An arrest document details how police came to identify a transient young couple as suspects in a fatal September 28 shooting in Cañon City.
According to the affidavit, 39-year-old Richard Fay’s body was found outside a home that his parents recently had purchased on Spruce Court. He had died of a single fatal gunshot wound.
As police identified the victim and learned more from family members, they began combing through records of his cell phone use.
Texts drew an apparent connection between Fay and a young couple whose car had broken down near Cañon City en route from North Carolina to Las Vegas, according to people who knew Fay.
Police obtained texts from the dead man’s phone offering insight into a possible romantic relationship with a woman named Madi, even though he’d told his mother that Madi was in a relationship with someone else.
Later investigation would lead detectives to believe “Madi” was Madison Blackburn, 21, who had a boyfriend, Luciano Pogorzelski, also from Gaston County, North Carolina.
As investigators zeroed in on leads from Fay’s phone, a text exchange from the day he died stood out. In it, Fay texted to Blackburn, “Love you all the time and miss your laugh, hurry up and get here, so I can say hi.”
Just minutes later, he texted again, “Never mind, I get the understanding that you done with me cause I’m in love with your girlfriend. As a man, I can understand that.”
A neighbor, who’d been recording a Snapchat video at the time of the shooting, had heard a woman scream, “No!” immediately after hearing a shot ring out.
The neighbor told police she saw an Audi sedan speed away, and believed it had been the same Audi spotted at Fay’s home in the days prior to his shooting.
Searches of phone records, social media posts and vehicle registrations led officers not just to the North Carolina couple, but to another man in Pueblo West who’d also met the couple when their car broke down in Cañon City.
Investigators say they interviewed the witness, who described going with the couple to shoot guns at a nearby area in Phantom Canyon. A later police search turned up shell casings similar to the one found by Fay’s body.
That witness also said Pogorzelski told him he had “had to shoot his way out of a situation” when some guy who was trying to steal his girlfriend tried to hurt him, according to the legal papers.
As investigators widened their net to try to find the two suspects, they spoke to officers in North Carolina, who told them Pogorzelski was previously alleged to have fired shots into a car belonging to an ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend. Those allegations never resulted in a criminal charge, however.
According to the court documents, Pogorzelski’s stepfather, Gaston County District Judge Craig Collins, hired a lawyer for him even before the couple was found and arrested for second degree murder.
As of Monday, October 21, Pogorzelski and Blackburn remain jailed in North Carolina, awaiting transfer back to Colorado.
KRDO Only 2019