COLORADO SPRINGS — It appears an El Paso County judge has had enough with a squatter who has filed multiple lawsuits from behind bars and will now have to seek court approval before filing any new cases.
Jack Cole has sued Sheriff Bill Elder, the Colorado Attorney General and an innocent family who had to evict him from a house he was squatting in---just to name a few of the cases he's filed.
Back in 2017, Cole was living in a deceased woman's house and refused to leave---forcing the family to evict him through court proceedings.
After being kicked out, Cole did not leave the family alone.
More than two years later, Cole filed a lawsuit against the Clark family for more than $250,000 in damages for "injured feelings" and "mental anguish".
"We've lost someone we've loved dearly and we haven't been able to mourn her because it's one thing after the next," Michelle Clark, Wendy's sister told News 5 last year.
Wendy Clark passed away in October 2017. When Michelle and the family went to clean out her home, they discovered random people, including Jack Cole were living inside.
Eventually the courts evicted Cole, but it wasn't long before he would be arrested, charged, and convicted of sexual assault in an unrelated case.
While in prison, Cole decided to file nearly a dozen lawsuits.
Cole initially won a default judgment against the Clark family after they failed to show up to court, but News 5 Investigates later learned the family had no clue about the lawsuit because they had not been served any paperwork.
"He's very conniving," Michelle said. "He knows how to work the system. He got away with everything in my sister's house without getting even a slap on the wrist. He knows how to work the system and what he needs to do to get what he wants. That's what he's doing right now is forging the paperwork to win a civil lawsuit against me."
We reviewed the affidavit of service which claims Michelle was served the lawsuit by a man named Roger Travis Rickard at the El Paso County Courthouse.
However, that couldn't have been true because Michelle had timesheets showing she was at work at USAA at the time and had no business being at the courthouse.
Rickard was also behind bars at the time the alleged paperwork was served.
Shortly after our story aired exposing major discrepancies the court apparently overlooked, the judge who initially ruled in favor of Cole's lawsuit against the Clark family agreed to review the case.
Rickard, later confessed to the judge that the process service was falsified by Cole.
Judge G. David Miller tossed out the judgment and labeled Cole a "vexatious litigant".
"The court finds that Mr. Cole has filed frivolous and vexatious lawsuits against numerous persons and entities not for the purpose of vindicating valid rights, but in an attempt to exact vengeance and harass," the court order said. "He has further engaged in other conduct that constitutes an abuse, not only of the court's time and resources, but the time and resources of many innocent citizens."
Cole will now need to meet certain criteria and ask the court for permission and approval to file any new lawsuits moving forward.
You can read a copy of the judge's order here.
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