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Gazette Premium Content Courts Roundup: Woman pleads guilty to plotting stepfather's murder

By Lisa Walton Published: August 16, 2014

- A 34-year-old woman accused of plotting her stepfather's murder last year pleaded guilty to second-degree murder Friday, according to the 4th Judicial District Attorney's Office.

Dawn Richburg could face up to 45 years in prison for the murder of Miguel "Mike" Barajas, according to the District Attorney's Office. Barajas, 47, was found shot to death in his bedroom at 118 Judson St. in February 2013.

In court, investigators testified that what appeared to be a burglary gone wrong was actually part of a plot hatched by Richburg, her mother and a male acquaintance named Tommy Wright, who later admitted to pulling the trigger. According to investigators, Richburg had called to report a burglary at the home.

A sentencing hearing has been set for Oct. 20.

- A 29-year-old man accused of jumping into the back seat of a woman's car at a downtown intersection before threatening her and punching her in the face when she fled the car was sentenced to six years' probation Wednesday.

Matthew Warren pleaded guilty to third-degree assault and felony menacing in June. The assault happened in November at East Kiowa and North Tejon streets. Warren reportedly chased the woman and punched her in the face after she jumped from the car. After his arrest, Warren was identified as a staff sergeant with Fort Carson's 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

- A 21-year-old man accused of sexually assaulting a female student in a Colorado College dorm room in April pleaded not guilty to the charges Wednesday, according to court documents. Sayre Thomas was suspended and banned from coming onto the campus without a safety escort after the alleged assault. School officials reported that Thomas was an acquaintance of the alleged victim. The felony sex assault charges include assault on a helpless victim and assault on a victim who was "incapable of appraising the nature of his or conduct." Thomas is due back in court in December.

Lisa Walton, The Gazette

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