Adams County Assessor Gil Reyes pleaded no contest May 29 to one count of misdemeanor first-degree official misconduct for improperly evaluating properties for a campaign donor.
Reyes, 60, originally pleaded not guilty to nine counts of misdemeanor official misconduct and was scheduled to go to trial May 29.
Instead, Reyes entered a no contest plea to one count and the court deferred judgment and sentencing for a year.
If after a year Reyes does not commit any criminal offenses, excluding minor traffic offenses, the case will be dismissed, said Dan Recht, who is one of Reyes’ attorneys.
“This has been a very emotional and difficult time for my family and me,” said Reyes in a statement released by his attorney.
“The prosecution was politically motivated. I am happy to have it behind me.”
Reyes, a Democrat, was re-elected to a four-year term in 2010.
Prosecutors say Reyes improperly appraised properties for Majestic Realty Co., a California-based warehouse developer and a contributor to Reye’s campaigns. Majestic has nine warehouses in Aurora.
In 2011, the State Board of Equalization ordered reappraisals of the properties after an investigation concluded that Reyes had ordered reduced valuations that resulted in tax reductions for properties associated with donors to his campaigns, according to the Adams County District Attorney’s office.
“After extensive investigation and evaluation by our office and the FBI, we decided that this was the best resolution of the case,” said DA Dave Young, adding that each case must be evaluated based on the strength of the evidence and witnesses.
Recht said that Reye’s defense team was confident that if the case had gone to trial, Reyes would have been found not guilty.
“However, juries are unpredictable and one can never be sure,” he said. “Now, with this resolution, it is virtually certain that the criminal case pending against Gil Reyes will be dismissed appropriately leaving Gil with no criminal record.”
In 2011, Reyes was fined $300 plus $217 in court costs after pleading guilty to an unclassified misdemeanor charge of failure to report gifts of sports tickets he got from Majestic’s vice president.