Charges dismissed against Joergensen, will be released from state hospital

ALAMOSA — After almost four years of court proceedings, including being found incompetent to stand trial multiple times, Chief Judge Gregory Lyman with the Colorado District Court has dismissed all charges against Jesper Joergensen.

Jesper Joergensen, 56, is a Danish national who was in the country illegally when he was initially charged in 2018 with 349 felony counts of first-degree arson in connection with the 2018 Spring Creek Fire. The fire burned more than 108,000 acres, destroyed 141 structures and cost $32 million to fight.

According to court documents, in early March 12th Judicial District Attorney Alonzo Payne had moved to dismiss all charges in the case with the intention of transferring custody of Joergensen to Department of Homeland Services and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, after which Joergensen could potentially be deported to Denmark.

When that failed, Payne declared his intention to refile charges against Joergensen out of a fear that, if set free, the defendant posed a danger to himself and others.

When counsel and the defendant appeared in court on Monday, April 4, Judge Lyman dismissed the case. DA Payne told the Valley Courier that his office, with assistance from the DA’s office in Huerfano County, planned to file an appeal.

It is presumed that, following Monday’s court ruling, Joergensen will be released from the Colorado State Hospital. Where he will go from there was unknown.