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DANIEL J. CHACON

A former Denver sheriff's deputy who was fired after he got caught in a prostitution sting said he appealed his dismissal because other deputies have done "way worse" and kept their jobs.
Eric Griffith, 38, cited some of the recent cases of alleged deputy misconduct as outlined in the Independent Monitor's annual report, including the 45-day suspension of a deputy who slapped another deputy on the buttocks.
"According to what I was told from the day I got hired, the city says zero tolerance on violence in the workplace. This officer got a 45-day suspension for assaulting another officer," Griffith said Wednesday.
Griffith gave other examples of deputies getting into trouble but not losing their jobs. However, those allegations could not be independently verified.
"I didn't think that what I did was as bad as what other people have done, and they've kept their jobs," he said.
But Griffith holds no grudges, saying he's accepted responsibility for a "stupid mistake" and moved on with his life.
According to Griffith, an innocent drive on the night of Oct. 11, 2007, resulted in his firing.
When he got home about 5 p.m., his mother, who has since died, called to say she had pneumonia. About an hour later, Griffith said his wife called to say that her father's open-heart surgery had been postponed because he had a serious infection in his legs.
"I was just under a bunch of stress, and I had to get out of the house that night," he said.
While driving on West Colfax Avenue, Griffith said he saw a woman getting into a van and decided to follow "for the heck of it."
When he turned, he didn't see the woman or the van, so he decided to get back on Colfax. As he waited at a stop sign, he said the woman, who turned out to be a police officer posing as a prostitute, walked up to him.
Griffith said the woman "rambled off a list of sex acts" and that he jokingly offered her $20. Griffith said he didn't have any cash and that he was being a smart aleck when he made the offer.
"I had no need and no intention for sex," Griffith said.

Story From: Rocky Mountain News
 

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Riiiight, I believe him. He should get his job back so everyone he's trying to throw under the bus can properly congratulate him.
 
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