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The Denver Post
September 29, 1995
Author: The Denver Post
A Denver District Court judge has ordered Joe Barrientes to stand trial Nov. 6 in the shooting death of a neighbor last summer. Barrientes, 47, is charged with first-degree murder in connection with the shooting death of 38-year-old Dennis Croker.
During a preliminary hearing yesterday, Barrientes’ attorneys hinted at a defense of mental instability – which may stem from his Vietnam experience. Several witnesses told police there was no animosity between the two men. In fact, they were friends.
Denver Police Detective Calvin Hemphill was the only witness to testify at yesterday’s hearing. During questioning, Hemphill said he talked to a neighbor who said Barrientes often would scream, laugh out loud and talk to himself in his basement apartment. “Did she not refer to him as the “shell-shocked Vietnam vet?”‘ Handley asked. Hemphill agreed that was the witness’ comment. Hemphill also said he was aware that Barrientes was under medication for depression.
Record Number: DNVR617855