Suspect in shooting of Glenwood Springs police officer on probation in harassment case
RIFLE, Colorado – A man who was investigated in last year’s police officer shooting was sentenced to a year’s probation Monday for a June 25 harassment and domestic violence case.The harassment case originated almost a year after the nonfatal July 29, 2007, shooting of a Glenwood Springs police officer. That was contrary to Sergio Esteban Ramirez’s statement in an August interview with the Post Independent that he had not gotten in trouble with the police since the time he was arrested in connection with the officer shooting. The charges that he shot the police officer were later dropped.A resulting Aug. 31 story incorrectly reported that Ramirez hadn’t gotten in trouble with the police since around the time of the shooting. The Post Independent double-checked Ramirez’s statement, but an inquiry with court officials at the time didn’t turn up the harassment case from June.Ramirez also has been involved in four other cases since 2006 including two felony theft cases, a misdemeanor theft case and a felony criminal impersonation case.The story also included statements of support from Ramirez’s girlfriend, Berenice Sostenes Delacruz. Delacruz is the alleged victim in the harassment case.Ramirez didn’t return a cell phone message Monday. He was arrested June 25 after allegedly pushing Delacruz to the ground outside a residence in Parachute, according to an arrest affidavit.Ramirez told Parachute police they had been fighting because she called him another guy’s name, police said. He said he had his arm around her when she “started resisting” and then “fell to the ground,” police said, but Delacruz told police Ramirez pushed her down.Ramirez was charged with harassment with a domestic violence sentencing enhancement, but he was allowed to plead guilty to a lesser petty offense of disorderly conduct. He received a deferred judgment and sentence and a year of probation.Ramirez must pay $235 in fines and court costs. He also has to obtain a domestic violence evaluation and comply with its recommendations.He and another suspect were released from jail weeks after their August 2007 arrests in connection with the police officer shooting. Authorities said the charges were dropped due to a lack of evidence, but they won’t rule out either man as a possible suspect, and they recently said the investigation is still ongoing. The Garfield County Sheriff’s Office and the 9th Judicial District Attorney have remained tight-lipped about the reasons behind the arrests and search warrant, and arrest warrant affidavits remain under seal.Ramirez, his attorney and others have said law enforcement obviously had the wrong men. But authorities said no mistake was made, and they met the legal burden of probable cause for the arrests.The police officer was shot in the chest in a bulletproof vest at night near an impound lot by the Glenwood Springs Airport. He survived after getting treated for minor injuries and now works for the Rifle Police Department for reasons unrelated to the shooting.Contact Pete Fowler: firstname.lastname@example.orgPost Independent, Glenwood Springs Colorado CO
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