Grabe formally advised of charges of first-degree murder

ALLEN GRABE SITS WITH his attorney, William McNutty, during a hearing that formally advised Grabe of the charges he faces in connection with the shooting death of his 13-year-old son, Jacob. District Attorney Pete Hautzinger stands in the background. To see more photos from the hearing, view a slide show at

Allen Grabe shot his 13-year-old son repeatedly while the boy was sleeping, telling his wife, “I had to kill him because you were ruining him,” according to an arrest affidavit unsealed by a judge Wednesday morning.

Before the report was unsealed, Grabe, 51, appeared in court in a red jail suit with his wrists and ankles shackled, and was formally advised of charges of first-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Jacob Allen Grabe.

The boy, who had a neurobiological disorder similar to autism called Asperger’s syndrome, was an eighth-grader at Grand Mesa Middle School.

His father, who is in custody at the Mesa County Jail on a $1 million bond, will appear next in court Nov. 28 for a preliminary hearing.

On the night of Sept. 11, emergency dispatch received a frantic 911 call from Grabe’s wife, Jacquette Grabe, that saying her husband had shot their son. Jacquette Grabe called the emergency number from inside a locked closet, the affidavit said.

Investigators arrived at the home at 3045 Wedgewood Ave. to find Allen Grabe sitting on the front steps clutching a handgun, the affidavit said. After an officer ordered Grabe to drop the weapon, the Pear Park father set the weapon on the steps and said, “I give up,” the affidavit said.

Minutes earlier, the affidavit said, Jacquette Grabe saw her husband go into the room where their son was sleeping and heard multiple gunshots. The woman saw her husband emerge from the room with a gun in his hand and he yelled at her, “I had to kill him because you were ruining him,” the affidavit said.

Jacquette Grabe said she then heard gurgling noises coming from her son’s bedroom; her husband then went back into the bedroom, and again, Jacquette Grabe heard multiple gunshots, the affidavit said.

When she went into the room, the boy appeared to be seriously injured and did not appear to be alive, the affidavit said.

According to the affidavit: “Mrs. Grabe advised she has no idea why Mr. Grabe shot their son Jacob. Mrs. Grabe did disclose several financial stressors which came into Mr. Grabe’s life within the last week, but advised Mr. Grabe has never been physically or emotionally abusive to either her or Jacob.”

Investigators said they observed possible blood spatter on Allen Grabe’s glasses and on his T-shirt, and police covered his hands with bags as he was arrested to preserve any possible evidence of the shooting.

Investigators also interviewed Jacquette Grabe’s friend, Debra Meeks, because she was speaking with Jacquette on the phone at the time of the shooting.

Meeks told police she heard some popping noises and heard Allen Grabe’s voice “clearly state, ‘I shot him,’” the affidavit said.

The affidavit said: “Ms. Meeks said Mrs. Grabe then appeared to become highly upset and she heard Mrs. Grabe say, ‘No, I love him.’ Ms. Meeks said she then heard two more ‘pop’ sounds and then the phone went dead.”

Meeks said she called Jacquette Grabe back “because she did not know what was happening” and Mrs. Grabe said “that Mr. Grabe had shot Jacob and had told her, ‘You’re ruining him so I shot him,’” the affidavit said.

Jacquette Grabe confided in Meeks that the couple was having financial problems in the past two weeks, the affidavit said.


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