DENVER (AP) — A woman has been sentenced to more than two years in prison for helping her son steal at least 57 guns from a southern Colorado store in 2017. U.S. Attorney Jason Dunn’s office says 35-year-old Jennifer Scoggin was sentenced Thursday to two years and two months in prison after pleading guilty in October to firearms theft.
According to court records, Scoggin lured the owner of Dragon Arms gun store in El Paso County away from the store during the planned burglary. Prosecutors say Scoggin’s son and three other people then broke in and stole handguns, shotguns and rifles.
The store owner has previously told local media that Scoggin is his ex-wife’s daughter.
Three of the burglary co-defendants have received time-served sentences. Prosecutors say all stolen guns were later located.
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EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – It has been a year to the day, but the memory of El Paso County Sheriff’s Deputy Micah Flick lives on. Ceremonies by the sheriff’s office took place at both the jail and sheriff’s headquarters on Tuesday.
Rachael Flick, who lost her husband, spoke of the compassion from other police widows.
“It was a club I never wanted to join, but from what I’ve seen, there is love for the law enforcement community,” she said.
Flick died when an undercover auto theft investigation became violent. The suspect shot several officers and wounded a bystander who is now paralyzed.
This happened just two days after Adams County Deputy Heath Gumm was laid to rest, and some three weeks after Douglas County Deputy Zach Parrish was shot and killed on New Year’s Eve in 2017.
“I am of proud to be a member of law enforcement community as wife, widow and spouse and mother of kids who lost their dads. It’s a powerful place to be,” Rachel said.
The memorials are a reminder of the loss while at the same time a chance to heal together.
As Rachael put it, “We have chosen to put one foot in front of the other… creating new memories.”
She says they will continue to step forward.
(CNN) – An undocumented immigrant in Colorado says he’s taken shelter in a church because the government shutdown leaves him with no other choice. Miguel Ramirez Valiente is facing a deportation order — but his lawyer says right now he has no way to fight it.
Most immigration courts are shuttered because of the shutdown. Judges are only hearing the cases of detained immigrants, while other cases are being postponed. But Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s fugitive operations and removal divisions are still operating.
So Ramirez Valiente stood at the pulpit at All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on Wednesday and told reporters he was seeking sanctuary to fight for the chance to remain with his wife and three children.
Attorney Lisa Guerra said that Ramirez didn’t realize until recently that officials had reopened the immigration case against him last year. Ramirez, she says, missed a court date in October because notice never reached him. He learned in December that he’d been ordered removed, she says.
Guerra said she’s filed a motion to reopen the case in the Denver Immigration Court, which is closed. And now her hands are tied.
“With the government shutdown, mail basically goes into a box,” she told reporters. “There are no judges to decide that motion to reopen. There is no office of chief council to speak with about the case. … We are basically in a legal limbo, waiting for the government to reopen.”
Wife: ‘My three children and I are terrified’
In an automated email reply to CNN’s request for comment on the case, ICE said its media personnel can’t respond to queries due to the shutdown.
Notifications are sent to someone’s last known address, an ICE official told CNN. The official said they could not comment on Ramirez’s case, but said that in general, not receiving notice is not a legal defense.
ICE fugitive operations and removals are continuing during the shutdown, the official said, but some removals are delayed because immigration courts aren’t hearing cases for immigrants that aren’t detained. And some attorneys for the agency are furloughed.
Ramirez, a stonemason, said gang violence forced him to flee El Salvador 14 years ago. He’s been fighting his immigration case since 2011, after a traffic stop by a local sheriff landed him in ICE custody.
A judge administratively closed the removal case against him last year, Guerra said, after Ramirez survived a workplace assault and applied for a visa for crime victims.
Ramirez said he would have showed up in court if he’d known the case against him had been reopened.
“I’ve been fighting my case for eight years,” he said. “I never missed a court date.”
His wife, Alisha Ramirez Valiente, told reporters Wednesday that she didn’t know what she’d do if authorities sent her husband to El Salvador.
“The government shutdown is tearing our family apart. My three children and I are terrified that he will be deported. His children need him. So do I,” she said. “I hope that him being in sanctuary will give him enough time for the government to reopen and his motion to be reviewed.”
Dozens in sanctuary
The partial government shutdown has lasted for weeks as President Trump and lawmakers spar over funding for his proposed border wall. Much of the US immigration system has ground to a halt during the stalemate.
Immigration courts that don’t handle detainees’ cases are completely closed.
And it could be a matter of years, not a matter of a few weeks, before postponed cases are heard in court, the head of the immigration judges’ union told CNN last week.
“It’s a huge, huge disruption for the orderly processing of cases,” Judge Ashley Tabaddor said, describing the shutdown as “another disruption on top of the docket shuffling the administration already does.”
It’s not clear why Ramirez’s case was reopened last year. Officials from the Executive Office for Immigration Review, the branch of the Justice Department that runs US immigration courts, could not be immediately reached for comment. Many judges and office employees have been furloughed as a result of the partial government shutdown.
Last year, former US Attorney General Jeff Sessions ruled that immigration judges were not allowed to use their discretion to close cases. Closure effectively ended proceedings but didn’t dismiss cases altogether.
Ramirez is one of some 50 immigrants who’ve taken sanctuary in churches since President Trump took office, according to Church World Service.
They are searching for solutions to their immigration cases and hoping ICE will stick to its policy of not arresting anyone in “sensitive locations” — schools, hospitals or houses of worship — except in extenuating circumstances.
On Wednesday, the Colorado Springs church’s minister told reporters that her congregation was honored to offer sanctuary to Ramirez.
“It’s important to remember the true crisis is not at the border, but rather within the borders of the United States, beyond hardworking government employees being put on furlough and services being shut down,” the Rev. Nori Rost said. “The true crisis we face is the moral one of not honoring the country’s history of providing a safe haven for those fleeing violence.”
By Catherine E. Shoichet, CNN
& © 2019 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) – On Thursday morning a two-alarm fire broke out at an eight-plex residential building located at 2460 East Monument Street in Colorado Springs. The fire department tweeted photos of the incident at 7 a.m. after putting out the fire.
The Colorado Springs Fire Department tweeted that they were en route to the blaze at around 6 am. After CSFD arrived to put out the fire, American Red Cross workers were at the scene to assist seven people that were left displaced from their homes. Two residents were treated at the site before being released and no one was killed.
Investigators were at the scene looking into what started the blaze.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4)– It will be a little while longer before one of Colorado’s most iconic attractions gets a makeover. The United States Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel won’t be closing in January after all.
The major renovation project was slated to begin next month and the chapel would have been out of commission for an estimated four years while the work happened. That project has been delayed.
The chapel will stay open for cadets and tourists until the middle of June 2019.
EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) – The remains of Kevin Rudnicki were found this week, according to his family. Rudnicki disappeared in September.
The 20 year old man left to hike in the Mount Herman area on Sept. 2nd. Rudnicki told him family he would return for his niece’s birthday party, but he never came home.
The coroner’s office is working to officially identify the body and determine a cause of death.
EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4)– Authorities seized millions in cash and property during a pot bust that included “Church of the Most High” among six businesses. Detectives seized everything from Rolex watches to high-end jewelry and pot.
According to court documents, the investigation began in April when officers investigated “Church of the Most High,” an illegal retail pot shop on East Boulder Street. The pot shop was operating under the guise of being a church.
Detectives linked the so-called church to other marijuana shops which were also operating illegally in El Paso County. Those included Toke-A-Lot, Toke-A-Lil, Primo’s Smoke, Best Bud and Peak Ascension, Blazed & Confused.
Detectives recovered about $10,000 and more than 100 pounds of refined marijuana product. All six retail marijuana stores were issued cease and desist notices.
Colorado Springs vetoed retail pot shops, making the businesses illegal within city limits. All six shops were operated by Jon Martinez.
A search warrant was executed at the home of Martinez, 37, where detectives found:
– More than 60 different handguns and rifles stuffed in safes in the garage
– Six of the 60 were stolen during previously reported crimes
– Numerous pieces of high-end jewelry
– Several Rolex watches
– Five vehicles
– One motorcycle
The police department issued this statement, “Cash seized is approximately $1.375 million in U.S. currency and over $2 million, when seized property is included in the total dollar amount. These numbers will continue to fluctuate as detectives continue their investigation.”
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) – A homeowner in Colorado Springs is hoping someone recognizes the man who swiped a package off his front porch.
Surveillance cameras show a vehicle pulling into the victim’s driveway, and it doesn’t look like the thief has any problem standing out.
He walks up to the door wearing bright yellow shoes, grabs the package and takes off.
“He had a blonde ponytail, yellow tennis shoes. He had tattoos on his sleeves. Very distinct,” said the homeowner. “I couldn’t believe that someone would just walk up and not even think twice about it.”
The homeowner says he filed a police report.
If you recognize the man in the video, you’re asked to call police.