GREELEY, Colo. — The former mayor of Severance has been arrested and charged with patronizing a prostituted child.
The charge stems from an incident on April 5 when Greeley police officers were dispatched to a report of a disturbance in a parking lot by the fire station at Monfort Park. An anonymous caller reported that a teenage boy was being dragged into a white van and may be held hostage, according to an arrest affidavit.
Officers responded at 10:35 a.m. and found the van, which was registered to Donald McLeod, 45. They announced their presence and knocked on the van for several minutes before the occupants, McLeod and a 17-year-old, appeared in the driver and passenger’s seats, according to the affidavit.
McLeod was holding a cellphone and “kept saying to hold on he was trying to reach his attorney,” the affidavit says.
McLeod invoked his Miranda Rights and did not speak to officers.
The teen told an officer he was at the park to meet with this man, who he only knew as "Don," to inquire about a construction job and clean up the man’s van, according to the affidavit. Later during an interview, the teen broke down crying and admitted he lied about why he was at the park because he didn’t want his parents to “think differently about him.”
According to the affidavit, the teen used a fake name on the app Grindr and he was trying to meet up with men to have sex for money because he had spent all the money his mom had given him.
The teen said he told the man he knew as Don that he was 19 years old and sent him an inappropriate picture. The man sent the teen multiple inappropriate pictures and “offered multiple times to meet with him to have sex for money,” the affidavit says.
The teen said he was supposed to meet up with him and another man at Monfort Park, but when the other man didn’t show up, he and the man he knew as Don went into the back of the van. The teen said he told the man he was 17 and asked if he was OK with that, and he replied he was, the affidavit said. Then, the teen told the man he could touch him inappropriately for $20, to which the man agreed, according to the affidavit.
The day after the incident, police searched McLeod’s van, seized his electronic devices and ordered him to provide a DNA sample.
The Town of Severance announced on April 7 that McLeod had submitted a letter of resignation the day prior.
McLeod turned himself in and was arrested Sept. 9 on one count of patronizing a prostituted child, according to the Weld County Sheriff's Office. He’s scheduled for a bond hearing on Friday.