Ex-Arapahoe County Sheriff Sullivan to be sentenced for violating probation

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CENTENNIAL, Colo. -- Former Arapahoe County Sheriff Pat Sullivan will find out Thursday if he is headed to prison. The once-iconic sheriff will be sentenced Thursday afternoon for violating probation at least three times.

The hearing is expected to draw supporters and those who are still angered by the judge's original sentence.

Two years ago, Sullivan pleaded guilty in a methamphetamine for sex case. A judge spared him prison time and he was sentenced to probation. This time, a harsher sentence is expected.

A month ago, Sullivan admitted to a judge he left the state in violation of probation orders, but he didn't address why he allegedly violated his mandatory substance abuse screenings.

He skipped them at least 30 times -- and according to court documents, testing positive for meth and alcohol at least eight times in two years.

"They gave him a second chance, they extended his probation, he screwed up again and I think the overwhelming odds are he's going to be incarcerated," criminal defense attorney Dan Recht said.

The same judge sentenced Sullivan to probation in April 2012 for possession of meth and 38 days in jail for soliciting a prostitute. The former decorated sheriff was caught in an undercover meth-for-sex sting involving male prostitutes.

"He seems to have become prematurely this pathetic old man with a drug and alcohol problem," Recht said.

Sullivan faces up to 18 months in prison. He's scheduled to be sentenced at 1:30 p.m.