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Ex Colorado Cop Convicted of Second Degree Murder Sentenced to 16 Years in Prison

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Jack Jacquez (left) James Ashby (right)

In June, I reported on the conviction of former Colorado police officer James Adam Ashby.  Ashby was found guilty for killing 27-year old Jack Jacquez in October 2014.  Ashby’s sentencing was scheduled for September 23, 2016.   There was a delay in sentencing. Ashby’s attorneys tried to have the conviction overturned, claiming there was insufficient evidence to convict, errors by the court during the proceedings, and several instances of juror misconduct.  The Colorado Judicial Department says the motion for a retrial was denied by a judge on October 20, 2016.

The second-degree murder conviction meant that Ashby could be sentenced up to 48 years in prison.

Today, Otero County District Court Judge Mark MacDonnell sentenced 32-year old Ashby to 16 years in prison; a $10K fine, and 5 years of parole upon his release.

An autopsy concluded that Jack Jacquez died from a single gunshot to the back that struck his spinal cord and pierced his heart and a lung.  Jack was in his home, which he shared with his mother who was home at the time.  Ashby had no reason to enter the house and said that he feared for his life because Jack was holding a baseball bat.  At trial, prosecutors argued that even if Jack was holding a baseball bat, that Ashby’s shooting him in the back evidenced that Ashby was not in fear for his life.

Sources:

The Raw Story

The Denver Post

MSN

Colorado Police Officer Found Guilty of Second-Degree Murder

Thursday night, Jack Jacquez Sr. said he was burning all of the documents he amassed in a case concerning the murder of his son.  He said he was doing it to get the stress from the court proceedings off his chest.

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Jack Jacquez on left, James Ashby on right.

In October 2014, his son, 27-year-old Jack Jacquez, was killed in his mom’s kitchen by Rocky Ford, Colorado police officer James Ashby. Ashby claimed that he thought Jack was a burglar.  However, Jack’s mom, Viola, told The Denver Post that Ashby opened fire on her son inches from her face.

The Colorado Bureau of Investigation reviewed the shooting and decided that Ashby lied about circumstances that led up to and followed the shooting, finding that many of his statements contradicted physical evidence and witness accounts.  Ashby was arrested a month after he killed Jack.  Ashby was charged with second-degree murder.  He was also fired from his job. Read the rest of this entry

The 10 Most Under-reported Black Stories of 2015

Ebony has published “The 10 Most Underreported Black Stories of 2015.   The list is long, so the following are several that I found quite interesting – things I did not know.

Black Lives Matter throws support behind police shooting victim, Zachary Hammond, who was White.

Zachary HammondThe Black Lives Matter movement is serious about the message that police violence is epidemic in America. So race didn’t factor in when they took up the cause of Zachary Hammond, an unarmed, White 19-year-old South Carolina man, who was shot to death by an officer on July 26, 2015 in Seneca, South Carolina.  Black Lives Matter publicly cried out for justice for Hammond, just as they did for so many other cases where Blacks were killed by cops. And just like so many others, the officer in Hammond’s case was not charged. While his family has vowed to continue to fight for justice,  Black Lives Matter has included Hammond’s name in the long list of victims of excessive police brutality.

As Lincoln Blades commented in The Grio, acknowledging the systemic causes of Hammond’s death means “admitting that black folks haven’t been lying or exaggerating when we’ve said that there is a real problem with policing in America.”


Bomb explodes outside Colorado Springs NAACP office Read the rest of this entry

Rocky Ford, CO – Shades Of Ferguson

Last Sunday, James Ashby killed 27-year old Jack Jacquez in Jacquez’s home. No one knows why Ashby came to Jack’s house. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation and the Rocky Ford Police Department have remained silent. That might be due to James Ashby being a police officer.

Jack Vasquez

Jack Jacquez

Jack’s family and friends say that he was shot in the back, but even that news did not come from the police but rather, from workers at the hospital where Jack was taken.

About 200 people got together in the small town of Rocky Ford, Colorado to protest, marching to the police station to get answers. Authorities aren’t talking to them. They are not even telling them what they are doing – but James Ashby is on paid vacation.

 

The protests pattern those in Ferguson. Yes, the nation and the world have embraced the reality that what happened to Michael Brown was wrong. “Hands up. Don’t Shoot” is being repeated in Rocky Ford, CO, and even Hong Kong, because of Michael Brown.  Now, it is no longer Blacks who are marching while chanting “No Justice. No Peace.” People of every color are fed up that cops can kill, go on paid vacation, and authorities are silent, adding to the trauma and grief of victims’ families, friends, their communities – our nation.

People of all walks of life are coming together, but sadly it is because of death by cop.

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Update on 14 Year Old Girl Mistaken As Burglar Killed By Stepfather

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2nd Lt Daniel Meade with his wife and mother of 14 year-old Kiana O’Neil

29 year-old 2nd Lt Daniel Meade has been identified as the man who shot and killed his 14 year-old step-daughter, mistaking her for a burglar.  He is listed as an active-duty health service officer assigned to 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division at Fort Carson.

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Kiana O’Neil

The victim, Kiana O’Neil, is the oldest of three children.  The Daily Mail reports that Kiana may have been trying to enter the house through a basement window.  Kiana was shot in the chest and stomach, and died from the wounds.

Read the rest of this entry

Shooting At Arapahoe High School Near Denver

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Scene outside of Arapahoe High School

A gunman opened fire in Arapahoe High School at about 12:30 p.m. M.T.  The Associated Press quoted a hospital spokesman who said one student was in critical condition.  There are other reports that two have been killed.  CNN just reported that one student shot is in critical condition and the other student suffered minor injuries.  Let’s hope for the best.

Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson said the suspected shooter was dead from what authorities believe is a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Police SWAT teams swarmed the school, which is at the corner of South University Boulevard and Dry Creek Road in Centennial, Colorado. Bomb squads were also called to the scene.

The identity of the suspect and students who were shot have not been made known.

Arapahoe High School is about 8 miles from Columbine High School, where on April 20, 1999, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold murdered 12 students, one teacher, and injured 27 students.   This shooting comes one day before the one-year anniversary of the massacre at Sand Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn.

With these events, more discussion is necessary regarding gun-control in America.

UPDATED

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