Crime

Heather Neville Accused of Killing Man in Argument Over Septic Tank

Was a man shot to death because Heather Neville was upset over a septic-tank hookup? That's the motive floated in reports that followed the arrest of the 59-year-old Neville on suspicion of first-degree murder. The bizarre details below.

See also: Ryan Ronquillo Shooting Deemed Justified, But Family Says Police Murdered Him

The incident took place in the community of Calhan, whose population was recently calculated at 780. The location, according to the El Paso County Sheriff's Office, was the 9800 block of Calhan Highway, north of Judge Orr Road, a remote area captured in the following interactive graphic. If you have any problems seeing the image, click "View Larger Map."


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At 12:21 p.m. on Monday, the EPCSO received a call about a shooting at a nearby residence. Deputies rushed to the scene, but by the time they arrived, the adult male victim was already dead.

There were no shortage of potential witnesses to the crime: Four adults and five children were on hand.

Another man, Scott Hurd, who lived with his wife in an RV parked on the property, was in Colorado Springs when the shooting took place. However, he's provided the most information thus far about what may have happened.

The victim has not yet been identified, but Hurd told the Colorado Springs Gazette he was a 31-year-old named Mike who'd recently moved from Oregon with his girlfriend, her five kids (all of them twelve or younger) and her mom. They, too, had rented land and were living in an RV.

Neville and another woman referred to by Hurd as "Michelle" were living in an RV on the property, as well, suggesting that the "residence" mentioned by the sheriff's office was mobile -- and the women were apparently unhappy about the condition of his septic-tank.

"They didn't like me having a permanent hookup," Hurd noted to the Gazette. He added that one of the women had even pulled a gun during a conversation about it the previous week.

Hurd planned to remedy the situation on Monday by installing a second hookup -- but before he could return with supplies, he says Mike called him to say an argument was underway about the septic line. And then he heard moaning, presumably because Mike had been shot.

Neville is currently being held without bond. Meanwhile, Hurd remains shocked by what took place. To the Gazette, he said, "Life is so valuable. To throw it away over something like this...." And then he shook his head.

Here's a larger look at Heather Neville's booking photo.

Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts