Judge approves delay in case of alleged victim in standoff

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A Craig woman whose complaints of assault set off a 12-hour police standoff appeared in court Thursday to face charges stemming from the vandalism of two police cars.

Megan Valenzuela, 18, requested a second continuance in her case.

The Craig woman is exploring financial options for entering a drug rehabilitation program, her attorney, Erick Nordstrom, said.

Valenzuela is charged with criminal mischief, obstructing government operations and tampering with a motor vehicle.

She has admitted to police that she vandalized two Colorado State Patrol cars with a hammer July 30 because she was angry that she could not talk to her boyfriend, Jonathan Crook, 23.

Crook was in jail after he held police at bay for 12 hours with what police reports refer to as "a dangerous weapon." The standoff occurred July 26.

District Judge Paul McLimans granted her request for a delay.

Valenzuela's allegations that Crook had choked and hit her led Craig police to arrest him on charges of second-degree murder, causing serious bodily injury and possession of firearms.

Since then, Valenzuela has said in answers to questions from Crook's defense attorneys that she lied when she told police that Crook choked her until she blacked out.

She said she'd been on a methamphetamine binge the previous day.

Valenzuela also admitted in court that she made contact with Crook on the phone while in jail to tell him that she still wanted to be together. When questioned, she said she wanted to reunite with Crook and get married.

"I forgive him for what he's done," she said.

Rob Gebhart can be reached at 824-7031 or rgebhart@craigdailypress.com.

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