A 2012 jury’s verdict that found Michael Clark guilty of first-degree murder for the shooting of Boulder city official Marty Grisham in 1994 was upheld Thursday in Boulder District Court.
Clark, now 44, was sentenced Oct. 22, 2012 to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
On Dec. 10, 2012, Clark appealed his conviction to the Colorado Court of Appeals and on Sept. 29, 2016, his conviction was affirmed, according to a motion filed in district court. The Court of Appeals denied a request for rehearing on Nov. 3, 2016. On July 6, 2017, Clark petitioned the Colorado Supreme Court for a writ of certiorari — asking for a review of his case — but on Oct. 10, 2017, it was denied.
On Feb. 8, 2019, Clark filed a petition in district court, and the court on Jan. 22 of this year ordered prosecutors to respond to certain arguments made by Clark, including claims he made that his counsel was ineffective by failing to communicate with him and failing to investigate credibility and alternative suspects. The motion was denied Thursday.
“For the loved ones of the victim and for this community, the District Attorney’s Office is pleased that the jury’s verdict has again been upheld,” District Attorney Michael Dougherty said in a news release.
At the time of the 2012 verdict, the case was almost two decades old.
Grisham, who was 48 at the time of his death on Nov. 1, 1994, was shot four times in the head and chest in the doorway of his apartment after answering a knock at the door during dinner with his girlfriend.
Nobody saw the shooter, and police never found the murder weapon, but investigators were able to gather enough circumstantial evidence and witness testimony to get a conviction.
Boulder police said Clark — who, at the time of the shooting, was friends with Grisham’s daughter, Kristen — had forged checks he stole from Grisham’s apartment. Kristen had asked Clark to watch the apartment about a month before the shooting. Clark was a suspect from the beginning of the investigation, but was not charged until 2012 after prosecutors found evidence they say linked Clark to the sale of a 9mm gun similar to the one used to shoot Grisham.
While Clark’s attorneys tried to convince the jury there was no hard evidence to prove Clark was the shooter, prosecutors argued the evidence showed Clark was the one person with the means and the motive to kill Grisham.
“The District Attorney’s Office remains committed to ensuring this defendant is held fully responsible for this murder,” Dougherty said. “Our team poured their energy into this postconviction motion. Because of their tireless efforts, and with today’s court decision, the defendant will continue to be held accountable for his actions.”
Clark is housed at the Fremont Correctional Facility in Cañon City.