Last Thursday, 38-year-old Michael Close, of Colorado, was convicted of first-degree murder and attempted murder. This comes after he was accused of killing a woman with an AK-47 and injuring her boyfriend. The two had been walking their dog.
On June 10, 2020, Close had gotten into a verbal dispute with Isabella Thallas, 21, and Darian Simon. This was because the couple had told their dog to relieve itself outside of Close’s apartment, authorities say.
Reports indicate that the jurors determined that Close was aware of what he was doing although he had pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.
Prior to retrieving his AK-47, Close had screamed out the window at the pair as they encouraged their dog to “go potty”. He is said to have taken the weapon from a friend who was a Denver police sergeant. Prosecutors said that he shot the firearm 24 times.
Close’s attorney stated that he had experienced a mental break. She claimed that he had an abusive childhood, had lost many jobs, gone through a breakup, and the COVID-19 pandemic was affecting him at that time.
Close wept as the verdict was being read.
Members of Thallas’ family cried, as well.
“We’ve been waiting 2 1/2 years for this day. What happened in there just went by…almost as fast as my daughter was slaughtered. And our lives were changed forever,” said Anna Thallas, Isabella’s mother.
A sentencing hearing is set for Nov. 4.