Former Rep. Galindo Cited For Providing Alcohol To 19-Year-Old, Police End Investigation

<p>Esteban L. Hernandez/Denverite</p>
<p>State Rep. Rochelle Galindo of Greeley speaks during a rally for Latino/a Advocacy Day on Monday, March 11, 2019, in Denver.</p>
Photo: COLEG 2019 Latino/a Advocacy Day | Rep. Rochelle Galindo - EHernandez
State Rep. Rochelle Galindo of Greeley speaks during a rally for Latino/a Advocacy Day on Monday, March 11, 2019, in Denver.

Former Democratic Rep. Rochelle Galindo has been cited with providing alcohol to a person under the age of 21. According to documents from the Greeley Police Department, she “bought alcohol, including wine and beer, that was given to an underage female.”

However police are not moving forward with a more serious allegation. According to the police report, they received a tip with a message that read: “This is strictly unverified information at this point, and I don’t want my name to get out as your source, but I heard more than once that [Galindo] has sexually assaulted several young girls on [her] campaign after giving them alcohol, specifically a girl named [Redacted]. Can you hire an investigator?”

Police then interviewed the woman who had worked on Galindo’s campaign who told police she had a brief sexual relationship with Galindo last fall and felt she was “being taken advantage of” by Galindo.

In the redacted police report, the woman said at first she was “enthralled” that Galindo liked her in that way. She says that during evening phone banks to call donors, Galindo began to invite her out for short breaks and “one-on-one time” and “was always drinking alcohol during call time and provided alcohol to others as well.”

During the sexual interactions, Galindo made jokes comparing the woman to “Monica Lewinsky,” the former intern told investigators.

The accuser "described having sex three or four times, but only remembered two of the instances." She told investigators she "blacked out and didn’t remember the details of the other sexual episodes." One sexual encounter allegedly happened in the bathroom at a Bernie Sanders rally.

In the report, investigators said the woman told them she felt she “was too drunk to consent most of the time, based on the fact that [she] does not remember initiating the sex.” She also said she felt very conflicted about everything given that this was her boss at the time.

However, after telling police her story, the accuser decided she did not want to continue any type of criminal investigation and the case was closed.

Galindo did not respond to a request for comment but in an earlier statement denied any allegations made against her. Galindo was elected last November. Before stepping down on May 12, she was facing a recall effort from Republicans for her “yes” votes on Senate Bill 19-181, which overhauls oil and gas regulations, the “red flag” gun law and other Democratic bills.

“The allegations against me are false,” Galindo said in a statement released the day she resigned from office. “That said, they will make our fight against the pending recall effort untenable. I will not put my constituents through what will surely be a recall campaign based on political smear tactics and false allegations.”

Sherrie Peif, a reporter for Complete Colorado, a website that is owned by the conservative Independence Institute, received the original tip about Galindo possibly sexually assaulting “young girls.” She told Colorado Public Radio she was chasing the story, and forwarded that tip to a personal friend, who took it to the Greeley Police Department.

“I have not had any contact with the police. I did not take the tip to the police, I was not a witness,” Peif said.

The police report lists her as a witness, and also lists the name of “Amy Cook” also with the Independence Institute.

Greeley Police Chief Mark Jones confirms to CPR that they weren’t involved.

“I can tell you absolutely neither Sherrie nor Amy Oliver Cooke had anything to do with reporting this to the police and have not been contacted,” Jones said.