Best of 2012 GJsentinel.com
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED NEWS STORIES ON GJSENTINEL.COM IN 2012
On July 27, a large fire started near De Beque that grew and spread rapidly. Over the next two days, Daily Sentinel reporters gave regular online updates about the fire’s progress, smoke health advisories, road closures and evacuations.
Derrill Rockwell was sentenced in March to five years of probation for shooting and injuring a woman he mistook for a bird. The woman, whose hair was fashioned in a red mohawk, was sitting on top of a hill 90 feet away from Rockwell when he shot her in the head with a .22 caliber rifle. He was ordered to pay $10,000 in restitution to the victim.
The Mesa County Sheriff’s Department and searchers couldn’t believe they missed the body of Paige Birgfeld during their initial search of a desert area just north of Delta in 2007. Her skeletal remains were discovered in early March, nearly five years later. The story included the reaction of Birgfeld’s father, Frank, as he surveyed the scene.
An affidavit acquired by The Daily Sentinel alleged that Heather Jensen admitted leaving her two sons in her Toyota 4Runner for 90 minutes on Grand Mesa before finding them unconscious in the back seat in November. William, 2, died at the scene, and his 4-year-old brother, Tyler, was taken to Children’s Hospital, where he later died.
An act of generosity backfired in August after an Orchard Mesa couple offered their unsellable peaches to the public for free. Unfortunately, some who showed up damaged water pipes and trees and stole other fruit from neighboring orchards.
Three months after a restaurant in Fruita was featured in an episode of The Food Network’s “Restaurant: Impossible,” the owner, Ginny Sullivan, sold the business, citing personal time issues caused by being a single parent.
Marco Antonio Padilla eluded TV personality and bounty hunter Duane ‘Dog’ Chapman but was captured by Mexican police in Guadalajara, Mexico in early February. Padilla had been wanted in Mesa County on charges including conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine. Chapman in September 2008 searched over several weeks in Grand Junction, Denver and Pueblo, while arresting three of Padilla’s cohorts along the way, but Padilla eluded capture.
Boulder resident and nationally known ice climber Jack Roberts died of an apparent heart attack after falling 60 feet on the Bridal Veil Ice Falls near Telluride in early January.
A friend of Tim Sewell’s, a well-known local cyclist who took his own life at Cold Shivers Point on Colorado National Monument on July 3, gave a first-hand account of their friendship as a touching memorial and tribute.
An arrest warrant was issued for convicted killer Douglas Thames Jr. for the 1994 murder of Jacie Taylor in Palisade. Robert Dewey was exonerated of the murder after spending 16 years in prison.