Man's 911 calls lead to former sheriff's arrest in meth-for-sex scheme | Crime
ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. -- New information is coming to light in the case against former Arapahoe County Sheriff Pat Sullivan, who is being held in the Arapahoe County jail accused of exchanging meth for sex with a male informant.
Sullivan was arrested Tuesday, but that wasn't his first interaction with authorities.
Dillon Grilley says he called 911 on Sept. 20, because Pat Sullivan wouldn't leave his house on East Jamison Place in Centennial.
In his 911 call, Grilley is heard saying, "He's actually someone who's harboring drug addicts and prostitutes."
"I didn't want the drugs in the house. I didn't want him in the house," Grilley said at his home on Thursday.
Grilley says he didn't know much about Sullivan at the time, but he didn't like what Sullivan was allegedly doing with three young men who were Grilley's new roommates.
"They've been over here high several times, up all night long. Pat's here every hour in and out," Grilley said.
He called 911 three times that night, and says Sullivan didn't like it.
"He said if you want the police, I am the police," Grilley said.
Grilley says he was terrified to take action against Sullivan, but is glad he did.
"Now that it's all being uncovered, I'm just happy that justice is being served and that this man has no power anymore."
Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson acknowledged Wednesday that he was aware former Aprapahoe County Sheriff Patrick Sullivan was leading an alternative lifestyle, but says there was nothing to suggest Sullivan was involved in criminal activity.
That changed two weeks ago after confidential informants and audio and video surveillance led to Sullivan's arrest on suspicion of trying to trade drugs to a man for sex.
Further complicating the investigation are claims that Sullivan, who may be <runtime:topic id="HEDAI0000088">HIV</runtime:topic>-positive, knowingly engaged in unprotected sex without disclosing his condition to his partners; failure to do so is a crime.
During a short court appearance Wednesday Arapahoe County chief judge William Sylvester increased Sullivan's bond from $250,000 to $500,000 and set formal filing of charges for Monday, Dec. 5.
The judge also issued an order preventing Sullivan from having contact with any potential witnesses in the case.
Sullivan's attorney protested the increase because no charges have been filed yet.
Sullivan is facing felony charges for allegedly using and distributing <runtime:topic id="HEDAR00000164">methamphetamine</runtime:topic> in exchange for sex, according to Robinson, acknowledging that more arrests are likely.
Detectives with the South Metro Drug Task Force worked with two informants who said they could get methamphetamine from Sullivan in exchange for sexual acts.
A meeting was arranged at the house in Aurora. Investigators had set up audio and video recording equipment inside the house. The affidavit says they witnessed Sullivan hand what appeared to be drugs to an informant Tuesday. They arrested the former sheriff without incident.
The Class 5 felony could carry a penalty of up to six years in prison upon conviction.
The one-time national Sheriff of the Year is being held in the jail that bears his name, the "Patrick J. Sullivan, Jr. Detention Facility."
Neighbors say SWAT team members in ski masks raided a home at Ada Pl. and Memphis Way in Aurora at about 4 p.m. Tuesday.
Neighbors say they saw investigators take many items out of the house, and FOX31 Denver has learned that some of the confiscated materials included gay pornography and computers.
“The allegations of criminal behavior involving Pat Sullivan are extraordinarily disturbing,” Robinson says.
The investigation began less than two weeks ago on November 17, when several people came forward with evidence that Sullivan, 68, was selling meth in exchange for sex.
According to investigators, Sullivan "arranged to meet an adult male acquaintance and agreed to provide the (man) with methamphetamine in exchange for a sexual encounter."
Sullivan was taken into custody after allegedly providing meth to the man.
Sullivan served as the Arapahoe County Sheriff from 1984 until his retirement in 2002. He was named national "Sheriff of the Year" in 2001. Upon retirement, he served as head of security for Cherry Creek Schools.
“While the arrest of the former sheriff is very troubling, the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office continues to ensure that those who are responsible for criminal behavior and the victimization of our community will be held accountable by the criminal justice system," says Robinson, who served as Sullivan's undersheriff before taking the top job upon his mentor's retirement.
"No one, and particularly a current or a former peace officer, is above the law."
Sullivan's daughter, Pam Sullivan, told FOX31 Denver's Julie Hayden Tuesday night that the family is still in shock.
"We're still trying to figure out what has happened to our family and we really don't know what to say," Sullivan says. "We're in shock, saddened, and we're trying to understand what's happening. And we just really would appreciate everyone understand that we need some privacy."
Sullivan is one of the best known and highly respected law enforcement officers in Colorado.
In 1989, he took it upon himself to rescue an injured deputy during a standoff in Littleton. The daring, dangerous rescue played out in front of television news cameras.
<runtime:topic id="PEPLT007410">President Bill Clinton</runtime:topic> named Sullivan to the National Commission on Crime Prevention and Control in 1995. He testified before congressional subcommittees on various law enforcement issues.
He also participated on Colorado's Meth Task Force, supporting the fight to crack down on the drug's growth in Colorado.
"It was a jaw dropper," said Bob Broom, an Aurora City Councilman who has known Sullivan for 30 years. "He was probably the last person in the world you'd expect to be charged with something like this."
Former Republican congressman Tom Tancredo agrees Sullivan had an impressive career.
"I know I've given him awards, it was exemplary," Tancredo said. "It's two different human beings."
Sullivan's neighbors are equally stunned. "I hope it isn't true," one emotional neighbor said.
FOX31 Denver's Justin Joseph, Julie Hayden, Heidi Hemmat, and Hema Mullur contributed to this report.
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Courtesy of: Real Estate Sales & Loans