Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Charity Begins at Home

Elected officials in Denver get to do double duty. In celebrity-short Denver, they're in constant demand for do-good events. On Friday night, for example, Denver DA Mitch Morrissey was on deck at Elway's in the Concerts for Kids "celebrity server" event, which raised more than $50,000 for children's charities. The next night, he was at the High Hopes Tribute Dinner, which crammed the ballroom at the downtown Marriott and raised upwards of $700,000 for the Children's Diabetes Foundation.

And then there's Morrissey's real job. The last time he'd worn his tux, the DA said, was for an event downtown last November -- when he got the news that there had been a horrible tragedy downtown, and he left for the scene of what turned out to be the hit-and-run that wiped out Frank Bingham's family.

Today Larry Trujillo, who was driving that truck, and Eric Snell, his passenger,will be sentenced in connection with the deaths of Becca Bingham and the two Bingham children, four-year-old Macie and two-year-old Garrison. In May, Snell pleaded guilty to two counts of accessory to a crime and one count of DUI -- and also agreed to testify against Trujillo, who pleaded guilty in July to thirteen charges, including vechicular homicide, and faces up to 174 years in prison.

Bingham has started his own charities, Bingham Books and the Bingham Memorial Fund, to honor his family. -- Patricia Calhoun

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun