TeeJaw Blog

Patrick J. Sullivan Now an Inmate at the Patrick J. Sullivan Detention Facility

Posted in Uncategorized by TeeJaw on Thursday, December 1, 2011, 3: 05 PM

I’ve been inside the Patrick J. Sullivan Detention Facility in Arapahoe County, Colorado.  It’s an impressive facility.  I wasn’t an inmate, thankfully.  I don’t have enough tattoos.  I don’t have any tattoos.

I was a guest getting a tour along with about 20 other people attending Sheriff Grayson Robinson’s Citizens’ Police Academy.  I have a very high opinion of Sheriff Robinson for several reasons, not the least of which is that he went out of his way to correct a previous error and to issue a concealed firearm permit to me after he became Sheriff in 2002.  That was back in the days when Colorado sheriffs issued such permits on a discretionary basis.  Prior to 2002 and since 1985 now criminal inmate Patrick J. Sullivan was the sheriff of Arapahoe County.  He issued permits sparingly, mainly to his political cronies.

I applied for a permit and was refused. No reason was given.  No reason could have been given.  No good reason existed.  When I had the temerity to ask what the reason might have been I was treated to a nasty letter that went quite over the top in castigating me but still gave no reason for the denial.

No matter how confident you are, no matter how much you think you are a good citizen, a letter from your local sheriff insinuating you are a bad person but citing no facts to back it up can jar you to the bone.  The current Sheriff  was Patrick J. Sullivan’s undersheriff at the time.  When Sullivan was term limited in 2002, Grayson Robinson was the natural candidate and was elected easily by the voters, including me.

Then the unexpected happened.  Sheriff Robinson approached me at the State Capitol one day in 2003 when we were both there to testify on Colorado’s proposed new law to make Colorado a  “shall-issue” CCW state.  He said he was aware that things had not gone well for me in my dealings with “the former administration.”  He said that if I would submit another application, and if everything checked out,  he would issue a permit to me.  [CCW permits were still discretionary and would be for about another year even if the new law were enacted, which it was a few months later.]

That was a wonderful breath of fresh air.  The sour memory of Patrick J. Sullivan was pretty much erased by Sheriff Robinson’s kindness.  I submitted a written application and got my CCW permit in a short time.  A deputy called me personally to tell me I could come to the office and pick it up.  That really felt good.  If I were ever to engage in any conduct that would place my permit in jeopardy I would feel that I had personally let a good man down, a sheriff who trusted me enough to go out of his way to correct a wrong done by his office before he became sheriff.

Sullivan, now 68,  was the sheriff of Arapahoe County for 18 years.  He was a law enforcement officer prior to becoming sheriff.  He spent his whole life, in fact, in law enforcement.  Now he sits in a jail named for him, suspected of providing methamphetamine to several younger men in exchange for homosexual sex.  On December 9th he will be formally charged on numerous counts, according to a public statement by Sheriff Robinson.  Sullivan’s bail has been set at $500,000.

This is hard to fathom, or understand.  It can’t be easy for Sheriff Robinson to have to arrest and incarcerate the man he used to work for and probably admired.  After all, Sullivan was once named sheriff of the year for a heroic rescue of a wounded deputy in a shoot out with several violent criminals.

As for me, I never held Patrick J. Sullivan in high regard because he exuded arrogance.  There was never much real evidence of any dirt on him, but rumors abounded.  I would not have been surprised to hear he was involved in something nefarious, something of the white-collar variety.  But this…this is beyond the pale.  It’s too low-down and cheap.  Illegal drugs and male prostitutes?  Aiding and abetting the violation of drug and other laws? Well, I guess he’s finally among his own kind.  Maybe he’ll get a tattoo.

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2 Responses

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  1. David said, on Friday, December 2, 2011, 2: 36 PM at 2:36 PM

    Hey there TEEJAW, I happen to have a couple of tattoos yet have never been arrested for anything. As a matter of fact I am an upstanding citizen and am employed (13 years) as an assistant chief at our local fire department. It is my opinion that you’re references to tattoos or possibly the people who choose to have permanent skin art applied to their bodies; is a bigoted assumption and leaves you little room to refer to another as someone who exudes arrogance. You are absolutely correct in your opinion regarding someone who held the public trust such as in this instance but please, do not judge all books by their covers…especially those with the highly decorated covers. Thank you for your time

    • TeeJaw said, on Saturday, December 3, 2011, 6: 53 AM at 6:53 AM

      I should have known I’d rankle a few people with my reference to tattoos and the implied association between tattoos and criminal behavior. I do understand that not everyone with tattoos is a criminal. Criminals tats are in a separate category. I should have been clear on that, so I concede your point. Anyone who runs into a burning building to save one of his fellow citizens is certainly not someone I wanted to offend, and I hope you know none was intended.


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