Christopher Watts’ attorneys request DNA samples from bodies of wife, children
Latest updates: Homicides of Shanann Watts, daughters
  • Follow me on:

Michael Konopasek is an anchor and reporter at FOX31 Denver and Colorado’s Own Channel 2 News. He anchors Daybreak on Sunday mornings from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. and reports weekday afternoons and evenings.

He is an Emmy Award-winning journalist who arrived in Denver in August of 2016. Before calling Denver home, Michael was a reporter at NBC affiliate KING-TV in Seattle and CBS affiliate KWTV-TV in Oklahoma City.

Michael’s work as a journalist has affected change in people’s lives. While in Colorado, his reporting prompted state leaders to commit to a public dialogue on establishing best practices for AMBER Alerts following a delayed alert in 2017.

In the same year, the Denver Police Department credited Michael for bringing the Safe Place program to its attention. His coverage of the anti-hate crime initiative in Seattle led to the adoption of a Safe Place program in Denver.

He has covered news that has attracted national and international attention, including his gavel-to-gavel coverage of the Taylor Swift sex assault trial in 2017 and what was Washington state’s largest wildfire in 2014.

Michael also served as a TEGNA correspondent— reporting for television stations across the country— during the 2015 Umpqua Community College shooting in Roseburg, Oregon.

Michael was part of Edward R. Murrow Award-winning coverage of the 2014 Marysville Pilchuck High School shooting near Seattle. A year earlier, he reported live from the heart of the deadly Moore, Oklahoma tornado destruction path moments after the EF5 twister devastated the area.

His coverage of the tragedy was honored with a regional Emmy Award in 2014. Michael was awarded a second Emmy Award in 2018 for his coverage of a deadly ambush of sheriff’s deputies in suburban Denver.

In his free time, Michael volunteers with Healthy Learning Paths— a nonprofit organization that provides affordable health education for children across Colorado. He emcees the group’s annual “Race 4Kids’ Health” in Broomfield.

Michael is originally from the Northwest Indiana suburbs of Chicago and is a former Chicago double-decker bus tour guide.

He is a proud graduate of Ball State University. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in telecommunications and a minor in political science. While studying at Ball State, Michael served as an intern for the United States Congress and Chicago’s ABC-owned WLS-TV.

He loves cycling, history, politics and traveling. His journeys– for both work and pleasure– have taken him to all 50 states and several countries.

In 2018, Michael was part of a journalism fellowship allowing him to report from the Korean Demilitarized Zone amid international efforts to rid the peninsula of nuclear weapons.

Recent Articles
  • Shanann Watts remembered as loving mother, friendly neighbor

    FREDERICK, Colo. — A makeshift memorial continues to grow outside a family home in Fredrick where loved ones and strangers have paid tribute to the lives lost. Christopher Watts is accused of killing his pregnant wife Shanann, 34 and two young daughters, 4-year-old Bella and 3-year-old Celeste. A motive remains unclear. The tragedy has left a neighborhood saddened and surprised. The family would often be seen walking to a neighborhood park, neighbors say. “I just can’t stop thinking about them,” […]

  • North Korean defectors are hopeful amid ‘beautification of Kim Jong-un’

    SEOUL, South Korea — History was made two months ago Sunday as President Donald Trump walked across a platform in Singapore to shake hands with the supreme leader of North Korea. Since the summit, critics have argued little has been accomplished. Regardless, the Trump administration continues working publicly to convince Kim Jong-un to give up his nuclear capabilities. It’s an effort that has created a new sense of hope for scores of people in South Korea as they yearn for […]

  • Colorado works to woo Fortune 250 company’s headquarters to Denver area

    DENVER — State economic leaders are hoping to more than make up for the loss of Chipotle’s headquarters as they work hard to bring a Fortune 250 company to the Denver area. The state is prepared to throw $27 million at the company in tax incentives. The details of the bid are being kept secret — but as negotiations happen behind closed doors, some clues have been revealed as to what kind of company people could expect. The Colorado Economic […]

  • Pot money helps Jefferson County schools hire new nurses, specialists

    JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. — Leaders of Jefferson County Public Schools are using marijuana money to help them steer kids away from lighting up. Some of the cash going into cash registers to purchase marijuana is now being used by the school district. “We really had to fight hard for what we got,” said Julie Wilken, the district’s director of health services. An $800,000-a-year state grant– for three years– has allowed the district to hire three new school nurses and six […]

  • Man attacked by grizzly bear continues series of operations in Colorado

    ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Doctors are continuing their work to reconstruct a man’s face after it was torn off by a grizzly bear. In November, FOX31 introduced Lee Brooke — a hunter from Pennsylvania — who went toe-to-toe with a grizzly bear in Wyoming. Brooke was airlifted to Swedish Medical Center in Englewood after most of his face was torn off by the bear. His survival was nothing short of a miracle. As Brooke continues to recover, doctors are moving forward […]

  • Pot money to fund replacement of decades-old school in Commerce City

    COMMERCE CITY, Colo. — A nearly 60-year-old elementary school in Adams County School District 14 is falling apart. Structural deficiencies and smelly sewage issues are just two of the concerns for parents and children at Alsup Elementary School in Commerce City. But the community won’t have to deal with those concerns indefinitely. Thanks to the marijuana industry in Colorado, a wrecking ball is set to hit the school in order to build a new one. Meanwhile, employees at Alsup are […]

  • Family of man killed in double shooting: He died a hero

    ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. — A man killed in a double shooting on Thursday in Arapahoe County is being called a hero. The family of Jacob Emerson has learned their loved one died while saving a woman’s life. That woman’s future is uncertain. The shooting left her hospitalized in critical condition. Jacob’s mom, Elizabeth Emerson, said her son was in the wrong place at the wrong time. He was visiting a woman he just started dating and was unaware her ex-husband […]

  • Nonprofits fly dogs and cats to Colorado to find forever homes

    CENTENNIAL, Colo. — Dogs and cats in need of families got off a plane Sunday morning in Centennial. Officials hope those animals will be placed with people in Utah, Montana and Colorado. Volunteers with various nonprofits saved than 100 dogs and cats that were at risk of being killed in shelters in New Mexico. The ongoing effort moves pets from parts of the United States where they aren’t wanted to areas where they are in high demand. Since the founding […]

  • Attorney: Veteran killed by Aurora police saved grandson from naked intruder

    AURORA, Colo. — Details surrounding the killing of a Colorado veteran at the hands of the Aurora Police Department have been released by the attorney for the man’s family. The attorney, Siddhartha Rathod, said the veteran, Richard “Gary” Black, was inside his living room when a police officer opened fire. Black was a U.S. Army lieutenant in the Vietnam War and was honored with the Bronze Star and Purple Heart. He went on to continue serving his country as a federal […]

  • Armed homeowner killed by police was Vietnam veteran, Purple Heart recipient

    AURORA, Colo. — Family members have identified the armed homeowner who was shot and killed by Aurora police early Monday as Richard “Gary” Black. Family members say he was a grandfather and Vietnam veteran. They said he was trying to defend his home to protect his family when he was shot. “Decorated Army veteran Richard ‘Gary’ Black died a hero by shooting and killing a naked intruder who was trying to kill his 11-year-old grandson,” the attorney for his family, Siddhartha […]

  • People living near deadly apartment fire face risk of asbestos

    WESTMINSTER, Colo. — People living near Westminster apartment units that caught fire on July 22 are facing serious health concerns. Restoration experts indicated to city leaders that asbestos was in the building, according to a letter from the fire chief to residents. The fire sent smoke and debris flying through the air. Signs warning of asbestos can be found around the perimeter of the fire destruction site where two women were killed. “I knew the night of the fire … […]

  • Westminster apartment victim died saving others, friends say

    WESTMINSTER, Colo. — Loved ones are remembering 41-year-old Lea Hamel — one of two women killed in a Westminster apartment fire on Sunday. Friends called Lea a selfless person who would help anyone in need. They said she died saving lives while warning people of the fire. “We’re all heartbroken,” Hamel’s friend Sam Taki said. “We’re all devastated. It doesn’t seem real.” Hamel, who used to live in Colorado, had moved to Florida but was back in the state visiting […]