John Jacoby, a 48-year-old man who was a part-time park caretaker for the town of Windsor, Colorado was shot twice and killed Monday morning while riding his bike a mile from his apartment. Jacoby was well-known in this small Colorado town about 30 miles north of Denver as a helpful person who did not own a car and rode his bike everywhere.
Windsor Police Lt. Rich Higuera told The Coloradan that there were no suspects and no leads in the shooting that occurred before 10 am Monday at the intersection of Weld County Road 15, near County Road 72. Higuera said that first responders initially thought that Jacoby was a victim of a hit-and-run crash, but after inspecting the body they discovered he had sustained two gunshot wounds. Lt. Higuera added that police were not releasing evidence and would not disclose where in the body Jacoby was shot.
Citizens were shocked as Windsor was ranked the third-safest town in Colorado by a 2014 Movolo report and the safest big city (20,000-plus population) in the state. Police said that the last homicide in Windsor was eight years ago.
Windsor resident Tony Bates, who said he knew Jacoby for 40 years, told The Coloradan that the he received a message from Jacoby saying he would be at Saturday’s Pelican Fest Triathlon in Windsor rooting for him.
“He texted me that he would be rooting for me 100 percent and that he'd see me Saturday,” Bates told The Coloradan. “I decided that at that race, I’m dedicating 100 percent to Johnny.”
That dedication will have to wait, as a Pelican Fest Triathlon official announced Tuesday that the 2015 event would be canceled.
A notice on the event’s website explained the cancellation was based on safety concerns that the shooter is still at large and speculation that this murder may have been related to a recent series of shootings on the nearby I-25 corridor.
In the past month, several incidents were reported of bullets shattering glass of automobile windshields while traveling on nearby roads. In addition, last month Cori Romero, a 20-year-old Milliken woman, was shot in the neck from a car which pulled up beside her while she was driving home from work on I-25 in Larimer County.
Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith told The Coloradan: “At this point we do not know if there is any tie between the traffic murder being investigated by the Windsor Police Department and the shooting of a motorist in Larimer County last month.”
A notice to race participants posted on the Pelican Fest Triathlon website stated:
“My decision was based on the overall safety of all the athletes, volunteers, traffic control personnel, spectators and vendors. The proximity of the shooting death and the bike course gave me real concerns. I am comfortable with the risk associated with the athletic side of the event but I am not comfortable with the risk on the security side in this situation. After talking with the Windsor Police Department and Weld County Sheriffs this morning they are dealing with an unknown at this point and you may have read they have called in the FBI for assistance. Neither Windsor nor Weld County Sheriffs had extra staff available to assist with security at our event. I would much rather they use the resources available to them to resolve this terrible situation than to manage security at our event.”