Ex-Palisade cop convicted of child abuse

Former Palisade police officer Patrick Lee Casey was found guilty Wednesday by a jury of 27 counts of child abuse.

Casey, 51, could be sentenced to 90 years to life in prison when he returns to court June 5.

The case was given to the jury for deliberation late Tuesday. By 10 a.m. Wednesday the jury had reached its conclusion.

After Casey’s conviction, in Judge Valerie Robison’s courtroom, his wife sat in the hallway, sobbing.

Casey was convicted of molesting two foster children that were living in his home. The two girls, who were ages 3 and 4 when the abuse started, were repeatedly abused from 1997 to 2008.

Only after the girls were away from Casey did they begin speaking about the abuse they were subjected to in the Casey household, Palisade Police Chief Carroll Quarles said.

Quarles was hired as chief of the Palisade Police Department in 1995. Casey started working part-time for the department in 1988 and went full-time with the department in 1994.

Quarles said he first learned of the allegations against Casey in January 2008.

“It is very disturbing to me,” Quarles said. “I think that everything that I have been taught and trained for over the years in terms of child abuse and sex assault have come true here, because they always say it is those you least expect. And I would have never have suspected this man of being involved in anything like that.”

While one of the girls contacted the Fruita police, the other contacted the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department, which took the lead in the investigation.

Jeremy Savage, an assistant district attorney with the Mesa County District Attorney’s Office, said he was satisfied with the verdict.

“We are very pleased with the outcome of this,” Savage said. “We believe justice was served on this case.”


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