Former Pitkin County sheriff’s official arrested for felony assault
The former director of operations at the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office was charged with felony assault last week in Blue Lake after a dispute over an unleashed dog, according to a police report.
Tom Grady, 67, allegedly broke the jaw of the man with the unleashed dog, knocked him unconscious and caused him to receive several stitches above his eye, according to an Eagle County Sheriff’s Office report. Grady said the man and his dog acted aggressively, though the alleged victim denied that and said Grady sucker-punched him when he leaned down to leash his dog.
“(Grady) made the comment multiple times that he was a retired Pitkin County deputy and he knew what aggressive was,” according to the police report, which notes that Grady is 6-feet-6-inches tall and weighs 240 pounds. “He wasn’t going to let a guy come at him first.”
The alleged victim, David Clancy, 63, said he never came at Grady or acted aggressively.
“Why would I move aggressively toward a guy that’s got 50 pounds on me?” Clancy said in a phone interview Thursday. “It’s interesting he says he knows aggressive behavior when he was the one acting aggressively.”
Efforts to reach Grady on Thursday were not successful.
Grady told an Eagle County sheriff’s deputy that he and his wife were walking their small dog about 7:25 p.m. on Aug. 22 when they saw a man on a bike with two dogs off-leash, according to the report. Grady and his wife wanted to avoid the dogs, so they decided to cross the street.
However, midway across the street, one of Clancy’s dogs “came after his dog,” according to the Sheriff’s Office report.
“He yelled to David, ‘Put your dogs on a leash, a–hole,’” the report states. “Thomas then said David got off his bike aggressively, kicking the kick stand and was coming after him. Thomas stated David had his hands up but not as if he were going to hit him.
“Thomas said he then punched David with his right closed fist.”
Clancy said his golden retriever, Daisy, who trotted up to the couple is very friendly and a registered therapy dog.
“I said, ‘Jeez, who is this guy?’” Clancy said. “I said, ‘I don’t see why you have to call me names.’”
He said he got off his bike and was calling Daisy to put her on a leash when Grady again called him an a–hole and told him he had to have his dog on a leash.
“I said, ‘Again with the names,’” Clancy said. “(Daisy) was coming over and I bent down to put the leash on the dog and that’s the last thing I remember.
“I woke up in a pool of blood.”
He said Grady “blindsided” him and knocked him out cold. He said he doesn’t know how long he was out, but woke up to two women standing over him telling him to “stay down.”
“They were saying to (Grady), ‘What did you do that for?’” Clancy said.
One of the two women told Eagle County deputies she’d been sitting and talking to her friend at a nearby picnic table when she heard loud screaming and began paying attention to Clancy and Grady, the police report states.
“(The witness) said she then saw Thomas punch David and knock him to the ground,” according to the report. “She then ran over to David and saw he was bleeding above his right eye.
“I asked if David ever made any threatening gestures or movements toward Thomas. She said no and (that) David was standing by his bike.”
A doctor at Valley View Hospital later determined that Clancy’s injuries constituted serious bodily injury, the report states. Serious bodily injury is the basis for charging felony assault.
Pitkin County Sheriff Joe DiSalvo said Thursday that Grady was both operations director and emergency management director for the Sheriff’s Office and retired about four years ago.
“He’s a great guy,” DiSalvo said. “He was very dedicated to this community.”
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