Charges pending against man sending lewd emails

William Charles Traphagen

The Paonia Police Department is asking that anyone who receives an email from William Charles Traphagen, address unknown, contact them as soon as possible.

At 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, July 23, the Paradise Theatre in Paonia began receiving profanity-filled emails from the address, with the "From" and "Reply to" name of "Jesus F---ing Christ."

Addressing the manager by her first name and using numerous swear words and insults, Traphagen ended the message: "COWARD. EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU - WORTHY OF DEATH." Four subsequent email messages were sent to the theatre email address.

Mayor Charles Stewart said the Town of Paonia and at least two female town officials also received similar emails from Traphagen, which he referred to as "borderline threatening."

Traphagen was contacted by the police department and told not to have further contact with the parties.

Between 6:15-8 a.m. Wednesday, Traphagen sent four more emails to the theatre. At 2:30 p.m. he showed up at the theatre, where he was told to leave and allegedly harassed volunteers.

An article published in the Dec. 27, 2016 Yuma, Ariz., Sun newspaper said Traphagen, at the time 38, allegedly threatened a Yuma city council member and was expected to enter a plea in Yuma Municipal Court. A web search revealed no other information about Traphagen.

Police chief Neil Ferguson declined to further comment on the case due to an active investigation, but did say that charges against Traphagen are pending. He urges anyone who has similar experiences with Traphagen to contact the police department at 527-4822.


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