By Rick Sallinger

NEDERLAND, Colo. (CBS4) – The theory goes back to 1971, the place was the Pioneer Inn in Nederland on 1st Street where a hippie called Deputy Dawg, who was really 19-year-old Guy Goughner, was involved in a disturbance. Former Boulder County Sheriff George Epp recalled what happened with CBS4’s Rick Sallinger.

“The bartender called the marshal who came and loaded him into a car and that’s the last anybody saw of him until his body was found in Clear Creek County,” Epp told Sallinger.

The man who was killed was part of what was known as STP, a hippie group. The letters are said to have stood for “serenity, tranquility, peace.”

Also part of that group was David Michael Ansberry, known then as Midget Jesse due to his 3 1/2-foot height. His alias was Jesse Howard. He is now under arrest by federal authorities in Chicago on charges involving the backpack bomb left at Nederland police headquarters.

Michael David Ansberry (credit: CBS)

Michael David Ansberry (credit: CBS)

An FBI working theory is that the motive was revenge against the former town marshal Renner Forbes who 27 years later confessed to the murder according to Epp.

“My understanding he was just frustrated with these rowdy young kids,” Epp told Sallinger.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

Forbes confession came at a nursing home where one of Epp’s deputies noticed Forbes had been living. An investigator was sent to talk with Forbes since the former Nederland town marshal had long been suspected in the murder. Epp says the confession came because Forbes wanted to get it off before he passed away.

Forbes pleaded guilty and was sentenced to the rest of his life on probation. He has since passed away.

CBS4’s Rick Sallinger is a Peabody award winning reporter who has been with the station more than two decades doing hard news and investigative reporting. Follow him on Twitter @ricksallinger.

  1. Katie says:

    Hi! I’m a Little Person who lives in Nederland, but that point is null in this comment. The word midget is extremely offensive in the Little Person community. Yes, within this article that word is used as “in group” language to describe Ansberry, but it should still be noted to everyone that the word midget is derogatory and offensive. Just a note to keep in mind as the Little Person community continues to battle use of that word everywhere we go. Thank you.

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