Top state prison official murdered in Colorado

Tom Clements (Photo: Colorado Department of Corrections)

The Associated Press is reporting that the head of Colorado’s state Department of Corrections, Tom Clements, was murdered last night in the town of Monument, when a gunman came to his front door.

Investigators haven’t found the shooter and it’s still unclear whether the attack was related to his position.

“As the director of the Department of Corrections or any similar type position, it could in fact open someone up to be a target of a crime such as this,” Lt. Jeff Kramer, of the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office, told the AP.

“Although we remain sensitive to that, we also want to make sure that we remain open-minded to other possibilities as well.”

Clements was the long-time head of Missouri’s corrections system before being named to head Colorado’s prison system in 2011.

The AP noted that the killing follows on the heels of a decision by Colorado officials to deny the request of a Saudi national to serve part of his prison sentence in Saudi Arabia.

Homaidan al-Turki was convicted of sexually assaulting a housekeeper and keeping her as a virtual slave. Clements said state law requires sex offenders to undergo treatment while in prison and that al-Turki had declined to participate.

It’s unclear whether that case had any connection to the attack on Clements.  We’ll update as more information becomes available.


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