Local furrier, rancher charged with murder of ex-boyfriend
Kathleen Ann Denson, 44, was charged Monday, July 1, with second-degree murder in the June 27 shooting death of her ex-boyfriend, Gerald “Cody” Boyd, 45, of Vail.Denson is the owner of the Draggin’ A Ranch in Eagle and Hillis of Snowmass, Inc., a company that owns several fur stores in Colorado, including Hillis Furs on Gore Creek Drive in Vail.Circumstances surrounding the shooting remain unclear. Police say they responded to Denson’s ranch house at 1:15 p.m., Thursday, June 27, after receiving a 911 call from Denson reporting she had shot her ex-boyfriend.Eagle County Judge Terri S. Diem has issued a gag order in the case and has ordered all court documents to be sealed. But other court documents obtained by The Vail Trail paint a picture of a troubled couple.Denson and Boyd had an “on-and-off relationship for the last 34 years,” according to Eagle County Sheriff’s Detective Doug Winters, during which time they lived together sporadically. Boyd was born in Austin, Texas, and had lived in Eagle County the last five years, doing odd jobs and light construction work, Winters says.In the summer of 2000 Boyd and Denson issued restraining orders against each other. On June 26 of that year, Denson filed one against Boyd, claiming he threatened to kill her horses and “hurt things or people I care about.” Denson has a son and a daughter from a previous marriage.She also outlined past incidents leading up to the threats, including the theft of a Russian SKS semi-automatic assault rifle that Boyd later returned to Denson, who in turn handed it over to police because she said Boyd had “modified” it. Three months later the weapon was returned to Denson. It was not the weapon used in the alleged shooting of Boyd, according to Eagle County evidence custodians.Another concern Denson listed in her application for a restraining order was that Boyd had written her a check for $4,000 that did not clear. She said she would drop the restraining order if he sent her a good check, and on Aug. 10, 2000, she did remove the order, stating, “Boyd and I have to be adult enough to work this out on our own.”Previously, on July 13, 2000, Boyd had filed his own restraining order against Denson, claiming she had been slandering him to suppliers and general contractors in the area. He also claimed she had assaulted him several times under the influence of alcohol. That restraining order was violated by Denson on July 21, and she was hit with a $250 fine. The restraining order was withdrawn by Boyd on Aug. 9, 2000.Denson’s brushes with law continued in January of 2001 when she was arrested for driving under the influence. She received a two-year deferred judgment and sentence. In the psychiatric review of Denson performed by Dr. Michael Gahagan, Denson was described as having a family history of drug and alcohol abuse, ongoing relationship issues and financial stress with her family.Denson is currently being held in Eagle County Jail on a $5 million bond set by Judge Diem. Her civil attorney, Frank Zlogar, reportedly said at Denson’s July 1 court appearance that his client will plead not guilty at her next court appearance, set for July 16.
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