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Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson covers politics and the West from Denver. She can be reached at

Articles by Valerie Richardson

Tarantulas are the heaviest, hairiest, scariest spiders on the planet. U.S. breeders of these spiders are fretting over a petition to list five species as endangered under the Endangered Species Act, fearing that the move would actually hurt the population. (Associated Press)

Tarantula fans fret over proposed endangered listing

Tarantula collectors have no fear when it comes to their favorite large, hairy pets, but U.S. breeders are scared to death of a Fish and Wildlife Service proposal that would list the species as endangered. Published December 18, 2016

A law enforcement officer speaks to a protester against the Dakota Access Pipeline through a wall of razor wire on the Backwater Bridge over Cantapeta Creek on Thursday afternoon, Dec. 8, 2016. Protesters have been trespassing at the site and cutting wire in attempts to gain access to the pipeline work area in southern Morton County. (Tom Stromme/The Bismarck Tribune via AP)

Sheriffs: Obama should be 'ashamed' for abandoning N.D. as protests rage

In a blistering letter to Mr. Obama released Monday, a dozen law-enforcement officials accused the administration of fanning the flames of the Dakota Access pipeline protest and then refusing to help local law enforcement stuck with trying to maintain order. Published December 12, 2016

Military veterans huddle together to hold an American flag against strong winds during a march to a closed bridge outside the Oceti Sakowin camp where people have gathered to protest the Dakota Access oil pipeline in Cannon Ball, N.D., Monday, Dec. 5, 2016. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Veterans dump on Dakota Access protest

For veterans prepared to put their lives on the line to help the Standing Rock Sioux stop the Dakota Access pipeline, this week's protest didn't quite live up to the hype. Published December 8, 2016