Jerry Rhea, the former owner of Quality Paving and Quality Resurfacing, will be free on an appeal bond while his case is being considered by the Colorado Supreme Court.
During a July 25 hearing, Judge Steven Eugene Shinn denied a motion by Rhea’s defense team to allow Rhea to remain free while he received treatment for two torn rotator cuff injuries. However, Rhea does not have to report to jail while the state Supreme Court considers the appeal of his conviction on criminal counts associated with the county public works scandal. Shinn issued a $100,000 appeal bond for Rhea that had to be posted by 3 p.m. July 25.
Krista Flannigan, the Adams County District Attorney’s Office public information director, confirmed Rhea paid the bond on time.
Before issuing the appeal bond, Shinn had granted Rhea three court continuances to determine whether or not Rhea’s shoulder injury also caused him mental distress, a sufficient requirement for a stay of execution of his sentence.
Rhea was sentenced May 7 to nine years in prison after a jury found him guilty of 23 criminal counts, including theft, conspiracy to commit theft and attempting to influence a public servant in connection with the scandal.
The convictions of five employees of the county, Quality Paving and Quality Resurfacing stem from incidents in which employees of the county and Quality Paving were involved in overbilling, billing for work never done and letting a private company use county equipment. The District Attorney’s Office alleges that taxpayers were billed for $1.8 million for work that was never done.
Two more people, including former Public Works Director Lee Asay, were charged in connection with the scandal. Former paving company employee Louie Schimpf was acquitted in October.
Asay also appeared in court on July 25. His defense attorney asked to reschedule his Sept. 13 trial and for a change the venue of the trial. Both were denied.