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Denver DA will hand off any case regarding Colorado state Rep. Saine to special prosecutor in Boulder County

Author: Jessica Machetta - December 12, 2017 - Updated: December 12, 2017

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SaineBooking photo of Rep. Lori Saine provided by the Denver police following her arrest at DIA. (Denver Police via AP)

Denver District Attorney Beth McCann will hand off any case against Colorado state Rep. Lori Saine, who allegedly carried a loaded firearm into Denver International Airport last week, to a special prosecutor in Boulder County, according to an email sent from her office Tuesday to Colorado Politics.

McCann’s office says it requested that the 20th Judicial District Attorney’s Office be the special prosecutor in the case and that office agreed.

McCann and Saine served together in the Colorado legislature, working closely together on legislation such as the felony DUI law in 2015.

“Given her personal connection to Representative Saine, in the interest of justice and to ensure fair and impartial consideration of the matter, McCann determined the involvement of another district attorney’s office would be appropriate,” McCann’s office said in a statement. “When the Denver Police Department concludes its investigation, it will present the case, if any, to the Boulder District Attorney’s Office for consideration as to the filing of charges.”

Saine was arrested when airport security found a loaded 9mm semi-automatic pistol in carry-on bag on Dec. 5. Denver police spokesman Gregory Zimmerman said the Weld County Republican “knowingly brought the handgun to the checkpoint.”

Police said the gun, loaded with four rounds, was detected by a security line X-ray machine.

Saine could face a charge of introducing a firearm into a transportation facility, which could be a misdemeanor or felony. The maximum penalty for a felony conviction is up to 10 years in jail and a fine of up to $10,000. A misdemeanor charge carries a maximum of one year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Randy Corporon, a Tea Party leader who also hosts a conservative radio show, is representing Saine in the case.

Politically, Saine has been a staunch supporter of gun rights. She has sponsored bills to repeal the 15-round limit on ammunition magazines, which Democratic lawmakers argue could help limit the casualties in mass shootings, during the last two legislative sessions.

Colorado Politics reporter Joey Bunch contributed to this report.

Jessica Machetta