nuclear weapons.

Belousov said Russia has repeatedly called for “appropriate conditions that would allow us to take practical measures to free the world from nuclear weapons.” But he said Moscow must take into account “the existing strategic realities.”

In addition to beefing up its nuclear arsenal, Belousov said, the U.S. is developing a global ballistic missile defense.

He said the Trump administration is also refusing to abandon the potential deployment of weapons in outer space, increasing the “numeric and qualitative” imbalance in conventional weapons, and developing “the Prompt Global Strike concept” that would allow U.S. precision-guided conventional weapons to strike anywhere on Earth within one hour.

Belousov said the Trump administration explains its plans for “large-scale strengthening of its nuclear potential” by referring to the alleged growing role of nuclear weapons in Russia’s military doctrine.

“Nevertheless, neither the military doctrine nor the statements of political or military leadership of the Russian Federation contain such assumptions,” Belousov said. “Actually, we reduced the role of nuclear weapons to the historic minimum.”

He called U.S. accusations that Russia isn’t complying with a 1987 nuclear weapons treaty “groundless” and said Moscow’s claims of U.S. violations of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty are “justified.”

Still, Belousov said, “we are prepared to work together with our U.S. colleagues on the entire set of problems regarding the INF. We hope that we will be reciprocated.”

President Donald Trump announced on Saturday that the U.S. is withdrawing from the INF, which was signed with the former Soviet Union. He said Russia has violated the treaty, which prohibits the U.S. and Russia from possessing, producing or test-flying ground-launched nuclear cruise and ballistic missiles with a range of 300 to 3,400 miles.

Trump warned that the U.S. will begin developing such weapons unless Russia and China agree not to possess or develop them. China wasn’t a party to the pact that was signed in 1987 by U.S. President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev.

Belousov said U.S. withdrawal from the INF would be “another short-signed and extremely dangerous step by the United States for international peace.”

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“The withdrawal from the treaty would prove again that the U.S. political and military authorities prioritize their foreign policy goals by obsessively striving to ensure the U.S. military superiority over the rest of the world,” Belousov said. “But it is clear that they are not concerned about such issues as strategic stability, international peace and global security at all.”

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton and his Russian counterpart, Security Council chairman Nikolai Patrushev, discussed a range of arms control issues in Moscow on Monday, including the INF and a possible five-year extension of another pivotal arms control agreement between Russia and the U.S. — the New START Treaty, according to a statement from the Russian council.

The New START Treaty, which limits long-range nuclear weapons to 1,550 strategic nuclear warheads and 700 deployed launchers, is scheduled to expire in 2021. Russia has questioned U.S. compliance.

Belousov said Russian President Vladimir Putin “has confirmed our principled readiness to study the possibility of the treaty’s extension. However, it cannot be done without addressing the remaining questions regarding the U.S. compliance.”

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CSU student thrown to ground during arrest gets probation

October 22, 2018 - 8:18pm

FORT COLLINS — A Colorado State University student who was shown on video being thrown face-first to the sidewalk by a police officer last year has been sentenced to probation.

The Coloradoan reports 23-year-old Michaella Surat was sentenced Monday after a jury convicted her in August of misdemeanor charges of obstructing a peace officer and resisting arrest.

Michaella Surat was arrested in Fort Collins in April 2017 after police say she hit an officer multiple times.

A bystander’s video showed a Fort Collins police officer forcing Surat to the pavement. An internal investigation cleared the officer.

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Attorney Nathan Hansen told the court that his client “has suffered a tremendous punishment as a result of this case already.”

Surat was ordered to one year of supervised probation and 48 hours of community service.

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Driver, passenger injured in fiery crash when vehicle slams into house in Eagle County

October 22, 2018 - 7:58pm

Two people and a dog were injured Monday afternoon when a vehicle crashed into a home in Eagle County.

The crash happened at about 1 p.m. on Norgaard Way in Cordillera, near Edwards, according to the Eagle River Fire Protection District.

The crash caused a fire at the home and the roof of the garage collapsed as firefighters were trying to free a passenger in the vehicle who was trapped by the wreckage. A firefighter and the passenger were both injured by debris as the ceiling collapsed.

When firefighters first arrived, the driver had gotten out of the vehicle, but was disoriented in heavy smoke, according to a news release. Firefighters helped him out of the mangled garage and wreckage. Firefighters provided breathing apparatus for the trapped passenger as they worked to get her out.

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A second crew of firefighters extinguished the fire in the garage and ensured ventilation into the garage as hydraulic equipment was used to re-position the crashed vehicle, allowing the trapped passenger to be removed.

“Firefighters train relentlessly for dangerous situations,” Fire Chief Karl Bauer said in a Facebook post. “Every now and then they are confronted with a truly complex, rapidly (evolving) incident that puts all their training to the test in unexpected ways. This was one of those incidents. For all the dangers this incident posed, we are genuinely grateful no one suffered serious injury.”

The driver and passenger were both taken to a local hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation and other minor injuries. A dog in the home was taken to a local veterinarian for evaluation and treatment.

The structural integrity of the house is currently being evaluated. The cause of the crash is under investigation.

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