Sheriff Terry Maketa Joins Anthony Weiner Hall of Shame


One of the leading voices among Colorado's elected county sheriffs in the backlash against gun safety legislation passed in 2013 was El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa. You can see Maketa on the cover of the August 2013 issue of NRA Magazine (above), front and center in the gray shirt. More than just a vocal opponent, Maketa went as far as accusing Democratic legislators of threatening the sheriffs with fiscal retaliation for opposing the bills–allegations which collapsed very quickly, but not fast enough to prevent them becoming part of the vast apocryphal body of misinformation about gun control in Colorado.

In recent months, however, Maketa's record as El Paso County sheriff has come under intense scrutiny as longstanding allegations of fiscal impropriety and inappropriate relationships with subordinate employees have resurfaced–this time with the evidence needed to substantiate them. And today, after a thorough investigation and lots of lead-up stories hinting at major turmoil in Sheriff Maketa's office, the Colorado Springs Gazette gives us a new image of Maketa–perhaps the one for which he will go down in local history.

That is, the naked one.


El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa is embroiled in accusations of sex with subordinates, abusive treatment of employees and dismantling oversight of the office budget that could stain his 12-year career and sink future prospects for one of the most powerful local Republicans.

Maketa allegedly has had sexual relationships with three female subordinates for years, traveling with them using public funds, promoting them to top jobs despite objections from commanders and threatening anyone he suspected of mentioning the relationships, according to interviews and documents obtained by The Gazette.

The allegations come from a seven-page complaint by three of his commanders that rebukes Maketa's term in office, accusing him of repeated sexual impropriety, discrimination, creating a hostile work environment, violating the civil rights of those who work in the Sheriff's Office, using intimidation to keep people quiet about his misdeeds and removing almost all oversight of the $60 million Sheriff's Office annual budget.

The painstaking detail of the Gazette's report on Maketa today is a must-read, though readers at work should be aware it does get a little PG-13 at times. People are certainly entitled to hook up, but the allegations of long-term favoritism, fiscal secrecy, and open bullying of subordinates to protect both Maketa and his alleged affairs are morally (and perhaps legally) career-ending. Though term-limited as El Paso County Sheriff, Maketa has been a frequent mention for higher elected office of all kinds–maybe even Rep. Doug Lamborn's replacement in Congress.

You're going to hear less of that now.

48 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Sunmusing says:

    typical gop/bagger…struggling with the power of the office…corruption at its best…

  2. From what I've heard, Maketa's picture doesn't rise to the level of Weiner's self-portraits.

  3. Davie says:

    Wait, wait, wait… Are you saying that we don't want to encourage narcissistic, megalomaniacal gun-nut Republicans to run for higher office? 

    And deprive God's gift to women a platform from which to abuse the powers voters give him?

    This diary is outrageous and should be removed immediately!

  4. Andrew Carnegie says:

    Weiner was sending pictures to underaged girls who visited Congress. He set the bar rather high for sleaze and fortunately is no longer in public office.  I don't get "selfies", but unless there is more to the story it is not in Weiner's league.

  5. Denver Yankee says:

    I seem to remember that Maketa was in Denver attending a meeting re: the sherriffs' lawsuit against the new gun safety laws (not an official function) when the Black Forest fire erupted and that was one reason for the catastrophic delayed response.  But I haven't heard anything about that since.

    • Progressicat says:

      The only thing I remember was an allegation from the fire board's review that a crew was retasked into a high danger area to protect a Sheriff Commander's home.

    • FrankUnderwood says:

      Nero fiddling while the Black Forest burned…..

      • Gray in Mountains says:

        apparently, while on a trip to Vegas with one of his preferred subordinates he learned of the death of Tom Clements. He took his time returning to the Springs from that adventuire as well.

        Maketa's pecadilloes have been known and written about in the Indy for a number of years. But, he is an R and that is the most important qualification in El Paso county

  6. MichaelBowman says:

    I'll be anxiously awaiting a press release from our local Sheriff (Yuma County), given 1) he felt compelled to make a statement on the Cliven Bundy situation, and 2) he is standing behind Maketa on the magazine cover.

  7. gaf says:

    Alas, Maketa is my Republican sheriff. But give him this–he sure knows how to get himself front and center in pictures!

    • exlurker19 says:

      My erstwhile sheriff is in and out of a jail formerly named for him.  Top that one, Maketa!

      • gaf says:

        The accuations, if proven, could qualify Maketa for jail time. Not likely to happen, though. I mean, drug charges can get even someone with clout put away. Mere intimidation, abuse of authority, sexual harrassment, financial malfeasance–not as likely to get a big name politicial sent away. Justice is not reallly blind…

        • Davie says:

          Should charges be leveled against Maketa, guess who gets to arrest him?  According to the news — the County Coroner!  Would he get his perp ride on a gurney?

  8. hapkido2nddegree says:

    Weiner was a Dem… but this isn't a Dem or GOP issue.  It is an issue where someone's "terry" got too big for his britches.  Living in COS I thought at first Maketa was ok.  If you disagreed with him… whatever.  But now it comes out anyone who crossed his wake was either propositioned, demoted, or put under so much pressure that it was sheer hell to work there.  And as the Colorado Independent reported back in 2010 these things were all going on… but people ignored it.  NOW the Gazette has 500 emails, interviews, blah, blah blah.  The Commissioners are going to "investigate."  RIGHT!  You can bet Maketa is burning up the phone minutes calling anyone who might testify and ready to shovel THEIR human excrement into the public rotary oscillator if they do so.  Man, oh man, can you imagine the law-suits that are going to be the result of this????  Criminals busted by the Sheriff's department are going to have a field day- they will say, whether true or not, that they were wrongly imprisoned because investigations were NOT done properly due to Maketa's pressuring other deputies and/or officials.  Won't make any difference if it is true- it's going to cost tax-payers big bucks. 

  9. mamajama55 says:

    May I just say: Ewwww. Not too many things less appealing than a hypocritical right wing gunhead who thinks he's hot.

  10. Davie says:

    This morning's Denver Post's digital edition had a pretty good article with a lot more detail.  I believe the final straw for the Commanders' filing a compliant this month was due to Maketa's strongarm self-nomination for the Hero award.

    Maketa probably wanted the award to be his "legacy" as Sheriff  as a stepping stone to higher office.

    The Post article even quoted one of the CSprings commissioners as saying Maketa's affairs were "the worst-kept secret" in town.  There are hundreds of emails and text messages on the county's email servers as evidence of his affair(s) dating back at least 6 years.

    Here is the latest (greatly abbreviated, unfortunately) article from their website with pictures of his "harem":

  11. FrankUnderwood says:

    Sheriff Maketa and former Sheriff Sullivan's latest batches of publicity got me thinking about Tracy Baker, the former Arapahoe County Clerk.  Anyone know what ever became of him?  Did he end up marrying his assistant clerk-paramour?

  12. Half Glass Full says:

    Yeah, a picture is worth a thousand words. But the real story is how bad it must have gotten in Maketa's office for no less than three police commanders to sign a letter demanding investigations. A letter like that is potentially career-ending for all three of them even if the investigations bear fruit and Maketa is forced to resign.

    (Apparently he can't be fired. I suppose he could be impeached? There must be some procedure to remove him even though he's elected.)

    In any event, he is done with elected office.

    Let's hope his unqualified paramours find other lines of employment as well. Maybe they can join him in a reality show. "Terry's Angels."

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