Elise Schmelzer, The Denver Post

Elise Schmelzer

The Denver Post

Denver, CO, United States

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Recent articles by Elise:

Protesters, demonstration leaders arrested in connection to rallies in Aurora

Six protesters face criminal charges in connection to protests in Aurora, including some of the leaders of the demonstrations, prosecutors announced Thursday. → Read More

Gang killings in Denver spike as instability and internal conflicts cause bloodshed

A surge of gang violence in Denver has claimed the lives of 16 people so far this year as members battle internally for power and pandemic-induced instability gives gangs more recruiting power. → Read More

Denver police provide more details about the three people they’ve shot and killed in the past week

Denver police shot and killed three people over the last week and on Wednesday gave more details of what prompted the shootings. → Read More

Ethics board dismisses complaint against Councilwoman CdeBaca filed by Denver police officer

The Denver Board of Ethics on Tuesday dismissed a complaint filed by a Denver police officer against City Councilwoman Candi CdeBaca regarding the councilwoman's actions during a protest of the removal of a homeless encampment. → Read More

Denver police officer suspended for Tasing man in the back after he was handcuffed

A Denver police officer will lose 30 days of work for unnecessarily punching a man in the face and then Tasing the man in the back after he was already handcuffed. → Read More

Aurora bans emergency responders’ use of ketamine until Elijah McClain investigation complete

Aurora City Council banned the city’s emergency responders from using ketamine until an independent investigation into the death of Elijah McClain is complete. → Read More

Call police for a woman who is changing clothes in an alley? A new program in Denver sends mental health professionals instead.

Since its launch June 1, the STAR van has responded to more than 350 calls, replacing police in matters that don’t threaten public safety and are often connected to unmet mental or physical needs. The goal is to connect people who pose no danger with services and resources while freeing up police to respond to other calls. The team, who is not armed, has not yet had to call police for backup,… → Read More

Colorado's largest police union endorses Donald Trump for president

Colorado's largest police union on Friday endorsed President Donald Trump for a second term. → Read More

Denver leaders had big plans to curb youth violence in 2019, but a pandemic and bureaucracy got in the way.

A pandemic, city bureaucracy and vacancies in one of the Denver's key violence prevention organizations combined to stymie citywide efforts to combat rising youth violence over the past year, even as the number of young people killed in homicides this year surpasses the death toll of 2019. → Read More

Hundreds gather with Elijah McClain’s family to remember him one year after fatal police encounter

Elijah McClain's family and their supporters gathered Sunday evening to remember the young man on the eve of the anniversary of the day he was rendered unconscious by Aurora police and paramedics. → Read More

The world knows his name now: One year later, how Elijah McClain’s death impacted his friends and catalyzed a movement

Since his death nearly a year ago, Elijah McClain’s family and those who stood with them have watched rallies in honor of Elijah grow in attendance from a few dozen to several thousand. Community members previously not involved in protests and activism are finding their voice and marching in the streets. McClain’s face and name have been painted in murals, printed on t-shirts, projected on… → Read More

Colorado congressional candidate removes Elijah McClain’s name from event after request from family

A Republican candidate running to represent Aurora in the U.S. House of Representatives removed Elijah McClain's name from an event he was hosting after the family said he didn't have permission to use it. → Read More

Castle Rock man indicted along with ex-Trump adviser Steve Bannon in border wall scheme

Former White House adviser Steve Bannon was arrested Thursday on charges that he and three others ripped off donors to an online fundraising scheme “We Build The Wall.” → Read More

More Denver immigrants could face deportation without a lawyer due to shortfall in city legal aid fund

Hundreds of Denver residents face an immigration judge without a lawyer because there is no public defender system in immigration court. Even more people could soon be added to that tally due to a shortfall in money for the city's Legal Services Fund, which helps immigrants fight removal and apply for legal residence. → Read More

Caden McWilliam’s mother sentenced to 32 years in prison for horrific abuse that led to 7-year-old’s death

The mother of a Denver elementary school student will spend up to 32 years in prison for failing to protect her son from horrific abuse and for helping to hide the boy's body by filling the dog crate the boy died in with cement. → Read More

Six children among nine shot at Denver park on Sunday

The shooting happened at about 4:30 p.m. while a group was gathered in the park having a picnic, according to police and witness accounts. → Read More

Aurora police chief says department culture has been “reset” but acknowledges uphill battle ahead

Aurora's new police chief says the internal cultural of the embattled police department she now leads has been reset, but acknowledges that she and her officers face an uphill battle to regain community trust. → Read More

Vanessa Wilson named Aurora’s new police chief following 10-1 council vote

Aurora leaders on Monday hired Vanessa Wilson to be the city's new police chief -- the first woman to hold the position. → Read More

Aurora homicides up 53% compared to last year; no easy explanation for rise in violence

Twenty-three people have been killed in Aurora homicides so far this year -- up 53% from the 15 people killed in the same time period last year and more than the 18 people killed in all of 2018, according to department data. In the first six months of the year, every category of major crime except sexual assault is up over the first six months of 2019. → Read More

After year of controversy, who should lead the Aurora Police Department?

Whomever the city manager chooses to step into the role will take over a department recently thrust into the national spotlight for the death of 23-year-old Elijah McClain at the hands of three of its officers all while navigating a national conversation about the future of policing. → Read More