BC-CO--Colorado News Digest, CO

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Associated Press

Posted on January 31, 2013 at 2:00 PM

The supervisor is Colleen Slevin, followed by Catherine Tsai. Reruns of stories are available from http://www.apexchange.com, from the Service Desk (877-836-9477) or by calling the Denver bureau at 800-332-6917 or 303-825-0123. Jim Clarke (jclarke(at)ap.org) is chief of bureau. Jim Anderson (janderson(at)ap.org) is news editor.

Please send news stories and tips via the electronic carbon system. You may also email them to apdenver(at)ap.org (ASCII text only, no attachments) or fax them to 303-892-5927. The bureau's email address is apdenver(at)ap.org.

Please contribute photos via FTP to the State Photo Center. To speak to a photo editor there, call 888-APFOTOS.

AP VIDEO:

COLO_BLIND_SKIER — U.S. Paralympic skier Danelle Limstead, who is visually impaired, is pursuing a gold medal at next year's games. With BC-US--Blind Skiers. By Peter Banda.

AROUND COLORADO:

WINTER X-MOORE

DENVER — Caleb Moore, an innovative freestyle snowmobile rider who was hurt in a dramatic crash at the Winter X Games in Colorado, died Thursday morning. He was 25. Moore had been staying at a hospital in Grand Junction since the crash in Aspen one week before. Family spokeswoman Chelsea Lawson confirmed his death, the first in the 18 year history of the X Games. By Pat Graham.

AP Photo NY163.

IMMIGRATION DEAL OPPONENTS

DENVER — Marty Lich is ready to bolt. It's been a couple of years since the self-described conservative considered herself a Republican, but she still often votes for GOP candidates. That's partly because of their tough stands against illegal immigration, which the retired teacher's aide blames for ruining her Southern California hometown and fears could threaten the Colorado mountain community where she now lives. By Nicholas Riccardi.

AP Photos WX103, WX102.

BLIND SKIERS

WINTER PARK — Taking a deep breath, Wally Mozdzierz points his skis down the icy slope and leans forward. He hears the snow crunch and feels the contours change beneath him as he glides swiftly down the mountain, his guide following close behind. The run is exhilarating and adrenaline pumping — common sensations for anyone on the slopes. But for Mozdzierz, it's different. He's totally blind. By Thomas Peipert.

AP Photos COTP104, COTP103, COTP101, COTP102.

COLORADO SHOOTING-REPORTER

DENVER — A Fox News Channel reporter will fight any attempt to force her to reveal her sources for a story about Colorado theater shooting suspect James Holmes, the reporter's lawyer said in a letter made public Thursday. The attorney also accused Holmes' lawyers of misleading the judge in Holmes' case about their attempts to contact Fox News. By Dan Elliott.

LEGISLATURE:

MEDICAID EXPANSION

DENVER — Colorado is preparing to expand health assistance for low-income adults, but state lawmakers want to know how much it would cost. A Senate committee is planning Thursday to examine a Republican proposal to put conditions on the looming Medicaid expansion. Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper is planning to implement the expansion as part of the federal health care overhaul. By Kristen Wyatt.

BUSINESS:

SNOW BUSINESS

DENVER — A trade group says weak snow has dampened early-season sales of some snow sports goods, but sales of gear to help skiers and snowboarders are up. Kelly Davis of SnowSports Industries America says retailers sold about 100,000 pairs of twin tip skis popular with freestylers by the end of last year. That's up 4 percent from the same period last season. Sales of specialized alpine boots and clothing that help enthusiasts trek uphill to deep powder in the backcountry, away from ski lifts, also are up. By Catherine Tsai.

AP Photos planned by Ed Andrieski.

OF COLORADO INTEREST:

SEXTORTION CHARGES

INDIANAPOLIS — An Indiana man has agreed to plead guilty to charges alleging that he tricked more than a dozen teenagers from several states into stripping or performing sexual acts for him via webcam and then used recordings of those sessions to coerce them into making even more explicit videos. Richard Finkbiner, who lives in the western Indiana community of Brazil, signed an agreement filed in federal court in Terre Haute on Wednesday in which he will plead guilty to child exploitation, extortion and possession of child pornography in exchange for a recommended sentence of 30 to 50 years in prison. By Charles Wilson.

AP Photo NY163.NA101.

POT CONSULTANT

TACOMA, Wash. — The job description requests an unlikely mix of skills: five years of regulatory experience, with a law degree preferred, and extensive knowledge of all things marijuana. But that didn't stop dozens of people from turning out Wednesday — in flannel and suits, ponytails and hemp necklaces — to find out more about becoming Washington state's official marijuana consultant. By Gene Johnson.

AP Photos WATW105, WATW106, WATW108, WATW107, WATW104.

Also:

— HOT SPRINGS FIRE — A fire has damaged part of a building at Cottonwood Hot Springs near Buena Vista.

— STATE OF UNION-MURKOWSKI — U.S. Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Mark Udall are asking their congressional colleagues to mix it up during next month's State of the Union address.

— SEXTORTION CHARGES — An Indiana man has agreed to plead guilty to charges alleging that he tricked about a dozen teenagers from several states into stripping or performing sexual acts for him via webcam and then used recordings of those sessions to coerce them into making even more explicit videos. By Charles Wilson. AP Photo NA101.

— CLUB SALE — The partnership that owns the Garden of the Gods Club is putting it on the market.

— BUCKLEY CHANGE OF COMMAND — A Buckley Air Force Base office that manages personnel issues for almost 1 million Air National Guard and reserve members and Air Force retirees has a new commander.

— SPACE CONTRACTS — Sierra Nevada Corp.'s Space Systems of Louisville is partnering with Lockheed Martin to help it build the next-generation Dream Chaser spacecraft that could soon ferry American astronauts into space.

— FAILED ROBBERIES — Colorado Springs police have arrested a man after a car thief got stuck in a field, failed to hijack a car and was sent away when he tried to rob a bank.

— SCHOOL EMBEZZLEMENT — A former financial secretary for Golden High School is accused of embezzling almost $156,000 from school funds over several years to spend on things like vacations, restaurant meals and to pay her bills.

— UNCONSCIOUS BOYS-NEGLECT — A Mesa County child care official says neighbors and friends should have reported their concerns about possible child neglect before two children died after their mother left them alone in a vehicle.

— ABORTION BAN — Colorado lawmakers are scheduled to debate whether to ban abortion with a bill that stands little chance of passing the Democratic-led Legislature.

SPORTS:

HKN--AVALANCHE-FLAMES

CALGARY — The Avalanche and Flames, the bottom two teams in the West, square off with both desperate for a victory to avoid falling too far back.

AP Photos.

___

The AP-Denver

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