The DA Dispatch
Office Updates from Your Denver DA
Affirming Our Commitment to Justice

If the wrong person is convicted, the only person who benefits is the real offender. Ensuring that the correct person is convicted is an essential part of a modern prosecutor’s office. I am pleased to share that the Denver DA’s Office now has a Conviction Review Unit. This is something that I have wanted to establish since I first took office and this year, my budget request was funded. 
 Denver DA Beth McCann
Our prosecutorial teams spend every day ensuring that those who inflict harm are rightfully held accountable for their actions. Nevertheless, it is critically important that justice be done when, in those rare instances, the wrong person is convicted. I believe it is critically important to examine our work, learn lessons, and improve. 
The unit itself is comprised of a Deputy DA, who was in our Appellate Division, an investigator and interns. When a claim of innocence is made, they investigate whether there is any merit to the claim and whether there is any new evidence or evidence still available to examine. They work with an applicant’s defense counsel to investigate the applicant’s claims. If appropriate, our unit will support the request for relief. The unit is also responsible for reviewing the applications for clemency we receive from the governor’s office.
With the launch of the Conviction Review Unit, we are furthering our commitment to accuracy and our dedication to justice. 
Got an Open Misdemeanor Warrant? Get a Fresh Start
Currently, 10,000 cases are in limbo in Denver County Court because the defendant has an outstanding warrant. Many of those people live in fear that at any moment, they may be arrested. In response to this issue, Deputy District Attorneys I.L. Shamsid-Deen and Chris Brown-Haugen are taking the lead to organize a one-day warrant forgiveness event this fall.
Fresh Start Ahead
The Arapahoe County, Boulder County, Douglas County and Jefferson County DA’s offices have all held warrant forgiveness events and likewise the City of Denver holds bi-monthly events to forgive municipal ordinance violations. We are grateful to our partners in the county court criminal justice system for working to make this a reality. Giving people a chance to do the right thing is in the interest of justice
Justice Delayed But Not Denied
On June 30, 1998, waitress Bonny Baker did not show up for work and was presumed missing. Nearly 24 years after her disappearance, Crespin Nene-Perez, who was Ms. Baker’s boyfriend at the time, pled guilty to her murder and was sentenced to 20 years in prison this June. 
Violent crime cold cases are among the most challenging of all cases we handle. At sentencing, Ms. Baker’s son wore a button with his mother’s high-school photo and told the judge; “She wasn’t just a mother to her own children; she was a mother to other peoples’ children in the neighborhood.”
Watch this Fox31 story to learn moreKiller sentenced in a 24-year-old Denver cold case
"Thanks to the meticulous and detailed work of Senior Chief Deputy DA Dawn Weber who leads our Cold Case Unit, follow up by our investigators, as well as persistent work by the Denver Police Department, justice may be delayed, but it is rarely denied."
-DA Beth McCann
The Nation's Prosecutors Come To Denver

DA Beth McCann opened the official proceedings of the July 2022 National District Attorneys Association (NDAA) annual conference.
In her remarks, DA McCann said, “The people of our country have entrusted all of us with the duty of advancing a society that holds people accountable for criminal actions and that strives for justice and equity for victims and defendants of all races and ethnic backgrounds. Public safety is one of the most important, if not the most important function of government. It is an awesome responsibility and one that we all take very seriously."  
 DA McCann addresses the National District Attorney’s Association
Among many the many presentations at the conference, Deputy District Attorney Katherine Hansen, Director of our ground-breaking Digital Evidence Unit, made us proud by leading a training that was highly regarded by conference attendees.
We Walked Like MADD, and with Style

Every year, we support the MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) signature fundraising event, Walk Like MADD, to help create a future of no more victims.    
 Group photo of Team Denver DA 
This year the DA Office team raised more than $12,000 and won the “Top Law Enforcement Team” award. We had fun helping MADD get one step closer to reaching its goal.
Public Servant; Ferret Whisperer
A new employee whom we are calling “PD” joined our office in March and grounds herself in rescuing ferrets.
Six years ago, PD fell in love with her first pet ferret, Amaryn, and subsequently became an active participant in an online community of ferret owners. After adopting multiple ferrets needing rehabilitation, she began a ferret sanctuary because, as she says, “when I see a need, I step in.” 
Learn more about FerretFace Sanctuary
 Amaryn, the ferret that started it all