Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

The Cold, Hard Facts

Two weeks later than originally promised, Beauprez for Governor finally unsealed its Cold Case files critical of Bill Ritter's performance as Denver District Attorney. But in the days between the initial announcement and the actual delivery of those files, their contents took a hard turn to the right.

At first, Republican research focused on the DA's plea bargains in drunk-driving cases -- but when those didn't take hold with the press (or with the parents of victims who were unaware they'd become political pawns, as detailed in "Cold, Very Cold," a recent column), the campaign changed course.

The cold-case files now concentrate on plea deals for aliens, both legal and illegal. And immigration is a topic that definitely plays better with the public than a wronged party who's done wrong herself. September Dixon (pictured) was always a dubious choice to be the star of the Trailhead-funded TV commercial bashing Ritter for making a deal with the driver who'd killed her four-year-old in a hit-and-run back in 2000. The case would have had problems at trial, and Dixon herself had signed off on the plea before changing her mind.

Car problems seem to be a trend for Dixon. After KHOW raised funds for her two remaining kids, she used half of the money to buy a car for her then-boyfriend. And now she's facing charges for trying to run down an her ex-boyfriend in Adams County.

Steer clear of this one. -- Patricia Calhoun

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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