On March 21, 2019, The Honorable Keri A. Yoder received three verdicts of guilty from a jury of 12 citizens selected from Montrose County. Ashford Nathaniel Archer was charged and found guilty of 2 counts of Child Abuse, Knowingly/Recklessly Causing Death, which are class 2 felonies, and 1 count of Accessory to Crime, a class 4 felony, relating to the death of two young girls in the area of Norwood, Colorado in the summer of 2017. The DA’s Offices wishes to extend their gratitude to the citizens who served on the jury and to highlight their willingness to perform their civic duty even when it required their participating over a three-week period of time.
This trial began March 4, 2019, and lasted through March 21, 2019, when the verdicts of guilty were returned in open court. The evidence was presented through testimony presented by lay witnesses, expert witnesses, and law enforcement personnel from several agencies.
We recognize the expenditure of not only time, but energy, investigation, and resources by our partners in law enforcement including the entire San Miguel Sheriff’s Department and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. We appreciate the tireless efforts they expended, and continue to expend, during the investigation of these criminal acts. The work accomplished by Sheriff Bill Masters and all of the members of his Department, including Investigator Dan Covault has been extraordinary. We also acknowledge the support provided by the County of San Miguel to the investigation and these cases.
These verdicts are also the result of the hard work from the entire Prosecution Team. This Team includes Chief Deputy DA Seth Ryan, Special Deputy DA Daniel Seidel from the Office of the Colorado Attorney General, Deputy DA Robert Whiting, DA Chief Investigator Duane Morton, San Miguel Sheriff’s Investigator Dan Covault, AG Investigator Paul Goodman, Victim/Witness Coordinator Aimee English, Victims Services Assistants Eleasha Cervantes and Denetta Dunlap, and Legal Services Supervisor Sherry McKenzie. We also wish to acknowledge the efforts of the entire staff of the Office of the District Attorney who supported the Prosecution Team during the trial.
The sentencing of Ashford Nathaniel Archer is scheduled for June 4, 2019, at 1:30 p.m. in the San Miguel District Court. The sentencing range is 16-48 years on each of Counts 1 and 2 and from 2-6 years on Count 3.
Any criminal charge against a defendant is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until or unless proven guilty.