Colorado teen suspected in murder of grandparents

By Keith Coffman

DENVER (Reuters) – A 16-year-old boy is under investigation for the murder of his great-grandparents, police said on Thursday, the second time in a month that a young male is suspected in a family killing in rural eastern Colorado.

Lance Clem, spokesman for the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, said that detectives have no other suspects in the slayings of Charles Clagget, 80, and his wife Laura, 82, in their Hugo, Colorado home, about 105 miles southeast of Denver.

“He (the 16-year-old) is the focus of the homicide investigation,” Clem told Reuters.

The boy, who has not been arrested, lived in the home and there were no signs of a break-in, or any other evidence that would lead investigators to believe an intruder committed the crimes, Clem said.

Authorities have not disclosed how the elderly couple died.

The murders come less than a month after a 12-year-old boy was charged with murdering his parents and wounding two of his siblings in Burlington, Colorado, about 75 miles northeast of Hugo.

The chain of events in the latest killings began Wednesday when the Colorado State Patrol responded to reports of a one-vehicle rollover accident on a rural road outside Hugo, a ranching and farming town of 770 residents on the high plains of Colorado.

When officers arrived at the scene, they discovered the boy pinned under an overturned pickup truck. He was transported to a Denver hospital with serious, but not life-threatening injuries.

When police went to the home of the truck’s owners to notify them of the accident, deputies with the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office found the couple murdered in their beds.

Clem said investigators found a large amount of cash in the truck, but declined to say how much.

“It was certainly more than the typical a person would have on them,” Clem said, adding that detectives have talked to the suspect in the hospital.

Lincoln County Sheriff Tom Nestor told reporters Wednesday that the spate of violence on the Colorado prairie is unlike anything he has seen in his 20 years as sheriff.

In addition to the Clagget killings and the Burlington murders in neighboring Kit Carson County, a police officer in another Lincoln County city was recently shot dead by a fugitive sex offender whom he was trying to arrest.

“This is absolutely the worst month of my career in Lincoln County,” Nestor said.

(Editing by Dan Whitcomb and Greg McCune)

Colorado teen suspected in murder of grandparents