On Monday July 4, 2022, at approximately 9:19 p.m., Trinidad Police Officers were dispatched to the Central Park Baseball Stadium for a report of a crowd being sprayed with pepper spray. Trinidad Fire Department personnel were on scene and advised the Trinidad Dispatch Center to send officers to their location.
Upon approaching the stadium officers observed multiple parties who had been suffering from the effects of being sprayed with pepper spray. Officers contacted the female party, later identified as Korie Howlett, that was responsible for spraying the crowd with pepper spray. Howlett had a can of bear attack deterrent in her possession.
Howlett stated that she had the spray with her because of an unrelated incident that involved stalking between her and an ex-boyfriend and she only had the spray to defend herself.
At this point in time officers noted the odor of an unknown alcoholic beverage emitting from Howlett's breath and it appeared that Howlett was under the influence of alcohol.
Officers spoke to various witnesses. According to those statements, Howlett was shouting obscenities at the fireworks display while others were attempting to enjoy the evening. Multiple parties at the event asked Howlett to be quiet or leave due to children being present. When Howlett refused to stop causing a disturbance, multiple partied attempted to approach her to ask her to leave, and that is when she began spraying people without being provoked.
Due to the stadium being occupied by a large crowd of people there was multiple secondary exposures, and not all witnesses were able to give a statement or left the scene prior to speaking to officers.
Howlett was placed at the Las Animas County Detention Center on one count of attempted Assault in the Second Degree, a class 6 felony; five counts of Assault in the Third Degree, class 1 misdemeanor; one count of Child Abuse, a class 3 misdemeanor; and Disorderly Conduct, class 3 misdemeanor.
Anyone with additional information is asked to contact the Trinidad Police Department at 719-846-4441.