2 Denver Sheriff’s Office employees placed on leave after detainee incident

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DENVER -- Two veterans of the Denver County Sheriff's Department have been placed on leave after an incident with a detainee, a department spokesperson confirmed Wednesday.

Though the details were vague, the sheriff's office issued a press release Wednesday afternoon, saying Deputy Sheriff Thomas Ford, who has been with the department six and a half years, was placed on investigative leave with pay for "inappropriate use of force."

"The incident occurred the evening of July 13, during the book-in process of a detainee," the press release indicated. "Sheriff Gary Wilson has requested an investigation of criminal charges against the officer, which will be decided by the Denver District Attorney's Office."

Officer William Lewis, who has been with the department for 12 years, was also placed on investigative leave with pay for "writing an inaccurate reported related to the inappropriate force incident," the press release indicated.

The sheriff's office did not disclose the identity of the involved detainee in an apparent effort "to preserve the integrity of the criminal and administrative investigation," according to the press release.

FOX31 Denver reached out to the sheriff's office Wednesday afternoon, asking if there is any video of the incident. A spokesperson indicated there may be video of the incident, but that it would not be released Wednesday.

FOX31 Denver's Julie Hayden has confirmed that Ford was also involved in a 2011 videotaped incident involving excessive force used on another inmate, Jamal Hunter.

The incident led to an internal affairs investigation by the sheriff's office, the suspension of two officers and a lawsuit filed by Hunter.

Ford was apparently part of a group of five officers seen banding together in an effort to subdue Hunter, who was on the ground before three of the officers arrived in the cell.

One deputy, Edward Keller, received a 30-day suspension for his involvement in the incident, which “involved a demonstrable, serious risk to the inmate” according to the internal affairs report. Keller is also named in Hunter’s civil suit.

Ford was not disciplined for his participation in the 2011 incident, nor was he named in Hunter's lawsuit.


    • Anonymous

      That’s not all the denver and aurora police departments have been up too.
      The aurora PTSD officer decided he did not like me, so he had me put in a homeless people dungeon (I am a homeowner ) and falsified more ridiculous things about me. He also requested that the staff abuse me.
      This ‘officer’ put into the computer that I am a homeless junkie that attacks nurses at a rate of once every twenty minutes.
      I am from a nursing family ( five nurses and counting) what this ‘man’ has done is appalling. I am not homeless: I am a homeowner. Also, I am certainly not a junkie, as this ‘ officer’ falsified in his reports. He also had people at denver health falsify documents. He used his status as a police officer to order these people to falsifiy insulting files meant to interfere with my services. Mission accomplished! I can no longer get appropriate care because of the slander and liable he and his subordinate have committed. No, I was not under any charges: no crime was committed. But, because of this disgraced , dishonest officer I may have tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees to clean up his vile lies. This is unbelievable. In my opinion, the police deserve no respect until there is a complete purge and these dishonest ‘officers’ are brought to justice: also, multiple employees of denver health need to be jailed as well. I am tired of living in fear of this so called officer and the ‘staff’ of denver health. Multiple complaints are about to be issued. This officer and the staff of denver health have violated state law, violated my civil rights, and they are guilty of human rights violations (I’m not kidding: I checked for the criteria and they are in violation). Then denver health had the nerve to bill my insurance. WOW! They can not be more insidious than that.
      Aurors pd and denver health have committed great wrongs
      Including interfering with patient advocacy and other rights.

  • Andrew harkins

    And more bleeding hearts like you all always coddling criminals … This never gets old ! Why would anyone want to be a cop these days.

    • Nick

      Why would anyone want to be a cop? I’m guessing the fact that they are rewarded with a paid vacation after getting to beat peoples faces in helps. Oh and the fact that they are immune to the laws they are supposed to be enforcing and when caught the taxpayers, not them, have to pay out the settlement, and… need I go on?

      • Andrew harkins

        Hey window licker they are on suspension .. So how does that mean they have immunity … I ment cowards like you would never do it.. Just sit back and judge them

  • Anonymous

    What does a paid vacation teach these law abusing police officers? Maybe losing money will help cure their above the law mentality!!!

  • Nick

    $100 says that after their paid vacations, they are silently reinstated and go about their daily lives like nothing had ever happened after which the Denver taxpayers will pay for the excessive force settlement out of OUR pockets. Anyone want to take me up on this?

  • Andrew harkins

    Hey nick the reason there always reinstated is because after the investigation is complete and the full video showing the criminis actions is released the media doesn’t care anymore .. So why don’t you stop believing every word the flickering box says and understand there’s always two sides to every story .. I’d bet you $1,000 you have never served the public a day in your life .. Coward

  • Stymie

    Harkins must work for DPD “their” is “there” and “criminis” must be Latvian for Christmas.

  • Nita Stolns

    Hey Nickie I disagree with you. When it comes to law enforcement everyone is always happy to pick them apart. Two sides to every story, this guy was probably giving them a real hard time, I would have done the same time, one doesn’t know what happened before, you are not seeing the whole picture. No I am not a officer, just a old lady and have saw this many times. Most people don’t like the police and are quick to judge. Judge not lest ye’ be judged.

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