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Crime News Breaking News

Denver Man Allegedly Shot Woman To Death With AR-15 Over Dog Poop Dispute

Michael Close allegedly opened fire on Isabella Thallas and her boyfriend, who survived the attack, from his first-floor apartment.

By Daniel Egitto
Michael Close Pd

A Denver man has been charged with murdering a woman over a dispute about her dog pooping, the Denver District Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday.

Isabella Thallas, 21, was out for a walk on June 10 with her dog and boyfriend Darian Simon when a local man began yelling at them over their attempts to get their dog to defecate, the DA’s Office said in a news release Tuesday.

Michael Close, 36, allegedly shouted at the couple from his ground floor apartment's window, “asking if the victim was going to train the dog or just yell at it,” according to an affidavit filed by the Denver Police Department.

When the couple tried to ignore him, Close allegedly pointed an AR-15 rifle out of his window and opened fire.

Thallas fell to the ground after being shot and was later pronounced dead at the scene. Simon ran away until he could go no further — having suffered gunshot wounds to his leg and buttocks, according to the affidavit. 

Michael Close Pd

Simon has since undergone surgery for a shattered femur. However, AR-15 bullets are so big doctors aren’t sure whether they will be able remove them from Simon’s body, KMGH-TV, a local news outlet, reported last Friday.

The dog was not hurt by the gunfire, according to Denverite.

Close allegedly fled the scene and was arrested during a traffic stop later that afternoon. Officers found an assault rifle and a handgun on the floor in front of the passenger seat, along with a gun belt and ammunition magazines, according to the affidavit.

Close was booked without bail and faces charges on 20 counts: two counts of first degree murder, two counts of criminal attempt to commit murder, two counts of first-degree assault, three counts of possessing a prohibited large-capacity magazine, six counts of using a prohibited large-capacity magazine while committing a crime, and one count of disorderly conduct, according to the district attorney's press release. He also faces four counts of crime of violence  — which is a sentence-enhancing charge.

Thallas’ family has created a GoFundMe to help with her funeral expenses. As of Thursday, it has raised more than $70,000.

She was killed just two days after her birthday, KMGH-TV reported.

Her family is also fundraising to create a dog park at the scene of the shooting. That GoFundMe has so far raised over $20,000.

It wasn't immediately clear if Close had an attorney available for comment.

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