Adams County District Attorney says the Federal Heights Police Department's lack of investigation into serious felony cases is "Utterly alarming." An email obtained by CBS Colorado, sent in Oct. 31 from 17th Judicial District Attorney Brian Mason sent to the current interim chief of the Federal Heights Police Department, details the seriousness of the backlog previously uncovered by CBS News Colorado.
The email details issues with lack of investigation into felony crimes and "lack of follow up with victims of serious crimes including sex assaults, sexual assaults on children and other violent crimes."
The, "The interim police chief requested this because of concerns related to his department's backlog of serious felony cases."
Mason's email goes on to reveal concerns within the department about record keeping, staffing and personnel management, "Based on our review it is clear to me that the Federal Heights Police Department is woefully understaffed." The district attorney went on to write that he now "has serious concerns about community safety in the city of Federal Heights."
That interim chief, Mike Domenighini, was reportedly demoted and recently resigned from the Federal Heights Police Department, although it's unclear if any of those moves are related to the case backlog.
Contacted by CBS News Colorado, Domenighini declined to comment.
The district attorney's office said it found failures to investigate cases dating to 2020, 2021, and 2022.
Mason ends his email by stating, "In many ways based on this report I do not have confidence that FHPD Can properly investigate a serious felony case at this time."
The Federal Heights city manager says she was made aware of an issue within their investigations department a year prior to the district attorney being asked to step in but says it was her understanding that action was being taken to address it at that time.
The district attorney has declined to comment on their review at this time, but Mason said he referred his findings to the Attorney General's Office for further investigation. The Colorado Attorney General's office has not responded to inquiries from CBS News Colorado.
CBS News Colorado reached out to the current interim chief of the Federal Heights Police Department, as well as the city's mayor for comment and have not heard back.
This is a developing story and will be updated as new information is uncovered.
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