Change to Boulder criminal obstruction definition draws criticism, causes confusion

Daily Camera (Boulder): Boulder activists are concerned a change made Tuesday to a city code defining the crime of obstructing a peace officer will threaten government transparency.

But City Attorney Tom Carr insists their worries stem from a misinterpretation of how the code is changing, and that police will actually have less grounds to charge someone with the crime under the new definition.

Under the previous criminal code, Carr said peace officers, which will now be defined as firefighters, emergency medical service providers and some volunteers for such agencies, in addition to police officers, can legally order members of the public to step back 8 feet from where officials are working. People can be charged with obstruction if they do not comply.

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