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Salida High School principal arrested

Talmage Trujillo was off campus with a Horizons Exploratory Academy student who was threatening to kill himself, the arrest affidavit says.
Generic photo of handcuffs

SALIDA, Colo. — The principal of Salida High School was arrested after he refused to cooperate with the Salida Police Department (SPD) during a lockdown last week, according to an arrest affidavit.

Talmage Trujillo is facing charges of:

  • harboring a minor
  • obstructing a peace officer
  • obstructing government operations
  • official misconduct

All charges that Trujillo faces are misdemeanor charges.

On Thursday, SPD officers responded to Salida High School when someone called police to report someone was near the school who had made suicidal comments and had a gun, the affidavit says.

The high school, along with Salida Middle School and Horizons Exploratory Academy, were placed in lockout. A lockout means exterior doors of the school building are locked and no one is allowed in or out of the building.

The person who made the comments was a student at Horizons Exploratory Academy, an alternative education school, but had not attended classes this year, the affidavit says. He was at Salida High School that day for a meeting with the school nurse when he became upset and left the building while threatening to "put a bullet in his head," according to the affidavit. 

Trujillo saw the student leaving the building and followed him, according to the affidavit. 

When SPD officers arrived at the school, they were unable to find Trujillo or the student, and placed Salida High School on lockdown. That means students are hidden out of sight in dark, locked classrooms.

The affidavit says Trujillo stayed with the student but refused to tell officers where he and the student were and told another administrator to release the lockdown without SPD's permission.

He eventually took the student to a district administration building at the direction of the superintendent, according to the affidavit. Police found him there and were able to release the lockdown. 

The affidavit also says Trujillo attempted to arrange for the student to stay at a hotel despite a safety plan that was put into place by the police department and a mental health center for the night following the incident.

"[Trujillo's] refusal to cooperate and deceitful message regarding his whereabouts caused three schools within Salida to be in restrictive measures and schools within other jurisdictions to begin restrictive measures," the affidavit reads. "[Trujillo] was given opportunities and orders to show cooperation and he refused to do so."

The student has now been placed into custody of the Department of Human Services, according to the affidavit.

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