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Thursday, January 5,2012

Boulder police: Cold case murder solved

By Boulder Weekly Staff
Marty Grisham

Boulder police have arrested a suspect investigators believe is responsible for the 1994 death of 48-year-old Marty Grisham.

According to police, Grisham was gunned down around 9:30 p.m. on Nov. 1, 1994, as he answered a knock at his apartment door. When Grisham opened the door, an assailant shot him four times before fleeing the scene. He had been having dinner with his girlfriend at the time. Grisham lived in the 5600 block of Arapahoe.

Grisham was rushed to the hospital, where he died of his injuries. Grisham was the city of Boulder’s data processing director at the time of his death.

Today, police arrested Michael Martin Clark, 36, in unincorporated Summit County, on suspicion of first-degree murder.

Police say Clark was an acquaintance of Grisham’s daughter at the time of the homicide. Initially, he was a person of interest/suspect in the crime because he had admitted to stealing a book of checks from Grisham, which he used to forge nearly $4,500 from Grisham’s account. Grisham reported the theft and identified Clark as a suspect when he discovered the theft on Nov. 1, 1994. Grisham was killed later that night.

Clark was arrested on a forgery charge on Nov. 3, 1994, and later pled guilty to that charge. He said he was able to access Grisham’s home because he’d been given a key by Grisham’s daughter so he could take care of Grisham’s cat. Police say he denied any knowledge of or involvement in Grisham’s murder.

“Cold cases like this one are often solved through good, old-fashioned detective work. Diligence, attention to detail and perserverence — that’s how detectives solved this crime,” said Boulder Police Chief Mark Beckner.

The FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (BATF), the DEA and the Northern Colorado Drug Task Force provided technical and investigative assistance during the investigation, police said.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to contact Det. Chuck Heidel at 303-441-3339. Those who have information but wish to remain anonymous may contact the Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 1-800-444-3776. Tips can also be submitted through the Crime Stoppers website at www.crimeshurt.com. Those submitting tips through Crime Stoppers that lead to the arrest and filing of charges on a suspect may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000 from Crime Stoppers.

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On Jan. 5th you splattered bold headlines that "Boulder Police: Cold Case Murder Solved" and then went on to report that a suspect in this case had just been arrested.  How irresponsible is that?  Arresting a person who has not even had charges pressed yet is a long way from a Cold Case Solved.  Let's clean it up and report the facts.  Nothing has been "solved".  There has not even been a trial yet!  I think this man is owed an apology.