State leg­is­la­tor is jailed in Je≠Co

Ev­er­green’s Leonard is charged with con­tempt of court.

The Denver Post - - NEWS - By Kieran Ni­chol­son Kieran Ni­chol­son: 303-954-1822, kni­chol­son@den­ver­ or @kier­an­ni­chol­son

A Colorado State rep­re­sen­ta­tive has been jailed for con­tempt of court.

Timothy J. Leonard, R-Ev­er­green, who rep­re­sents House Dis­trict 25, was sen­tenced Fri­day to 14 days in jail for con­tempt of court, said Jenny Ful­ton, a Jef­fer­son County Sher­iff’s Of­fice spokes­woman.

The Colorado In­de­pen­dent, which first re­ported the story, said Leonard at­tempted nu­mer­ous times to in­ter­fere with his ex-wife’s de­ci­sions about the ed­u­ca­tion of their four chil­dren.

Leonard, 55, was booked into the Jef­fer­son County Jail at 2:30 p.m. Fri­day, Ful­ton said.

Leonard ap­peared in court Fri­day as part of a dis­so­lu­tion of mar­riage hear­ing. The di­vorce case was filed in June 2012.

On Sept. 13, a mo­tion for con­tempt ci­ta­tion was filed against Leonard af­ter he made ed­u­ca­tional de­ci­sions re­gard­ing one of his chil­dren.

“The mother, his ex-wife, has sole de­ci­sion mak­ing on ed­u­ca­tion” re­gard­ing the child, said Sharon Liko, Leonard’s at­tor­ney.

Leonard tried to ex­cuse the child from a stan­dard­ized test, and also tried to limit the stu­dent’s use of an iPad at school.

He be­lieved he could make “mi­nor” de­ci­sions about the child’s ed­u­ca­tion, but he was mis­taken, Liko said.

Leonard was sen­tenced to jail Fri­day by Jef­fer­son County Mag­is­trate Mar­i­anne Tims.

“This must be a very dif­fi­cult time for Rep. Leonard and his fam­ily. I know he cares deeply for his chil­dren and my thoughts and prayers are with the Leonard fam­ily,” Repub­li­can Leader Pa­trick Neville, RCas­tle Rock, said Fri­day in a state­ment.

Leonard was ap­pointed to the dis­trict seat in Jan­uary by a va­cancy com­mit­tee, to fill the po­si­tion of Jon Keyser of Mor­ri­son. Keyser, a first-term leg­is­la­tor, left the house seat to run for the U.S. Se­nate against in­cum­bent Demo­crat Michael Ben­net.

Leonard, who was elected to the seat in Novem­ber, serves on the pub­lic health care and hu­man ser­vices com­mit­tee, as well as state, veter­ans and mil­i­tary af­fairs.

House Democrats also re­acted to Leonard’s ar­rest.

“It is my duty to pro­tect the in­tegrity of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives, and it is trou­bling when a mem­ber does not up­hold the law,” said House Speaker Dickey Lee Hullinghorst, D-Boul­der.

“It is ab­surd to imag­ine Rep. Leonard tak­ing a seat on the House Ed­u­ca­tion Com­mit­tee, to which he was reap­pointed just last week by Mi­nor­ity Leader Neville, and mak­ing im­por­tant de­ci­sions for Colorado’s stu­dents, when a judge has pro­hib­ited Rep. Leonard from mak­ing ed­u­ca­tional de­ci­sions re­gard­ing his own chil­dren.”

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