Hautzinger’s office helped victims in Serra probe

The state attorney general’s office received assistance from Mesa County prosecutors in the early stages of the criminal case against Montrose’s former top prosecutor.

At the request of First Assistant Attorney General Robert Shapiro, the 21st Judicial District Attorney’s Office of Mesa County provided victim-advocate services to three women in the investigation of former 7th Judicial District Attorney Myrl Serra, according to Mesa County District Attorney Pete Hautzinger.

Shapiro is the lead prosecutor in the case against Serra, who is accused of multiple counts of sexual and official misconduct against his former staff members.

“Because of the nature of the alleged crimes, it was the appropriate decision to have victim-advocacy services handled by advocates unaffiliated with the 7th Judicial District,” state attorney general’s office spokesman Mike Saccone said.

Victim advocates answer questions for crime victims and offer referrals for a variety of needs, including medical services and counseling, among other responsibilities.

Saccone said the attorney general’s office is now providing the same victims services offered earlier by Mesa County.

Serra, 48, was arrested by Colorado Bureau of Investigation agents Sept. 30 and faces charges including unlawful sexual contact by use of force, criminal extortion, misdemeanor unlawful sexual contact, indecent exposure and official misconduct. Mesa County Chief Judge David Bottger is presiding over the case.

Serra resigned Jan. 11.


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