Aspen inmate Jan Hamilton accuses judge of attempted murder
June 2, 2015
An elderly inmate in Pitkin County Jail has filed a federal suit against an Aspen-area judge on allegations of attempted second-degree murder.
Jan Hamilton's complaint, recorded Tuesday in the U.S. District Court of Denver, is the Texas transplant's latest salvo that centers around her sexual orientation, age, purported battle with cancer and a host of other issues.
Less clear is how far Hamilton's complaint against 9th Judicial District Judge James Boyd goes. On Friday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Gordon P. Gallagher issued an order giving Hamilton 30 days to cure deficiencies in her complaint. In other words, Hamilton must complete her lawsuit on a court-approved prisoner-complaint form and include other required paperwork, the order says. If she doesn't meet the deadline, the complaint will be dismissed, the order says.
Hamilton, 73, is serving a 64-month sentence in Pitkin County Jail on convictions connected to harassment, stalking and trespassing. Her federal suit accuses Boyd of exercising bias and prejudice in the various rulings he has made concerning her "false arrests and false imprisonment with malicious prosecution" dating back to 2005.
“She’s accusatory and makes all kinds of accusations, and just like on the outside, none of them are substantiated.”
— Don Bird, Pitkin County’s head jailer
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Boyd sentenced Hamilton to jail in March, finding her in violation of a previous plea agreement related to her stalking-related convictions.
"With regard to the murder charges against Judge James B. Boyd, (Hamilton) deems his ruling to contribute to her pending death from cancer," says her suit, also arguing that "multiple conspirator/perpetrators have contributed to her pending death due to untreated cancers."
Boyd is the only defendant in the suit, but Hamilton's complaint drops the names of various public officials, police officers, religious leaders, physicians and other judges. The complaint suggests they all have conspired to incarcerate her because of her sexual orientation.
The complaint also says court rulings have not gone in her favor because of "bias, prejudice and homophobia in opposition to her lesbian lifestyle."
Additionally, Pitkin County Jail has refused to allowed her to undergo treatments for her cancer, the complaint alleges.
The head jailer, Don Bird, said Monday that Hamilton's suit is nothing new.
"We are taking care of her medical needs," Bird said, declining to elaborate about Hamilton's condition.
Hamilton has been a source of consternation for local bureaucrats, including those in the Pitkin County Courthouse. In 2011 alone, she was involved in at least 20 civil disputes, ranging from restraining orders to multi-million-dollar lawsuits against her former friends and one ex-lover. That year, the court had to set up specific times of the days for Hamilton to file her complaints because of the staff time involved. She has been banned from local churches and was evicted from the Aspen Country Inn senior-housing complex.
Bird said Hamilton behaves similarly in the jail as she did when she was a free woman.
"She's like she was on the outside," he said. "She's accusatory and makes all kinds of accusations, and just like on the outside, none of them are substantiated."
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