Letter: How my case was tainted
Note: This is the second part of a letter printed in two parts due to space constraints.
During the time he lived in the home he owed 1,080 hours of labor to me (half a year of work full time.) The work he did, (often poorly completed or partially done) is estimated at 330 hours or 42 regular business days work. When I told him that he had to leave, I suffered a battering with the door of the home, in the hands of the renter, (he told the Deputy that the door hit my foot and leg by accident but later admitted to putting his weight against the door after it closed on my leg) and I had to go through two months of physical therapy after being assaulted. He sold or gave away an armoire of mine while he was renting from me (against my directions.) He told me that I had to remodel a bathroom that had been remodeled five years earlier because there was black mold coming out of the jets on a jetted two person tub. He sold my pedestal sink and toilet. He admitted to law enforcement that he took items from the home when he vacated as well as the armoire disposal. He left my home damaged severely, causing me to have to pay about $5,000 to repair and clean.
I took a copy of laws that were put in place by the Colorado Legislature, Colorado Revised Statutes 18-6.5-101 through 108, to Undersheriff Wayne Schaeffer, at the Sheriff’s Office, in September 2017. I spoke to Sheriff Schroetlin about how no report was written. He decided not to instruct his investigators to pursue documentation and evidence of the crime of abuse to an at-risk elder. The District Attorney’s office was not brought the appropriate evidence in the case. The D.A., Brett Barkey, was told about the case by County Commissioner Kris Manguso. Barkey emailed Manguso that he would have his investigator, Doug Winters, go over the evidence (being brought in the case) with me before the case was closed, later Winters refused to meet with me. The investigation done by Leo Piechocki stated that his own opinion was that I was not injured in the assault when two different doctors had put on forms under DIAGNOSIS: Sprains, strains, and soft tissue damage.
Is Grand County going to keep justice from the people who can’t afford an attorney? Is law enforcement only going to happen for those rich enough to afford protection under the law? It seems like, “With liberty and justice for all” just doesn’t apply here, even when laws are written in our own state to meet out greater punishments to those who abuse the elderly and the at-risk.
In several other counties in Colorado, prosecuting these kinds of cases is routine.
Form the Grand County Oversight Committee. Start the discourse between the citizens, governing bodies, and the law enforcement community.
At the anniversary of the attack on Granby by Marv Heemeyer, let’s create an atmosphere of trust and real justice in our county and not let frustrations with the system get over the top.
Gayle Kimi Simon, Grand Lake (with assistance from Francesca “Jo” Cowgill)
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