Denver news in 5 minutes: What you need to know today, Sept. 27

(Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

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Hi there. Today’s news roundup includes the new interaction of politics and football, Colorado’s dreams of Hyperloop and more.

A funeral procession through Central City, likely during the 1890 and possibly for Sheriff R.B. Williams, who was shot by a quartz hauler. (Donald Campbell Kemp/Western History & Genealogy Dept./Denver Public Library/K-283)

A funeral procession through Central City, likely during the 1890 and possibly for Sheriff R.B. Williams, who was shot by a quartz hauler. (Donald Campbell Kemp/Western History & Genealogy Dept./Denver Public Library/K-283)

Sports:

The Rockies got an important win that could keep their playoff hopes alive. (AP)

John Elway, general manager of the Broncos, wants to “take the politics out of football.” He has not been great at doing that himself. (Denverite)

Schools:

Aurora Public Schools’ improving performance has lifted the district off of the state’s list of consistently troubled districts. Monte Whaley takes a look at William Smith High, the small “test bed” where APS is trying out new strategies. (DP)

Officials from Weld County and Denver schools are trying to smooth things over. They issued a joint letter that said that Weld Central’s football team did not display a Confederate flag at a game against Manual High School, but they acknowledged eyewitness accounts that said spectators tried to bring the flag into the game, as Blair Miller reports. (ABC7)

Health:

Smoking marijuana extract with a blowtorch may not be great for you. It could release carcinogens, researchers found. (Denverite)

Transportation:

Downtown Denver Partnership wants to know how you get around downtown. (Streetsblog)

We’ve got some more early details on Colorado’s Hyperloop plans. A proposal estimates the first phase could happen for $3 billion. (Denverite)

Longmont and Boulder would still very much like for RTD to run the promised Northwest rail service to them. “It’s not getting a lot of traction from taxpayers, who are reluctant to throw more money toward a project that has been cast to the side,” said Karen Stuart of the State Transportation Commission, as Ana Lewett reports. (Times-Call)

RTD is telling the feds that it may never get its new rail crossings completely up to standard. The Federal Railroad Administration wants the arms to be down precisely 20 seconds before and after the train passes. RTD wants the requirement to be “at least” 20 seconds before and after, as Cathy Proctor explains in a helpful report. (DBJ)

The business park around the Lincoln rail station is getting its own independent bike-share program, as Megan reports. (Denverite)

Business & development:

Lakewood activists want to limit housing growth in Denver’s suburban neighbor — except along West Colfax Avenue. Mayor Adam Paul described this approach as “classist and in some ways racist.” Allison Sherry reports. (CPR)

Cold Crush is leaving River North. Its owner, Brian Mathenge, wants to take it to 3014 East Colfax Avenue, a property he owns, as Jon Solomon reports. The property is currently home to Southside Bar and Kitchen, which Mathenge is trying to evict, according to Solomon. It seems to be turning into a pretty nasty fight. (Westword)

Broadway businesses are planning a big Halloween parade, as Adrian reports. (Denverite)

Criminal justice:

The Colorado Independent’s reporting on the death-sentence trial of Sir Mario Owens was featured prominently in the Washington Post, where columnist Radley Balko said that it’s “one of the worst examples of prosecutorial misconduct,” he’s seen in a death-penalty case.

“There is no definitive physical evidence, no confession, and no eyewitnesses who identified Owens in a case prosecutors built almost entirely on the testimony of informant witnesses to whom the DA’s office gave plea bargains, funds, or both in return for their cooperation against Owens,” Susan Greene wrote for the Independent.

Former 18th District Attorney Carol Chambers led the case for six years. DA George Brauchler, a candidate for governor, has fought to uphold the conviction.

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Denverite members have made the decision to financially support local journalism that matters to you. Ready to tell your networks why? Sharing our “About” page with your own personal comments could really help us out.