Wright takes aim at Fruita PD chief Angelo
Calling his old boss, Fruita Police Chief Mark Angelo, a “vindictive little bureaucrat,” former Fruita police officer and House District 54 candidate Jared Wright said today that findings of dishonesty during a police internal investigation headed by Angelo were “outrageous, groundless and politically motivated.”
“This is about being 17 minutes late for work … yet Chief Mark Angelo wants to make this into the second hunt for John Dillinger,” Wright told a crowd of supporters today during a press conference at the Mesa County Republican party’s headquarters at 1114 N. First St.
Wright, who resigned from the department July 13, said an internal investigation focused on him centered on him being late for work 17 minutes on June 14, his accounting of a 45-minute time period that morning and being insubordinate with a supervisor. Wright said the insubordination claim was proven unfounded. Wright acknowledged being “a few minutes” late for work on June 8, which he admitted to superiors, in addition to being late “2-3 other times” over previous months.
Wright said the investigation found dishonestly with respect to his account of a 45-minute timeframe on June 14, when Wright said he went to the Mesa County Justice Center to testify in a criminal case.
“This is simply an outrageous, groundless and baseless claim,” Wright said. “Rather than providing me an opportunity to clear up what may have been a misunderstanding caused by not having a perfect photographic memory of times that morning, Police Chief Mark Angelo hastily sent a Brady letter to the District Attorney, without asking me any follow-up questions or providing me with any due process or an opportunity to respond.”
Angelo couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.
The city of Fruita has yet to release the findings of the police department’s internal affairs investigation. Wright today told reporters he couldn’t release the internal investigation file, explaining Angelo “made me” sign a confidentiality agreement prohibiting release of the file to parties other than his attorney. Wright said he didn’t actually see written copies of the internal affairs findings until July 23, and only after he signed the confidentiality agreement.
Read the full story in Tuesday’s Daily Sentinel.