Beeson plans transition after historic recall
Martin Beeson, who quit District Attorney Colleen Truden’s office in disgust over how she had treated two attorneys earlier this year, is now making plans for his transition into the office.A recall organizer said Beeson shouldn’t expect much assistance in those efforts from the lame-duck district attorney, whom voters recalled Tuesday.”I don’t think she’ll help with the transition at all,” said Sherry Caloia, a Glenwood Springs defense attorney. “It’s hard to lose an election, I’ll give her that. But I don’t think she’s going to take this one easily.”She added that even if Truden is recalcitrant, the transition may not be problematic.”I’m pretty sure Martin is going to keep the same [administrative] staff, not the same attorneys, and he’s going to bring back a lot of people who left,” Caloia said.She named former deputy district attorneys Gail Nichols, Tony Hershey and Chris Gaddis as lawyers who may be offered their jobs back. But Beeson did not want to confirm anyone had received a job offer, saying he wanted to be sensitive to prosecutors currently with the district.”They deserve the respect of me talking with them directly,” he said.An announcement about his staff may come next week. He said “it’s safe to assume” there will be some new prosecutors.Beeson also said he was hopeful Truden would cooperate in making the switch as seamless as possible.”I’ve not heard from her yet. I did place a call to her just a few minutes ago,” he said. Neither Truden nor her No. 2 prosecutor returned calls to The Aspen Times on Wednesday.Beeson said he congratulated Truden on a well-run campaign. He also made a suggestion.”I asked her [that] for these last few weeks that she’s in office to run the office as if there had been no election, as if it was just business as usual, in the belief that that would go toward effectuating a smooth and professional transition,” he said. “And I asked her to call me so we can set up a meeting very soon so we can sit down and talk about some issues.”After a few hours of sleep, Beeson said he spent Wednesday meeting with friends and people he hopes will join his office.”There were a lot of ideas discussed, a lot of names discussed, not just in personnel, but people to contact statewide to help us out in this transition,” he said.Beeson received several phone calls of congratulations from district attorneys around the state, as well as officials from the Colorado District Attorneys’ Council.”There are a lot of good people extending a helping hand, and I’m going to take advantage,” he said.Truden was elected to office with 2,515 votes. The district attorney was removed from office by 2.5 times as many voters Tuesday.The shock of how badly she lost her job continued to reverberate a day after 80 percent of those who went to the polls in the 9th Judicial District said they wanted her out.”There has never been an election like this in Pitkin that I can think of,” said County Commissioner Mick Ireland, a vocal critic of Truden. “Up in my neighborhood, where [the margin] was 211-3, many of us are wondering, who are those three voters, are they new to town or just against recalls or maybe they reacted by just saying no to Ms. Truden without further thought.”Chad Abraham’s e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
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