Teen killed in Colorado Springs Walgreens was stabbed more than 40 times

The teenager allegedly killed by a co-worker inside a Walgreens in Colorado Springs was stabbed 42 times, according to an autopsy report released this week.

Riley Whitelaw was 17 when she was stabbed to death June 11 while working at the Walgreens store at 6820 Centennial Blvd., according to police. One of her co-workers, Joshua Johnson, 28, has been charged with first-degree murder in the case.

Prior to her death, Whitelaw had reported Johnson to management, saying he made her feel uncomfortable and that he’d made unwarranted advances toward her, according to an arrest affidavit. She had requested a work schedule to avoid Johnson, but their schedules overlapped when Whitelaw requested to work more hours.

On Tuesday, the El Paso County Coroner’s Office released an 18-page autopsy report along with a two-page toxicology report on Whitelaw’s death. The toxicology report showed that the teen had no drugs in her blood system.

Whitelaw, who was killed in the store’s break room, suffered multiple stab wounds to her face, neck and chest, according to the autopsy. She also had injuries to her arms and hands, indicative of self-defense wounds, according to the report. The coroner ruled her death a homicide. Multiple neck wounds from a single-edged knife caused her death.

The store was shut down after the killing and remains closed, according to the company’s website.

Reports by Colorado Springs news outlets earlier this week about the findings of the autopsy prompted sharp criticism from the city’s police department.

“We are extremely disappointed in the actions of KRDO NewsChannel 13/KRDO.com and KKTV 11 News in publishing the graphic details of the autopsy report of Miss Riley Whitelaw,” police said in a news release.

Police officials went on to say that the stories “have only re-victimized” Whitelaw’s family, describing the reports as “disrespectful and undignified.”

“Other news agencies had this autopsy report and made the ethical decision not to publish the details of this tragic event,” police said.

A preliminary hearing for Johnson is scheduled on Sept. 16, according to court records.

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