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Colorado GOP Senate Candidate Faces Questions About 1983 Assault Complaint

Documents contradict Darryl Glenn's assertions that it wasn't him

Colorado Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Darryl Glenn spoke on the first night of the Republican National Convention last week in what was a high point in his career. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Colorado Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Darryl Glenn spoke on the first night of the Republican National Convention last week in what was a high point in his career. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Republican Colorado Senate candidate who spoke on the opening night of the GOP convention last week faced a precipitous career fall Tuesday, when a local newspaper raised questions about his previous denials of a 1983 assault complaint.  

Darryl Glenn, a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel who has campaigned on his integrity, has repeatedly asserted that he has no knowledge of the alleged incident, but this week The Denver Post obtained court documents and a police report with his name on it, the newspaper reported. When confronted with the documents, Glenn’s campaign spokeswoman doubled down.  

“Darryl has never been arrested, never even been questioned by the police, and doesn’t know what actually happened,” spokeswoman Katey Price said in an email to the newspaper Monday. “There’s nothing inconsistent because in both instances, he was speculating on what might have happened.”

Glenn is challenging Democratic incumbent Michael Bennet, who at one time was considered vulnerable and offered Republicans an opportunity to flip a Senate seat in a year when Democrats are trying to take control of the chamber. But Glenn emerged as the Republican candidate only after a tumultuous primary season that included allegations of blackmail and resignations by party officials.
The race is now rated by Democrat Favored by The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report/Roll Call.

Glenn’s father, Ernest Glenn, filed the complaint, alleging that the younger man had struck him in the face. At the time, Glenn was a senior in high school and had just turned 18. He was later named a national collegiate powerlifting champion at the Air Force Academy. A handwriting expert reviewed a signature on the complaint, at the newspaper’s behest, and concluded it matched the one on Glenn’s campaign materials.  

Court documents obtained by the newspaper show that Glenn appeared in court to be advised of the charge three weeks later. The charge was dropped two months after that, when Ernest Glenn opted not to pursue it, the newspaper reported. Ernest Glenn reportedly died in 2006.  

Glenn told The Denver Post in May that he had never been interviewed by police for any reason. He reportedly said the charge might have involved another man named Darryl Glenn and that he sometimes gets phone calls about that person. He told the Colorado Springs Independent in July that the incident might have involved his half brother, Cedric, who committed suicide in 1992.


Eric Sondermann, an independent political analyst, told the Post that Glenn’s reaction was ” a classic example of the cover-up being worse than the offense.”  

“No reasonable voter would judge someone based on what happened in 1983, before that person was even a young man,” Sonderman said. “We all did things we wish we hadn’t. … But while voters might not judge him based on what happened in 1983, they can judge how he handles it now — does he own up to it, does he take responsibility, or does he duck, dodge and weave?”  

At the Cleveland convention last week, Glenn, an African American, spoke as an expert on national security and also referenced the Black Lives Matter protest movement against police shootings.  

“‘Someone with a nice tan needs to say this,” Glenn said during his speech. “All lives matter.”  

The remark, and other lines that fell flat during the address, earned Glenn the distinction of being declared one of the night’s “losers” by Chris Cillizza of The Washington Post.

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