One charge filed in death case

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Maxwell
Maxwell

Despite several arrest charges, only one charge was filed against Kevin Dale Max Maxwell earlier this month in District Court relating to the August death of Jesse Hanson-Colburn — tampering with physical evidence.

Because a suppression order, also called a gag order, remains in place for the case, no additional information regarding the charge was available by press time Wednesday.

Archuleta County Sheriff’s Office personnel confirmed that Maxwell is currently out of jail on a personal recognizance bond.

Maxwell, 57, was originally arrested on charges of second-degree murder, tampering with physical evidence and obstruction of government operations.

Maxwell was arrested on Aug. 17.

Hanson-Colburn, 34, whom officials searched for over the course of several days after he went missing on Aug. 12, was found deceased the afternoon of Aug. 16.

The following information was obtained from then-undersheriff Rich Valdez and Detective Lando Garcia, both of the Archuleta County Sheriff’s Office, prior to the gag order.

Hanson-Colburn, also of Archuleta County, went missing on Aug. 12 around 7:30 p.m. after he failed to show up at his house after reportedly leaving a friend’s house on the lower Blanco River with the intention of taking his canoe down the river to his house off of Trujillo Road.

Hanson-Colburn’s mom, who shared his house, reported that he failed to show up, Valdez reported.

After a day passed, a search operation ensued, with that search including 35 to 40 individuals and a helicopter, with several other agencies notified and on call to help.

At about 3:30 p.m. on Aug. 16, an individual not associated with the search reported finding a canoe and the body of an adult male partially in and partially out of the river near mile marker 34 on Trujillo Road, Valdez said. That body was identified as belonging to Hanson-Colburn.

According to Valdez and Garcia, indicators on the body, as well as the position of the body and the location of the canoe, were inconsistent with washing down the river and led investigators to suspect foul play.

Through the subsequent investigation and interviews, ACSO personnel made contact with Maxwell — reported to be the last person with Hanson-Colburn — and Maxwell was arrested Aug. 17, Valdez explained.

An autopsy was conducted Aug. 20 to determine the cause of death, but those results were not available due to the suppression order.