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Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson covers politics and the West from Denver. She can be reached at [email protected].

Articles by Valerie Richardson

** FILE ** Aurora, Colo., theater shooting suspect James Holmes sits in the courtroom during his arraignment in Centennial, Colo., on Tuesday, March 12, 2013. (Associated Press/Denver Post)

Holmes can plead insanity in Colo. theater shooting

Mass shooting suspect James Eagan Holmes was allowed Tuesday to change his plea to not guilty by reason of insanity, setting the stage for an extensive mental-health evaluation that could stretch into 2014. Published June 4, 2013

Rep. Darrell E. Issa said uneven scrutiny by the IRS was "a problem that was coordinated in all likelihood right out of Washington headquarters." (Associated Press photographs)

IRS audits moderate group with GOP ties; Issa says scrutiny known in D.C.

Two weeks before news broke that the IRS had targeted conservative groups for special scrutiny of their tax-exempt applications, a moderate GOP organization received word it was being audited — a move its organizers said suggests the tax agency's scrutiny included non-tea party political groups. Published June 2, 2013

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper on May 22 granted Nathan Dunlap a "temporary reprieve," putting off indefinitely his execution on death row for the 1993 shooting deaths of four employees at an Aurora, Colo., restaurant. (Associated Press)

GOP's verdict is in on reprieve for Colo. mass killer

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper's decision to grant a reprieve last week to an infamous death row inmate means that a man's life is literally on the line in the 2014 gubernatorial race. Published May 30, 2013

Red states hold the edge in growth

The odds of finding a good job are significantly better in the nation's red states than in blue states, according to a new study of business and tax policies across the country released Thursday. Published May 23, 2013

Former Republican Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado lost his retirement nest egg "in the Madoff thing," but he's sanguine about his loss and busy with his Rocky Mountain Foundation. It focuses on conservative issues, including immigration policy. (Astrid Riecken/The Washington Times)

Tancredo enters governor's race after Colo. killer spared

Former Rep. Tom Tancredo announced Thursday he will seek the 2014 Republican nomination for Colorado governor, a day after Gov. John Hickenlooper granted a reprieve to a notorious Death Row inmate. Published May 23, 2013

Colorado's tax on pot still a worry for backers

Recreational marijuana was sold to Colorado voters as a revenue source for schools, but some lawmakers now worry that they may wind up with all of the pot and none of the money. Published May 7, 2013

Members of a crowd numbering tens of thousands smoke marijuana simultaneously at 4:20 p.m., at the Denver 420 pro-marijuana rally at Civic Center Park in Denver on April 20, 2013. Even before the passage in November 2012 of Colorado Amendment 64 promised the legalization of marijuana for recreational use, April 20 has for years been a celebration of marijuana counterculture, and the 2013 rally draw larger crowds than previous years. (Associated Press)

Colorado's marijuana legalization could be short-lived

Those who backed last year's votes to legalize marijuana in Colorado and Washington are still in high spirits, but now they're also grappling with a series of post-election potholes. Published April 26, 2013

Brandon Coats, a medical-marijuana patient, was fired from his job after failing a drug test. The Colorado Court of Appeals upheld the firing, citing federal law.

Federal law trumps Colorado's on medical marijuana

A severely disabled man fired because of his after-hours medical-marijuana use has no legal recourse because the drug remains banned under federal law, a Colorado court ruled Thursday. Published April 25, 2013