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Former Fremont Co investigator convicted for abuse of public records

Posted: 4:15 PM, Jun 28, 2018
Updated: 2018-06-28 18:15:26-04

A former Lieutenant with the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office was convicted on two charges related to case evidence found inside his personal storage unit in 2016.

Robert Dodd was found guilty of abuse of public records (a misdemeanor) and two counts of official misconduct (a petty offense). The 6-person Fremont County jury found Dodd not guilty of criminal possession of an identifying document.

The maximum penalty for the class 1 misdemeanor conviction is 18 months in jail and a fine of $5,000. Sentencing is scheduled for July 23rd.

The case revolves around the 2006 unsolved murder of 17-year-old Candace Hiltz, who was found shot to death in her Copper Gulch home.  According to investigators, Hiltz was shot 7 times with 3 different guns.

Dodd was one of the responding officers to the scene. According to the victim’s mother, the scene was not processed in a timely manner and now she’s worried the case will never be solved.

Late in 2016, state investigators were contacted by Rick Ratzlaff. He won an auction for the content’s of Dodd’s unit at a storage facility after Dodd defaulted on monthly payments.  In the coming months, investigators visited a nearby landfill where they reportedly found more evidence in the case.

Robert Dodd retired as a lieutenant in April 2017 shortly after he was placed on administrative leave by Sheriff Jim Beicker. Prosecutors had filed charges of second degree official misconduct and abuse of public records. After leaving the sheriff’s office, Dodd found another law enforcement job in Texas.

During testimony, jurors heard from the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office records custodian who said Lt. Dodd edited the archive report for the murder of Candace Hiltz 6 times after learning the contents of his storage locker were sold.