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Louisville suspect convicted, sentenced to prison in murder of 77-year-old Denver man

Posted at 11:16 AM, May 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-17 13:18:27-04

DENVER — A Louisville man accused of killing a 77-year-old in Denver in November 2021 and threatening to kill police has been sentenced to prison.

Brian Murray pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced to 60 years in prison.

Murray had been arrested by Louisville police on Nov. 14, 2021 at a hotel after he threatened to commit suicide by cop, according to the Boulder District Attorney's Office and an affidavit for his arrest.

Brian Murray 1

He called 911 several times and reported to dispatchers he wanted to be shot by the police, that he was watching officers arrive and that he had a gun, according to the affidavit. He was taken into custody for a mental health hold and was taken to a hospital. But he left the hospital before a mental health evaluation could be done. The affidavit says the hospital said it did not have the staffing to physically control him because of his size.

On Nov. 16, Murray again called Louisville police and turned himself in to complete the mental health evaluation. He claimed to have thrown away a gun near a gas station but did not help officers find it. The following day, the district attorney's office recommended he be held on a $25,000 cash-only bond, but the judge granted a $7,500 personal recognizance bond with pre-trial supervision, said Shannon Carbone, a spokesperson for the Boulder District Attorney's Office.

Police found the gun Murray had thrown away on Nov. 17 and prosecutors obtained another warrant on a charge of possession of a weapon by a previous offender. But officers could not find Murray after his release on bond, the DA's office said.

A source confirmed to Denver7 that Murray was then involved in the death of 77-year-old William “Stu” Hoebel in Denver near Cheesman Park from Nov. 18. Hoebel died of asphyxia and blunt force injuries, according to the Denver Office of the Medical Examiner, and his stolen vehicle was later recovered, though the authorities did not say where.

William “Stu” Hoebel
William “Stu” Hoebel

Murray failed to show up for a Nov. 19 appearance in court.

The district attorney's office said Murray called Louisville police again on Nov. 22 and said he would "go out in a blaze of glory" and threatened to kill officers. At this point, the FBI was brought in to help locate him.

He was arrested in California on Nov. 22.