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Lander Woman Attacked And Blinded At Hospital Dies

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A 72-year-old Lander area woman who was attacked and blinded Thanksgiving morning at Sage West Hospital in Lander has died.  

Elaine Tillman had been life-flighted to Salt Lake City shortly after the brutal attack and died there Wednesday morning.  

A 53-year-old Dubois man, Patrick Rose, remains in the Fremont County jail on a $250,000 cash-only bond. He is being held on aggravated assault charges.

An autopsy was performed in Salt Lake City on Thursday. 

The Fremont County Attorney’s Office on Friday acknowledged in a statement it was aware of Tillman’s death.

“We are currently in contact with medical professionals in Utah and are reviewing more serious charging. As soon as we receive the out of state medical reports we will make a final charging determination,” the statement read.

According to media reports, a nurse was outside of Rose’s room when “he ran out of the room, rushed into the next room, and jumped on the elderly female patient before (the nurse) could react.”

Reasons for the attack are unknown but the Associated Press reported that Rose may have stopped taking medication

“People who take psychotropic medications and suffer from mental illness have a tendency to believe they don’t need to take the medication and then quit taking them, and then things go wrong from them,” Lander Circuit Court Judge Robert Denhardt said.

Rose told the judge he had a traumatic brain injury.

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Man Who Looks Like Grimace From McDonald’s Robs Cheyenne Stores

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The Cheyenne Police Department is looking for a man who looks surprisingly similar to Grimace, the popular McDonald’s character from the 70s and 80s, for committing a string of burglaries in the Cheyenne area.

Our friends at KGAB radio report that Grimace the individual is suspected of burglarizing Starbucks, Panera Bread, and Chipotle back in early November.

Whether this individual actually looks like Grimace is unknown because he is — per the Wyoming Health Department — wearing a mask.

The alleged perpetrator’s body, however, is a perfect match for that of Grimace.

It is unlikely that if arrested he would receive a reduced charge because he’s following the mask mandate but authorities can cross that bridge if and when they come to it.

If there is any good news to report, it’s that the individual could have lucrative employment possibilities if he decides to forego a life of crime.

There have been persistent rumors that McDonald’s might be bringing back the Grimace character. He was officially retired — along with the Hamburglar — back in 2003.

The Hamburglar was reintroduced in 2015 and, according to media reports, was a complete disaster.

Perhaps, if Grimace is brought back, our Cheyenne burglar is the likely replacement as he wouldn’t have to go to the gym or anything.  He’s perfect.

Also, the Wyoming Department of Health could use his image, perhaps, as an example of mask-wearing. He could contract with the State of Wyoming and start a whole new life.

In the meantime, if you know who this Grimace-like individual is, contact Crime Stoppers at 307.638.TIPS.

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Casper Woman Arrested For Making Terroristic Threats At Two Walmart Locations

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

The Casper Police Department arrested a woman last week in connection with terroristic threats made to two Walmart locations, one of which was her employer, earlier this year.

Kaylee Shain was arrested on Friday on one felony charge of making threats, according to an announcement from the Casper Police Department on social media.

On Aug. 18, the CPD and other local law enforcement agencies responded to both Walmart locations in town regarding the report of bomb threats.

Two employees reported receiving text messages from unknown numbers. The messages claimed there were bombs inside the two locations and they would be set off at 7 p.m.

The sender also claimed in the messages that they were “after everyone” and also had firearms.

After the two employees shared these messages, both of the Walmart locations were evacuated. After a thorough search of both locations, officers could not identify a valid threat at either scene.

After speaking with employees, the officers determined the texts were sent using a voice-over IP number, a phone number issued over the internet instead of through a cellular carrier. These are regularly used by scammers and people who wish to remain anonymous while participating in criminal activities.

Detectives were suspicious that the two employees knew more about the messages and obtained search warrants to find out more.

One of the employees, Shain, confessed to sending the messages to herself and the co-worker because of the personal satisfaction she would gain due to the disruption the threat would cause.

Detectives also found evidence on her cell phone as well as the VOIP and her internet provider that proved Shain was the owner of the account that sent the threatening messages.

“Making any type of terroristic threat in our community is not acceptable,” said Casper Police Detective Jesse Jones. “Incidents such as this not only cause unnecessary fear, panic, and a sense of insecurity in our community, it costs thousands of dollars in emergency personnel time and resources to respond to and investigate. We simply cannot allow incidents such as this to go ignored. The Casper Police Department is proud to be able to offer our community highly professional investigative services to not only find the suspects but create a case that holds them accountable in court.”

After an extensive and thorough investigation, Shain was arrested.

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Manhunt in Eastern Idaho Results in Gang Member Arrest

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If there were a criminal’s handbook, you would think they would have a section on tattoos and how they make criminals more identifiable.

Matthew James Wright, for example, might have missed that chapter.

He was arrested Saturday morning by the Pocatello, Idaho, police department after the U.S. Marshal’s Service launched a manhunt for the fugitive who was wanted for federal probation violations.

Turns out he has four felony convictions for possession of firearms.

Unfortunately for Wright, his head, face, and neck look like the front of a grafittied building — a badly graffitied building.

So when the feds launched the manhunt on Friday, it should come as little surprise that he was found only hours later.

Also of no surprise, he was arrested for allegedly committing more crimes.  Wright apparently didn’t read the chapter on stealing vehicles and how trying to escape the police after smashing into other cars — thereby disabling your vehicle — and then trying to run away on foot is a lose-lose situation.

He proved that chapter correct on Saturday morning when he did all of the above for a vaunted criminal’s trifecta.

Perhaps things would have gone better for Wright had he associated with different people. He could have joined the Kiwanis or the Lion’s Club or maybe Rotary.

Instead he chose the Sureños — an organization really not known for civic-minded projects like cleaning up parks or giving food to the needy.  Instead, this group — very well established in prisons — excels at distributing drugs and murdering people.

Apparently Wright has an accurate nickname, according to the U.S. Marshal’s Service.  He’s known as “Dopie.”

The U.S. Marshal’s Service said everyone should “rest easy” now that Dopie is back in his home environment.

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Man Smashes Truck Into Cheyenne Church in Broad Daylight; Then, Thinking He’s Invisible, Drives Away

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If there were a criminal handbook, you would think the chapter on the fallacy of getting away with a “hit and run” would be read more often.

Apparently a man who smashed into a Cheyenne church did not read that chapter nor did he read about the individual in Worland last week who smashed into a parked car and then took off — only to be caught immediately after the police department posted the video captured by a doorbell cam.

Instead the individual who ran his truck into a church in broad daylight at a busy intersection and then took off — must think he and his green truck were made out of the same material as Wonder Woman’s invisible plane.

The only glitch with his ingenious escape plan is that neither he nor his 20+ year-old green Dodge Durango were invisible and people in the area all had functioning eyes.

As a result, the Cheyenne Police Department knows the accident happened at 9:04am on Friday. They know the church he inexplicably hit was the Cheyenne Baptist Temple. They know the truck was a green Dodge Durango (a really poor color selection for criminals). They know his truck was made from 1996 – 2002.  They know the individual is a “young male adult wearing a gray sweatshirt and blue jeans.”

Now, while his description is fairly common, his dumb, damaged green truck is not.

That means if he’s from Cheyenne, some people know who he is. Other people have seen or will see the damaged green truck.

And yes, he can hide his green truck. And if he’s a body shop whiz, then he’s got that going for him.

And if he’s from out of town, perhaps he limped his green truck home to wherever he lives.

Our guess is it’s only a matter of days.  And what was once probably just one charge is now a multiple of charges.

He could face jail time, suspension of his license, financial penalties, and his car insurance (assuming he has insurance — which based on his apparent IQ is unlikely) will not pay for the damage.

Not to mention there will tons of lawyers who will very happily want to represent the church.

If you know who this idiot individual might be, just contact the Cheyenne Police Department.

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Doorbell Camera Catches Moron Committing Hit-And-Run in Worland; Apprehended Immediately

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If there were a criminal handbook, you would think there would be a chapter on the prevalence of video cams and how they really are everywhere.

Maybe one moron thought Washakie County was somehow exempt from technology and they wouldn’t have to worry about it.

They thought wrong.

Turns out a simple doorbell camera took the footage which shows a white four door pickup truck smashing into a parked vehicle which then smashed into a trailer and then quickly leaving the scene.

Added bonus, the doorbell-cam recorded the sound.

Not only did the police have video of the crash itself but they knew exactly what time it happened. 

Then they could post the video (which they did) and enlist the public’s help (which they did) and within two hours the suspected moron was captured.

“Thanks to the public’s help on this,” the post said.  “We appreciate the community’s support with helping us solve this.

“It was fortunate that the homeowner had a doorbell camera in this incident which was very helpful with giving us a direction to go with this investigation,” the police department said.

Had the offending moron stopped and called the police, perhaps they wouldn’t face a laundry list of charges.

Hit-and-run is never a good charge to try to beat — especially when all the evidence is on video.

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Granger, Wyoming Mayor Arrested For Allegedly Stealing Town Funds

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

The mayor of a small Sweetwater County town is facing charges after allegedly using its funds for his own gains.

Granger Mayor Bradly McCollum was arrested Thursday on a warrant for suspected felony theft and the wrongful appropriation of public property.

McCollum, 55, is alleged to have used one of the town’s bank cards for at least four separate personal purchases totaling more than 1,300 of a six-month period in 2019, according to an announcement from the Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office.

These purchases included tires for a personally-owned vehicle, fuel and replacement parts for a furnace at McCollum’s rental property in New York. Sheriff’s detectives have been investigating the case for month, and have examined McCollum’s personal banking records and cross-referencing them with the town’s official financial statements.

McCollum was elected mayor of Granger in 2018.

In Wyoming, the wrongful appropriation of public property is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than one year, a fine of not more than $1,000, or both. Theft in excess of $1,000 is a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than ten years, a fine of not more than $10,000, or both. 

McCollum remains in custody at the Sweetwater County Detention Center awaiting his initial appearance in court.

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Wolf Illegally Killed In Grand Teton National Park

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

The National Park Service is investigating the illegal killing of a wolf in Grand Teton National Park.

National Park Service investigators are seeking information regarding the shooting of the wolf, which was collared and described as black-colored. Its body was found near the park’s Pilgrim Creek Trailhead on Oct. 26.

By placing radio collars on wolves, researchers can track the animals’ movements, finding out where they reside in the winter and other information while still allowing the wolves to roam free inside the national parks.

The illegal taking of wildlife is a violation and subject to a fine up to $5,000 and/or up to six months imprisonment.  Additionally, it is a violation to aid or assist in the illegal taking of wildlife and is also subject to a fine up to $5,000 and/or six months imprisonment.

Anyone with information that could help identify any of the individuals involved or was in the area of the Pilgrim Creek Trailhead the morning of Oct. 26 and can provide any information regarding this activity, call or text the National Park Service Investigative Services Branch Tip Line at 888-653-0009. Information can be provided anonymously.   

The Investigative Services Branch assists units of the National Park Service with the immediate and long-term protection of park resources, visitors, assets, employees and residents. 

They accomplish this through detection, investigation, apprehension, and successful prosecution of persons who violate laws of the United States while within, or while affecting, the National Park System.

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South Dakota AG Was Distracted During Fatal Collision

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg was distracted when he fatally struck a man with his vehicle in September while returning home from an event, officials announced Monday.

The announcement came during a news conference with South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem and South Dakota Department of Public Safety cabinet Secretary Craig Price.

Price said investigators are still trying to determine what type of distraction caused Ravnsborg to take his eyes off the road in the Sept. 12 accident. He also said the victim, 55-year-old Joseph Boever, was walking along the shoulder of the road when he was hit.

Price wouldn’t say where Boever’s body ended up.

Much of the investigation into the crash has been completed, with more information expected in the next few weeks.

A reporter asked Noem whether she called for Ravnsborg’s resignation from the AG’s office, but she said she was going to refrain from expressing her personal opinions until the investigation was complete.

The crash report and a photo of Ravnsborg’s vehicle taken a couple days after the crash were also released on Monday by South Dakota officials. The toxicology reports and 911 call were released by South Dakota DPS last month.

In the 911 call, the dispatcher asked Ravnsborg if he possibly struck a deer and he responded that he did not know, later adding that it could have been a deer and that it was right in the roadway.

The toxicology reports showed no drugs or alcohol were found in Ravnsborg’s system, although it should be noted that he took his first toxicology screening more than 12 hours after the collision.

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Supreme Court Upholds Case Against Man Arrested For Stealing Two Cars in Two Days

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By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily

A man who was charged with stealing a car in Fremont County while being held on another car theft charge in Natrona County was properly tried for the crime, Wyoming’s Supreme Court has ruled.

The court upheld the convictions of Ronald Wayne Crebs III, rejecting his arguments that Fremont County prosecutors took too long to bring him to trial in January 2020 on charges stemming from the October 2017 incident.

According to the opinion, written by Justice Kari Gray, Crebs was arrested on Oct. 2, 2017, after leading Fremont County Sheriff’s Office officers on a high-speed chase from Fremont County to Natrona County.

Crebs, who was held in the Natrona County Detention Center after his arrest, admitted to stealing the car in Fremont County and to stealing another one the day before in Natrona County.

Crebs was charged by Natrona County authorities on Oct. 4, 2017, and jailed pending his trial. On Dec. 7, 2017, Fremont County authorities charged Crebs with the vehicle theft in their county and asked that they be notified if Crebs was released from the Natrona County jail so they could serve him with an arrest warrant.

After eight months in jail, Crebs pleaded guilty in Natrona County and was sentenced to up to seven years in prison. 

In April 2019, about 18 months after his arrest in Natrona County, Crebs asked that the charges against him in Fremont County be dismissed because officials there had not acted on the charges, violating his constitutional right to a speedy trial. Fremont County officials then began the process to put Crebs on trial.

In January of this year, more than two years after his initial arrest, Crebs pleaded guilty to the Fremont County car theft on the condition he could pursue his claim that Fremont County officials violated his rights to a speedy trial.

Justices found that the 761-day delay in holding Crebs’ Fremont County trial did merit a review.

However, justices also ruled that Crebs was responsible for at least part of that delay because of his trial in Natrona County.

“Mr. Crebs violated the laws in multiple counties and bears the burden of the delay caused by his prosecution in another county,” the ruling said.

The ruling also said that Fremont County authorities, through negligence, failed to act as quickly as they could have in Crebs’ trial, but justices also found that Crebs failed to prove that failure prejudiced the case against him.

“Our ultimate inquiry in assessing a speedy trial claim is whether the delay ‘substantially impaired the right of the accused to a fair trial,’” the opinion said. “Mr. Crebs’ right to a fair trial was not impaired.”

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