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Old 02-14-2021, 05:40 AM
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https://denver.cbslocal.com/2021/02/...death-assault/

2nd Person Arrested in Beating Death of 18-Year-Old Danielle Hopton
February 12, 2021 at 11:58 pm



FORT COLLINS, Colo. (CBS4) – A woman who was found fatally injured in a Fort Collins parking lot last weekend has been identified by the Larimer County Coroner’s Office as 18-year-old Danielle Hopton of Fort Collins.

The man arrested by police following her death, 20-year-old Stephen McNeil, appeared in Larimer County District Court on Friday morning.


Friday afternoon, Fort Collins Police Services announced the arrest of a second person, Ian Rayas, also 20, of Timnath.

The three were among a group of friends who drove to the Whispering Pines Apartments at 525 East Drake Road late Saturday night, according to a press release from Fort Collins Police Services. Investigators learned Hopton and McNeil, who had been in a relationship, stepped out of the car to talk. McNeil then allegedly assaulted Hopton. Other members of the group called 9-1-1 as McNeil left the scene, according to police.

Hopton died at the hospital.

Police arrested McNeil at noon the next day.

Rayas was questioned by investigators but denied knowing either McNeil or Hopton or anything that happened between them that night, police stated.

But investigators found “evidence to the contrary” and arrested him Thursday.



McNeil is being held for investigation of 1st Degree Murder, Domestic Violence, Violation of a Protection Order, and Violation of Bail Bond Conditions.

The coroner’s office has not yet determined a cause of death. But in a press release from Fort Collins Police Services, her injuries were described as the result of an assault.

“This heinous act of violence took a woman’s life and forever changed the lives of her loved ones,” stated Investigations Lieutenant Jeremy Yonce in FCPS’s press release.

Rayas is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday on two felonies, including an accessory to crime charge.



CBS4 discovered through a search of online criminal records that McNeil was arrested in mid-December for a felony assault that involved strangulation. He was also arrested in January was for misdemeanor criminal mischief.

McNeil bonded out of jail Jan. 22nd via cash bonds totaling $2,650.

Other than to confirm the pair were in a relationship, spokespersons for the police department and the 8th Judicial District Attorney’s Office have refused to answer questions about any connection between McNeil’s two previous arrests and the current one involving Hopton’s death.

The judge presiding over the murder case has also sealed documents in both of the previous cases.

A disposition hearing in the strangulation case is scheduled for March 4th. The same is scheduled in the homicide case nearly a month later.



Offender Name:
MCNEIL, STEPHEN DARWIN
Custody Status:
In Custody
Age:
20
Location:
Larimer County Sheriff's Office
Race:
African American
Contact Facility:
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