ARVADA, Colo. (KDVR) — The Aurora police officer who is now facing assault charges for strangling a suspect has previously been in jail himself.
The Problem Solvers obtained an Arvada Police Report and Jefferson County court records that show John Haubert pleaded guilty to unlawfully possessing a firearm while under the influence of alcohol, a misdemeanor, in 2009.
His roommates accused him of pointing a shotgun at one of them while he was drunk.
Haubert, who according to a court record worked construction at the time, was initially charged with a felony menacing charge. However, the felony charge was eventually dismissed.
In the Arvada police reports, Haubert’s roommates told investigators that they had planned to “go out for the evening” with Haubert, but Haubert arrived late and appeared to be “extremely intoxicated.”
One roommate told police he and Haubert had a mutual friend who had been killed by a drunk driver. The roommate admitted that “he became upset because Mr. Haubert was intoxicated,” and that the roommate punched a hole in the wall.
Haubert responded to the argument by retreating to his bedroom, according to the police report. When a different roommate went to check on Haubert, he told police that, “Haubert pointed a shotgun in this direction, with the mussel (sic) of the weapon close to his face.”
The FOX31 Problem Solvers attempted to reach Haubert through the police department, through the police union, and through his attorney, but we have not yet reached him for a comment.
Vanessa Wilson, the Aurora police chief, said she was unaware of his previous charges until this most use of force investigation for which he is facing assault charges.
“I was made aware of that (2009) charge yesterday morning, through my Major Crimes Unit,” Wilson said. “I need to make it clear that I have no control over any basic applicant that his hired by the City of Aurora. We only control the lateral process.”
The Aurora Civil Service Commission makes hiring decisions for the police department’s basic recruits, according to Crystal McCoy, a public information officer for the Aurora Police Department.
The Problem Solvers asked the Aurora Civil Service Commission to explain how Haubert was allowed to be hired despite the misdemeanor in his history.
“None of the current Commissioners on the Civil Service Commission were involved in authorizing the hire of Officer Haubert in 2018. However, it is worth noting that all officers in the State of Colorado must become POST certified. POST is short for Peace Officers Standards and Training. Colorado POST reviews the criminal background of all officers applying to be POST certified and this officer passed that review. Since the Civil Service Commission by Aurora City Charter is part of the disciplinary appeal process for Officer Haubert, the Commission believes it is improper to make any comment at this time,” the commission said in a statement.
“I did review the background myself,” said Wilson. “The decision was made to offer him a position with the City of Aurora, but I did not know about that (charge) until yesterday morning.”
Because the charges stemming from the July 23 use of force arrest include at least one felony, Haubert is on unpaid administrative leave.
Meanwhile, the officer who is facing charges for failing to intervene and report use of force during the July 2021 incident, Francine Martinez, previously received a Life Saving Award for administering Narcan to an overdose victim in 2017.
She is the first officer the APD has publicly accused of violating its new duty to intervene policy.
Martinez is on paid administrative leave because this charge is a misdemeanor.