Dog Walker’s Killer Sentenced To Life In Prison, No Parole

A man was sentenced to life in prison for using an Ak-47 to kill a woman and injure her boyfriend while they were walking their dog.

On Friday, a judge sentenced Michael Close to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the death of Isabella Thallas, 21, and added a 48-year sentence for the attempted murder of Darian Simon.

Prosecutors claim Close had a “verbal exchange” with the couple on June 10, 2020, over a command they used to get their dog to relieve itself outside Close’s apartment near Coors Field.

Close yelled out the window at the couple as they urged the dog to “go potty” before grabbing the Ak-47 from a friend who was a Denver police sergeant, according to the Denver Post. Prosecutors claimed he fired 24 shots.

Close pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, but jurors found him guilty of first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, and two counts of first-degree assault in September.

Sonja Prins, Close’s public defender at the time, said that Close had a mental breakdown. She said that Close’s bad mental health at the time of the shooting was caused by an abusive childhood, a string of job losses, a breakup, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

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