DENVER – Robin Niceta, the partner of Aurora’s former police chief who faces charges after being accused of making a false child abuse report regarding an Aurora City Council member, made her first court appearance Friday.
Niceta, 40, was in an Arapahoe County courthouse for the first time since she was charged in May with felony attempt to influence a public servant and misdemeanor false reporting of child abuse.
Niceta had been a social worker and case manager with the Arapahoe County Department of Human Services and is charged with falsely accusing Aurora City Council member Danielle Jurinsky of unlawful sexual contact with her own child a day after Jurinsky called now-former Aurora Police Chief Vanessa Wilson “trash” on a conservative radio talk show in January.
According to an affidavit, Niceta had anonymously reported the tip. On April 19, a criminal complaint was filed with the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office regarding the DHS complaint against Jurinsky.
Eventually, Arapahoe County investigators spoke with Niceta’s supervisor who said she noticed similarities between the voice who reported the allegation and Niceta’s voice. Investigators talked with Niceta on May 3 and told her the tip had come from her cell phone, then obtained a warrant three days later to search the device.
The forensic search of the phone and her laptop turned up inconsistencies with what she had told investigators, and showed that there was zero chance she would have known about the complaint and referred it just hours after it was made. The allegation she made against Jurinsky was found to be false, according to the affidavit.
Niceta said little during Friday’s court appearance and declined to speak with Denver7 Investigates before or after the hearing. But Jurinsky and her family were in court for the hearing and did not hold back on the allegations in an interview.
“It’s the first time I’ve ever seen her in person, and there was just a lot of anxiety for me,” Jurinsky said. “…We wanted to see her and we wanted her to see us.”
Niceta resigned from her position with Arapahoe County on May 4, a day after she spoke with investigators. Jurinsky is now calling on the county to review every case Niceta oversaw at the county DHS.
“My eyes are wide open right now. This case has exploded into something much bigger than what happened to me,” Jurinsky said. “This is no longer about me. This is a fight for total justice for every single person that has been wronged by Arapahoe County DHS.”
Arapahoe County confirmed it had received Jurinsky’s complaint and was working to determine a way to review those cases and said the Colorado Attorney General’s Office and Arapahoe County DHS have agreed to assist with the investigation.
In a statement, a spokesperson with Arapahoe County said the county has received an outline of the scope of the Colorado Department of Human Services investigation into Niceta's case work. The investigation is expected to conclude by the end of July, according to the spokesperson.
A spokesperson with the Attorney General’s Office said he was unable to confirm or comment on whether the office was assisting in the investigation on Friday.
At the end of the hearing Friday, the judge in the case issued a protection order mandating Niceta cannot go near Jurinsky. In June, Jurinsky filed paperwork to give notice she intends to sue Niceta and the county.
Niceta is next due in court on Aug. 29 for an arraignment, at which she is expected to enter a plea in the case.