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Man wanted by Louisville police arrested in California, linked to murder of Denver man

Brian Murray 1
Posted at 2:27 PM, Nov 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-23 21:25:01-05

DENVER – An “armed and dangerous” man Louisville police issued a wanted bulletin for on Monday has been arrested in California and is also wanted in connection to the murder of a 77-year-old man in Denver last week, according to a high-ranking law enforcement source and the Boulder County District Attorney's Office.

Louisville police said in a news release Tuesday afternoon that Brian Murray was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. A source confirmed to Denver7 Investigates he was arrested in California, and that information was confirmed by the Boulder District Attorney's Office and Denver police, who said he would face investigation on a first-degree murder charge.

A DPD detective went to interview Murray in Los Angeles Tuesday and police and the Denver district attorney's office are working on extraditing him back to Colorado.

Louisville police said Monday he was wanted on two outstanding warrants of failure to appear and possession of a weapon by a previous offender. The department said it was working with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies to find him, and called him armed and dangerous.

But a source confirmed to Denver7 Tuesday afternoon he is also expected to face charges in connection with the Nov. 18 murder of 77-year-old William “Stu” Hoebel in Denver near Cheesman Park.

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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.

Murray had been arrested by Louisville police on Nov. 14 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.

He called 911 several times and reported to distpatchers 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 also told police he had gotten ahold of a gun that he later threw away near a gas station, though the affidavit says he was uncooperative in helping officers find it. He was arrested on charges of obstruction of government operations and attempt to influence a public servant.

In court on Nov. 17, 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.

That same day, police found the gun in question and prosecutors obtained another warrant on the possession of a weapon by a previous offender charge. But officers were unable to find him after his release on bond, the DA's office said.

When Murray failed to appear at his Nov. 19 court appearance, the judge set a $25,000 cash or surety bond. The district attorney's office said Murray then called Louisville police again on Nov. 22 and said he would "go out in a blaze of glory" and threatened to kill officers.

Based on that conversation, Carbone said, the police department and DA's Office worked with the FBI to find him.

"Because of that teamwork, earlier today, the defendant was taken into custody in California in conection to his threats to the Louisville Police Deparmtent and to other individuals, as well as a homicide in Denver," Carbone said.

Murray will be extradited back to Boulder County on the outstanding warrants.

“Brian Murray is an absolute danger to our community and a serious flight risk," Boulder District Attorney Michael Dougherty said in a statement. "Over the past week, the Louisville Police Department has been working incredibly hard to deal with the risks to public safety presented by this man – with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the District Attorney’s Office. As we have argued from the start, this defendant should not be released into the community.”

This is a developing news story and will be updated.