Local Briefs, Oct. 6, 2017

Sex assault charges were likely dropped

    Prosecutors who handled the case of a man accused of sexually assaulting a child in Mesa County last year appear to have dropped charges against him.

Ronald Bert Keele was 46 when he was arrested in July 2016 on suspicion of 15 sexual assault-related charges, according to earlier reports.

It appears that those charges may have been dropped and the case dismissed and sealed by a judge.

Mesa County prosecutor Bo Zeerip, who handled Keele’s case initially, said he couldn’t confirm or deny anything about the case. He wrote in an email that ethically, once a case is sealed, he’s prohibited from talking about it.

No sexual assault-related case regarding Ronald Keele was found by Mesa County court clerk’s employees who searched efiling systems; a clerk who performed the search said that once a case is sealed, it will no longer show up in court records searches.

Delia Funk, a friend of Keele’s, wrote in an email that charges against him were dismissed Jan. 23, and that Keele is moving forward from the past.

“He just wants his life back,” Funk wrote in an email.

Keele was represented at the outset of the case by Grand Junction defense attorney Gordon Gallagher.

Food Bank gets $1,000 toward freezer


Each year, one partner of the Food Bank of the Rockies in Denver — among more than 600 relief partners in 30 Colorado counties — is selected to receive additional assistance from the food bank to help reach more hungry people.

This year, Community Food Bank in Grand Junction, 562 W. Crete Circle, No. 102, was selected as FBR’s Peak Partner for providing exemplary service to those in need in our community.

As a result of the award, Community Food Bank received $1,000 to help with the purchase of a new three-door freezer.

“This capacity gift will increase the food bank’s ability to distribute nutritious food to meet demand,” said Community Food Bank Executive Director Darcy Johnson in a statement. “A commercial freezer will reduce energy costs, ensure safe storage and provide a more efficient and effective means of food distribution.”

Wreaths Across America needs sponsors


The Western Slope Patriot Guard Riders and Wreaths Across America are looking for sponsors for their 2017 annual drive to place 2,300 wreaths at the Veterans Memorial Cemetery of Western Colorado during Christmastime. Cost is $15 per wreath. If you would like to sponsor one or more live wreaths, call Art Edwards at 250-1174 or email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Art wanted for Fruita Community Center


The Fruita Parks and Recreation Department calls for artists to submit proposals for their artwork to hang at the Fruita Community Center. Proposals should be submitted no later than 4 p.m. Tuesday at the City of Fruita Parks and Recreation Department, 324 N. Coulson St. Artwork may be submitted as images on a CD, thumb drive, or a portfolio (physical binder or folder with photographs of artwork) or website.

Proposals will be evaluated by the Fruita Arts and Culture Board. Selections will be made Wednesday. Art will hang Nov. 1 through January. For artist release documents, go to fruita.org/acb.


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