Author:

Lance Benzel

Legal Affairs reporter

Lance Benzel covers legal affairs for The Gazette, with a focus on the criminal courts, and also writes a monthly mountain biking column entitled "Rider in Residence." He joined the newspaper's staff in 2008 after previous stops in Billings, Mont., central North Carolina and Chicago.

A federal lawsuit against Community Alternatives of El Paso (CAE), 2945 E. Las Vegas St. has been filed.
A federal lawsuit against Community Alternatives of El Paso (CAE), 2945 E. Las Vegas St. has been filed. (Google)
Rocky Mountain Field Institute field coordinator Holly Newell, right, and Evan Cox walk out for a lunch break Thursday, July 22, 2016, while cutting trees for the new Mount Buckhorn connector trail between Trail 667 (Upper Captain Jack's) and to the Bear Creek Trail. (The Gazette, Christian Murdock)
Former El Paso County, Colo. Sheriff Terry Maketa and his defense team including at the El Paso County courthouse Thursday, June 9, 2016. (Carol Lawrence, Gazette file)
BC-CO--Former Sheriff Indicted
Former El Paso County, Colo. Sheriff Terry Maketa and his defense team including high-powered attorney, Pamela Mackey, leave El Paso County courthouse in Colo. Springs, Colo. Thursday, June 9, 2016. It was the first court appearance for Maketa and two subordinates since being indicted on charges including extortion, false imprisonment and kidnapping. (AP Photo/The Gazette, Carol Lawrence)
The last graduation of the Mental Health Court was bittersweet for many of those attending on Tuesday, August 30, 2016. Linda Fitzwater, a mother of one of the graduates, becomes emotional while thanking those involved in the program for helping her son. After four years, the program is being shut down. The program gives people who are caught up in the judicial system and have mental health issues to be able to be successful and not return to prison. photo by Jerilee Bennett,The Gazette
Gustavo Torres-Gonzalez was arrested for the shooting death of Daryl Ritz (Photo courtesy: El Paso County Sheriff's Office)