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BOULDER, Colo. (KDVR) — Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold reflected on the events of the past year since the King Soopers mass shooting tragedy that killed 10 people, including one of her officers.  

“I think it’s been extremely challenging on a number of fronts. At the same time I’ve never been so hopeful we’ll get through this and come out on the other side. I don’t think I will ever be the same. The police department will never be the same, but I’m hopeful we are all healing and we’re going to get through this. I know the community has been there with us every step of the way, I know they feel the same way I do. I don’t think any of us will ever forget that day and what we all went through together. I’m hopeful we’ll all get through it,” Herold told FOX31’s Deborah Takahara. 

“I’m proud of the investigators that handled this gruesome scene and so they face unique challenges. 

“I have to hope when the court hearing gets resolved, that will be closer to complete healing for these detectives and staff that had to see those gruesome film footage. Nobody should have to do that. But they did an excellent job, and I’m forever grateful that we had great partners with this,” Herold said. 

The prosecution is on hold while medical experts evaluate the suspect’s mental competency to stand trial. Herold said a conviction is an important part of the healing process.

“It’s critical. It’s critical. I feel it, the DA’s team, the community but it is one of the most critical parts of the healing process, I’m confident we will get the resolution we all seek. And that is justice. It has to be part of this story. It just has to be. I think (the delay) is frustrating on a personal note, but professionally, I understand it’s a process and as a professional, I want all the rights guaranteed under the constitution adhered to, because that’s justice too. It’s hard. But I’m confident we will get the results this community deserves, and this police department deserves,” Herold said. 

She said officers have taken part in unique therapies, like acupuncture, animal and art therapy, as well as traditional counseling. She said it will take time to heal. 

How the community has helped in the last year

She also wants to thank the community for its continued support. 

“I couldn’t have done it without the outpouring of support from the community, in so many different ways. I still receive cards to this day. I still receive emails from all over the world about this incident. I have seen a lot of horrific incidents over my career. The response the state of Colorado and this community gave me and our police department should never be forgotten. And I will never forget this never.  

“I went to this beautiful reception a couple of weeks ago, portraits of people impacted by this tragedy. The reception I received when I walked in was unbelievable. It brought me right back to March 22. It was so powerful, that there are people so caring and so compassionate. How do you ever say enough thank yous for that? I couldn’t have done it without the community. I wouldn’t want to. It would be horrific. That’s all I can say, Deborah, is just thanks,” she said.  

Herold continued, “It’s strange what brings you back to that day, but yes, I feel like we’ve been through a journey. Then sometimes I’ll be sitting at that desk and it will seem like it just happened. Certain things bring you right back to that day.” 

She said it is important to remember the sacrifice Talley made and police officers across the country make unfortunately way too often in this country, but March 22 is a difficult day.

“It’s a reminder of all the pain. I lost both parents, I don’t think there’s a day that goes by I don’t think of them in some way or another. My mother’s birthday was on March 22, so I don’t think I will ever disentangle that, but it comes the pain starts lessening over the years. It will kind of be like my mother’s death, it will always be with you. It’s there. It’s part of your heart that’s gone. And this is how this incident will forever impact me,” Herold said. 

She said Talley’s wife is doing well and stays in contact with officers at the department.

“Because of her spirituality, she really is doing well and so is her family. She is very resilient. I know that Leah thinks about Eric every day, but I think she has fond memories. And her spirituality carries her through. I think people are not at the healing process they want to remember Eric and what a great cop he was and how kind he was and all themes that ran through his life,” she said. 

The community has been invited to leave notes in front of the Boulder Police Department and a memorial service is planned for the public Tuesday at 2 p.m. at Boulder PD.