DENVER (AP) — Investigators believe a man found dead in a burned car outside Denver was shot by his partner in a marijuana growing operation, possibly while harvesting plants.
The body of Jason Dosa, a 44-year-old father of two from Parker, was found Sept. 20 in the trunk of the car after the fire was put out in a ditch west of Chatfield State Park. One of his two partners in the marijuana grow, Shawn Geerdes, 46, has been charged with first-degree murder in his death and is being held without bond.
Investigators haven't disclosed a motive or what events led up to Dosa's killing.
Investigators found drops of Dosa's blood inside a marijuana greenhouse at Geerdes' home in Agate, about 100 miles from where his body was found, and believe he was shot and killed there, according to court documents first reported on by The Denver Post on Monday. According to court documents, casings from .22-caliber bullets — the same kind Dosa is believed to have been killed with — were found on the floor.
Dosa and the third partner — whose name was redacted from the documents — agreed to build a greenhouse for the operation in exchange for a share of the harvest. However, the deal broke down, and Dosa lost a "substantial" amount of money, according to court documents.
Two days before Dosa's killing, Geerdes showed Dosa, who filed for bankruptcy in July, and the other partner 35 mature marijuana plants in the greenhouse.
"Jason was impressed with the size and quality of the marijuana plants," the unnamed partner told investigators.
According to the documents, someone told investigators that Dosa left his home carrying a box and tree trimmers at 2:45 a.m. on the day he was killed. He told relatives he was going to make between $20,000 and $30,000.
Investigators found two shell casings for .22-caliber bullets — the same kind technicians believe killed Dosa — on the floor. A neighbor who could not sleep told investigators that he heard about 10 shots fired sometime between 2:30 and 4 a.m., and then, after about 15 minutes of silence, saw someone walking with a flashlight in front of Geerdes' house, according to court records.
Geerdes' lawyer didn't return a call seeking comment Monday.
A hearing to determine whether Geerdes should stand trial in Dosa's killing is scheduled for Nov. 23.