Category archive

Crime - page 4

Dirt Bikers Cause Significant Damage In Grand Teton National Park

in Crime/News/Recreation
5407

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Group Causes Significant Damage to Historic Hay Field

National Park Service investigators are looking for information related to activities that caused significant resource damage along historic Mormon Row in Grand Teton National Park recently.Anyone with information that could help identify any of the individuals involved or was in the area around 8 p.m. on July 18 and can provide any information regarding this activity, please call or text the National Park Service Investigative Services Branch Tip Line at 888-653-0009 or email nps_isb@nps.gov. Information can be provided anonymously. https://www.nps.gov/grte/learn/news/group-causes-significant-damage-to-historic-hay-field.htm

Grand Teton National Park இடுகையிட்ட தேதி: புதன், 22 ஜூலை, 2020

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

National Park Service investigators are looking for information regarding a motocross event that caused significant resource damage to the Mormon Row area of Grand Teton National Park last week.

According to a news release, the Teton Interagency Dispatch Center received a call around 8:45 p.m. on July 18 about a group of people riding dirt bikes in an open field and operating a drone along Mormon Row.

According to the reporting party and a video captured via cell phone, approximately 50 people were in the area attending the organized dirt bike event.

The group prepared its own riding course, but began to break down the course and load the motorcycles just as the reporting party called the park. The group’s actions were recorded by the person who reported the incident.

Park rangers immediately responded to the scene, but the group had already left the area, leaving behind approximately 1,000 feet of track with a width of 2 to 10 feet.

The event was not authorized and caused significant damage to an area officials have been trying to restore as a sagebrush steppe habitat.

The hay fields along Mormon Row are part of a 10-year project that began in 2014 to remove non-native grasses and replant the area with 37 species of native plants to restore the site to a sagebrush steppe habitat. The project is a collaborative effort between the National Park Service, Grand Teton National Park Foundation, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and Teton Conservation District.

The various agencies had invested several years of effort into the project, removing invasive plants and seeding the native species. The area damaged by the motorcycle riders had been reseeded just last year.

The area is an important habitat for elk, bison, pronghorn, moose, sage grouse and a variety of other wildlife, which all depend on the sagebrush steppe.

Operating a motor vehicle off roadways is a crime and those convicted can face a fine of up to $5,000 and/or up to six months imprisonment. Additionally, the System Unit Resource Protection Act provides that any person or instrumentality that destroys, causes the loss of or injures, of any National Park Service resource is liable for response costs and damages.  

Anyone with information that could help identify any of the individuals involved or was in the area around 8 p.m. on July 18 and can provide any information regarding this activity is asked to call or text the National Park Service Investigative Services Branch Tip Line at 888-653-0009 or email the agency. Information can be provided anonymously.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Laramie Teen Charged With Manslaughter

in Crime/News
5385

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

A Laramie teenager has been charged with manslaughter after shooting a 13-year-old Tuesday morning.

According to a news release posted to the Laramie Police Department Facebook page, officers responded to the report of a shooting around 1:30 a.m. on Tuesday.

The 13-year-old male victim was transported to Ivinson Memorial Hospital and later to a Denver hospital, where he later died.

As a result of the investigation, a 14-year-old male was arrested and charged with manslaughter. The boy is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Since this is a juvenile matter, court processes and sentencing will vary.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Wild High-Speed Chase Ends After Highway Patrol Uses Spike Strips & Rams Vehicle

in Crime/News
File photo
5383

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

On Monday, July 20, 2020, a Sheridan, Wyoming resident led WHP Troopers and Sheridan County Deputies on a pursuit east of Sheridan, Wyoming.

The pursuit began after officers were called to the Sheridan Wal-Mart to take a report of an assault. Officers with the Sheridan Police Department were able to locate the suspect vehicle, a 2002 Jeep, as it was leaving. The driver of the Jeep failed to stop for officers and fled east on Wyoming 336.

Wyoming Highway Patrol Troopers and Sheridan County Deputies responded east on Wyoming 336 to check for the suspect vehicle a short time later. 

Deputies spotted the vehicle traveling at 100 mph headed west on Wyoming 336 towards Sheridan. 

Deputies attempted to stop the vehicle a second time, but the driver failed to stop. WHP Troopers were able to successfully deploy spike strips to deflate the suspect vehicle’s tires around milepost one on Wyoming 336. 

The suspect vehicle continued to drive on deflated tires towards the city limits of Sheridan. A WHP Trooper, now behind the suspect vehicle, noticed children in the area of the pursuit. 

Due to the extreme behavior of the suspect and imminent threat to public safety, the Trooper decided to end the pursuit by forcing his patrol vehicle into the suspect’s vehicle. 

The vehicle was disabled a short distance later.

The driver of the vehicle was identified as 32-year-old Sheridan, Wyoming resident Cody A. Zack. Instead of Zack exiting his vehicle as instructed, he made gestures with a knife, as if to harm himself. 

After talking with Zack for an extended time, law enforcement was able to take him into custody without further incident.

Mr. Zack is facing multiple traffic charges, and numerous felony charges are pending.

Sheridan County Sheriff’s Office is the lead agency investigating this incident.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Sheridan Family With Special Needs Child Stranded In Denver After Car Stolen

in Crime/News
5267

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

A Sheridan family has been stranded in Denver since Saturday after a thief stole their wheelchair-accessible van.

The family of Lane Fischer reached out to Contact7, a part of the Denver Channel, over the weekend to ask for help. The family traveled to Denver for a doctor’s appointment for their young son Lane, who has Down Syndrome.

The family woke up Saturday morning to discover their 1996 Chevrolet van had been stolen, along with much of Lane’s equipment, including “two vents and a vent stand and an oxygen concentrator,” as well as five oxygen tanks.

“It is heartbreaking that someone would even think to take, even if it wasn’t his, any handicapped vehicle,” Yvonne Fischer said. “I just don’t understand.”

The vehicle was stolen from a hotel parking lot in east Denver sometime Friday night. The family uses it regularly to travel for Lane’s appointments in both Colorado and Montana.

Without the van and equipment, the family is unable to return home to Sheridan. They have also been unsuccessful in renting a van for the time being.

“At any point, [Lane] could stop breathing,” Yvonne Fischer said.

People looking to help the Fischer family with donations can follow this link, and use the drop down menu to choose “Help Replace Stolen Handicap Van.”

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Barrasso: Police Reform is Possible if Democrats Don’t Filibuster

in Crime/News
4996

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

U.S. Sen. John Barrasso on Monday expressed cautious optimism for passage of federal police reform legislation if politics don’t get in the way.

Appearing on CNN, Barrasso told John King that approval for bipartisan legislation to enact police reform looks promising because the House bill and the Senate bill agree on so much.

“There is about a 70% overlap and agreement on these bills,” Barrasso said. “This is a good place to start.”

“With body cameras on officers, with doing the sorts of things that eliminate bad police officers, and giving the good cops the resources that they need, the accountability, the training, all of sorts of things that you have better results on the streets,” he said.

One sticking point has been the issue of qualified immunity — a legal doctrine created through court rulings that shields police officers from civil lawsuits. 

When asked if that issue could be on the table, Barrasso punted while signaling his distaste for it.

“That’s a legal term and it has to do with how many police officers we can sue.  And I want to find out how many people we can save in terms of saving their lives,” he said.

Still, the senator said he was optimistic because of bipartisan efforts made recently with the CARES Act for the coronavirus epidemic and the Great American Outdoors Act to support deferred maintenance projects on federal lands.

He also said there is a real spirit of bipartisanship in the weekly Senate prayer breakfast he attends. 

“We have a history of doing bipartisan legislation,” Barrasso said.  “We need to make sure the Democrats don’t filibuster and Chuck Schumer has been threatening that.”

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Good News: Wyoming Fifth-Safest State in Country

in Crime/News
4743

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily

Wyoming has been ranked as the fifth-safest state in the nation by the personal finance website WalletHub.

The state’s status as having the third highest number of law enforcement employees per capita in the nation helped with its fifth-place overall ranking, which put it directly behind Utah and directly ahead of Iowa.

WalletHub said it looked at 53 key safety indicators in five categories to determine the threats faced by state residents from a number of sources, including roadway deaths, workplace fatalities and the coronavirus.

The company said the information it relied on for its rankings included state coronavirus response, assaults per capita, unemployment rates, the percentage of adults with “rainy day funds” and the rate of bullying.

With its high number of law enforcement officers, Wyoming placed sixth for the category of “personal and residential safety,” which also took into consideration a state’s number of mass shootings, assaults, thefts and other crimes per capita and the incidence of bullying.

In the category of financial safety, which looked at items such as the number of uninsured people in the state, unemployment rates, foreclosure rates and personal debt, Wyoming ranked 15th. 

For road safety, which looked at factors such as fatal accidents and charges of driving while under the influence of intoxicants, the state was in 16th place, the report said.

Wyoming was in 20th place for workplace safety, due largely to its rank as having one of the nation’s worst ratings for fatal occupational injuries per capita. Wyoming placed 48th in that area, sharing the ranking with North Dakota and Alaska.

Except for Utah, surrounding states trailed Wyoming. Idaho was ranked the 20th-safest place, Nebraska 30th, Colorado 36th, Montana 38th and South Dakota 40th.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Wyoming Coronavirus: Overall Police Calls Decrease But Car Break-Ins Skyrocket

in Coronavirus/Crime/News
4199

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

By Ike Fredregill, Cowboy State Daily

With few exceptions, police call volumes are down during the pandemic in Wyoming’s two largest cities, Casper and Cheyenne police departments reported.

In Casper, vehicle break-ins skyrocketed since March 16, but assaults, patrol arrests and restraining order violations dropped significantly, said Rebekah Ladd, the Casper Police Department’s public information officer.

“The biggest thing we’re seeing are those auto burglaries,” Ladd said. “We’ve seen several homeowner’s security videos with people walking down the street pulling on car handles until they find one open.” 

From March 16 through April 17, calls labeled by dispatch as auto burglaries increased 18% and calls labeled burglary non-residential, which can include cars, sheds or outbuildings, increased 100%, she said.

Unlocked cars grant criminals unprecedented access to a number of valuables, and in some cases, firearms, Ladd said.

“Criminals aren’t likely stealing firearms to go hunting,” she said. “The No. 1 thing you can do is lock your car. In this way, we can literally disarm criminals.”

Overall calls for service in Casper were down 30%, according to Casper PD data. Calls labeled assault by dispatch were down 32%, residential burglary decreased 32% and Family Violence Protection Act calls, which include restraining order violations, were down 50%.

Patrol arrests also decreased with juvenile arrests dropping 82% and adult arrests falling by 51%.

“We’re really proud of our community,” Ladd said.  “Our call volume is down significantly. We’re really seeing people listening to state officials and taking the advice to stay home.” 

About 175 miles southeast in the Capital, David Inman, public information officer for the Cheyenne Police Department, said his department also experienced a decrease in call volume.

Inman did not have data on hand at the time of the interview, but anecdotally, he said Cheyenne has not seen a rise in burglaries of any type.

“Our violent crime — we don’t have much anyway — has gone down as far as assaults,” Inman said. “Domestic dispute calls have gone up, but that is just calls. Those don’t always indicate an assault. In many cases, it’s just two people yelling at each other loud enough for the neighbors to call us.”

Shoplifting remained at normal levels throughout the pandemic, but it was the outlier, he said.

“We’re associating the decreases with people staying inside more,” Inman said. 

As COVID-19 spreads throughout the state, both Casper and Cheyenne police departments reported they are approaching call responses with cautionary measures, such as face masks and medical gloves.

***For All Things Wyoming, Sign-Up For Our Daily Newsletter***

Go to Top