Ken Buck ran afoul of the GLBT community whenhe likened being gay to alcoholism on Meet the Press
, promptingactivists to demand a retraction
. So is Buck prejudiced? He didn't appear to be in April 2009 when, as Weld County DA, his office successfully prosecuted a case that advocates said was the first time a state hate crime statute resulted in a conviction in a transgender person's murder -- a victory he hasn't mentioned during his campaign.
As DA, Buck charged a man named Allen Andrade with first-degree murder for the 2008 bludgeoning death of Angie Zapata, an eighteen-year-old transgender Greeley resident. He also charged Andrade with a bias-motivated crime, arguing that Andrade killed Zapata because she was transgender. A jury agreed, and Andrade was sentenced to life in prison.
For more on the trial, read Westword's live blog of the proceedings and our feature, "Seven Unanswered Questions About the Trial of Angie Zapata's Killer."
After the verdicts were read, Buck held a press conference. "Greeley, Colorado is an incredibly tolerant community," he told the gathered reporters, some of whom were transgender. "The one thing we don't tolerate are violent acts toward our citizens."
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
See video of the entire press conference below:
More from our Politics archive: "Ken Buck's last name rhymes with 'Shmuck' and that's no hoax (like global warming)."