Evans police chief reopens investigation into death of Ashley Fallis in 2012



The Evans police chief is asking Longmont Police to investigate one of his officers.


The request comes on the heels of his announcement Tuesday that he is reopening the investigation into the 2012 death of 28-year old Ashley Fallis.


Fallis, who was the director of the Colorado Pediatric Hydrocephalus Foundation, was found with a gunshot wound in her home, on Zinfandel Street in Evans, on New Year’s Day 2012.  She died a short time later.


Her death was originally ruled a suicide, but Police Chief Rick Brandt told 7NEWS that new information has surfaced about an officer involved in the original investigation.


“This new information includes allegations from witness accounts that we were previously unaware of,” Brandt said.


“Specifically, the allegations say that the officer omitted material statements from witnesses and that he changed at least one statement of a key witness in the case to support the conclusion of suicide,” the chief added.


Neighbors, who declined on-camera interviews, told 7NEWS they didn’t believe Fallis’ death was a suicide.


“I never bought into that,” one neighbor said.


Another neighbor said he heard “yelling and screaming at the Fallis’ house all the time.”


Chief Brandt said investigators from his department worked with the Colorado Bureau of Investigation and with experts from other agencies on the original investigation. He said both his department and the Weld County Coroner ruled Fallis’ death a suicide.


When asked if the victim’s husband, Tom Fallis, cooperated with investigators, Brandt replied, “Yes.”


When asked if any “people of interest,” including Tom Fallis, who was a Weld County sheriff’s deputy at the time, received preferential treatment during the investigation, Brandt said, “I can tell you that no person was handled with any kind of preferential treatment regardless of their position in the community or anywhere else when we were conducting our investigation.”


He said the case was thoroughly and properly investigated, but that the new information requires that the case be reopened.


When asked if it is now considered a homicide investigation, Brandt replied, “I’m not prepared to draw any conclusions.”


“We want to be transparent,” he said. “That’s why we’ve asked Fort Collins Police to review the information and follow up. We’ve also asked Longmont Police to look into the allegations against the officer.”


Brandt says he’s confident police will get to the bottom of the case, but added he didn’t know how long it will take.


Brandt did not release the officer’s name, but said he is still on duty.


Fallis went to Bear Creek High School in Lakewood and worked as a respiratory therapist. She was the mother of three children — Madelynn, Jolie and Blake.


She was well known in the community because of her activism after Blake was diagnosed with Hydrocephalus, the inability of cerebrospinal fluid to drain properly. Fallis served as the Colorado director of the Pediatric Hydrocephalus Foundation.


The current director of the foundation, Christina Brown, told 7NEW that “if something happened that was not right, we hope there is justice for Ashley and her family. Our prayers are with them.”

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