DA declines charges against man arrested in Blue Bear vandalism; asks police to investigate more

Green paint dumped on bear causes $11,000 damage

DENVER - Denver prosecutors declined to charge a man arrested in connection with the vandalism of the big Blue Bear statue on Wednesday, returning the case to Denver Police for further investigation.

Denver Police spokesman Sonny Jackson said the investigation is ongoing and the suspect, Joseph Rivas, was released Wednesday from jail on bond.

Police said the 21-year-old Rivas was arrested Tuesday on investigation of criminal mischief -- or vandalism.

On March 31, someone dumped bright green paint on the Blue Bear, causing an estimated $11,000 in damage, Jackson said.

The sculpture, officially entitled "I See What You Mean," was created by artist Lawrence Argent and installed in 2005. The bear peers into the main lobby of the Colorado Convention Center with its front paws and nose pressed against the outer window.