It's a Crime

"It looks as if all of Colorado is burning today,” said then-governor Bill Owens after catching an aerial view of the Hayman arson fire in Southwestern Colorado. Although this wasn’t one of the area’s more notorious crimes, the fact that it was started by a forestry officer burning a letter from her estranged husband adds a few points to the oddity scale.

Certainly, our collective psyche is forever branded with the names Columbine and JonBenét, but other terrible events — like the murder of Darrent Williams — have also made a lasting impression. Today at 2 p.m. at the Aurora Central Library, 14949 East Alameda Parkway in Aurora, High Crimes and Way Beyond Misdemeanors is a chance to explore some of Colorado’s lesser-known brushes with the law. Panelists include mystery novelist Mario Acevedo and Lieutenant Tim DuFour of the Aurora Police Department crime lab. “Both have specific crimes they want to talk about that fascinate them,” says library media contact Carol Foreman. “We’re going to specifically zero in on the murder of Darrent Williams, the Hayman fire and the embezzler Michelle Cawthra. They’ll be talking about the crimes, what events lead up to the crimes, and what could have made people think they would get away with such a thing. Also, Lieutenant DuFour is going to talk about what steps the police take to investigate these types of crimes.” Audience questions are encouraged.

Admission is free; for more information, call 303-739-6600 or go to
Sun., Oct. 5, 2 p.m., 2008

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Mark Dragotta