‘Boulder police: homeless man stabbed, beaten with stick’

See the full story in the Daily Camera here. Copied below in its entirety, including photos of the suspect and two victims:

James Craig Dobson appears in court at the Boulder County Jail on Wednesday.

James Craig Dobson appears in court at the Boulder County Jail on Wednesday. (Paul Aiken / Staff Photographer)

Boulder police believe that the homeless man assaulted on the corner of 27th Way and Baseline Road early Tuesday morning was stabbed and beaten with a stick, and doctors do not expect him to survive his injuries.

James Craig Dobson, 56, has been arrested in the assault of Roland Dequina, 43, and Jeffrey Cross, 50. Dobson faces charges of attempted murder and assault, but an arrest affidavit released Wednesday indicates the case “may turn into a homicide,” as doctors said Dequina is not expected to survive.

Dequina remained in critical condition Wednesday, while Cross was listed in good condition.

Roland Dequina

Roland Dequina (Boulder County Sheriff’s Office / Courtesy photo)

Jeffrey Cross

Jeffrey Cross (Boulder County Sheriff’s Office / Courtesy photo)

Dobson made his first appearance in court on Wednesday, and was given a $100,000 bond by Boulder County Judge Karolyn Moore. Boulder Deputy District Attorney Tim Johnson said the seriousness of the assault and the fact that he was homeless warranted the high bond.

“We believe he is not only a risk to the community but is a high risk to fail to appear in court,” Johnson said.

Moore then initially scheduled Dobson for a filing of charges on Friday, but at the request of Johnson and Dobson’s attorney, Amanda Bailhache, set him for a filing of charges on Aug. 2.

According to the arrest affidavit, Dobson, Cross and Dequina — all three of whom are homeless — had been hanging out and drinking overnight Monday and had been arguing throughout the night.

At 10 p.m. Monday, an officer responded to the area and found Dobson sitting near an intoxicated Cross, who was lying on the ground in the fetal position and bleeding. When taken to the hospital, Cross said he got the injuries when he “took a digger,” and Dobson also denied that anything happened.

Later in the night, three people bicycling through the same area at about 2:30 a.m. found Dequina lying in a pool of blood and called 911.

First responders were unable to find a pulse and began performing CPR. Doctors later said Dequina had a skull fracture, brain bleed, lacerations on his face and bruising and abrasions on his chest and arms. Medical staff told police at the time they did not expect Dequina to survive. (Emphasis is mine — MRW.)

According to the affidavit, police found Dobson at 9:20 a.m. Tuesday and took him in for questioning after hearing he, Dequina and Cross had been together overnight and arguing.

Police said Dobson was “difficult to follow” and “disjointed,” but said he admitted he was with Dequina. Dobson told police that Dequina threatened him with a stick, so he punched him in the face and then picked up his own stick to defend himself.

Investigators said Dobson’s clothes had blood stains on them and also had what appeared to be a splinter on his left hand.

Police at the scene recovered a branch that was 12 to 18 inches long and appeared to have been broken off a tree. Investigators said that the sharp end of the branch had blood on it and was consistent with Dequina’s injuries.

A vodka bottle covered in blood was also found at the scene. (Emphasis is mine — MRW.)

Dobson’s criminal history includes arrests for obstructing a police officer, criminal mischief, trespassing, theft and burglary.

Dequina also has a criminal history in Boulder County that includes arrests for aggravated robbery, menacing, assault and theft, while Cross is a registered sex offender.

—————————————————————————————- 

A rumor going around in Boulder Shelter for the Homeless this morning is that one or more of these homeless men had been smoking methamphetamine on the night in question, and that’s certainly believable for Mr. Dobson given the extreme violence he displayed.

I understand that Mr. Dequina was formerly a resident of Housing First at 1175 Lee Hill. I’ll refrain from speculating on what might have led him to leave that highly-touted and very expensive program; however, as things turn out it was obviously of no benefit to him whatsoever.

Although I don’t know any of the three personally, I’ve seen all of them many times during my years here in Boulder.

What is Boulder City Council going to do about the increasingly dangerous climate that hundreds of homeless people are living in every day and every night? None of these three were angels, but you must remember two things:

1) Most of us are peaceful and law-abiding and trying to survive by our wits; and

2) Very few incidents of homeless-on-homeless crime are reported to police, so things are actually FAR WORSE than you might think, based only on the high-profile crimes we read about.

A prediction: The self-styled homeless advocates will either be MIA as far as speaking out on this case or they will try to exploit it in a renewed call for still more homeless shelter / services. BUT, the facts are that none of these three homeless men would have been accepted into any shelter with reasonable standards for behavior, and the ongoing Transient Migration to our city will continue to overwhelm available services no matter how much money is spent.

— MRW 

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