Neighbors Shocked by Murder Investigation

By: Jessica Zartler Email
By: Jessica Zartler Email

Mesa County deputies arrested 51-year-old Allen Grabe just minutes after dispatchers got the call that shots were fired at his home on 3045 Wedgewood Drive.

The sheriff's office tells 11 News his son was found dead inside the home.

People who live in the neighborhood tell 11 News it's usually very quiet,
but that changed Thursday night when they heard gunshots and sirens at this house.

They never thought their next door neighbor would be the center of a murder investigation, especially for the murder of his own son.

Danny Emert lives next door to Allen Grabe. He didn't have to wait for the morning paper to know that something terrible happened Thursday night.

"I heard a bunch of commotion, then the gun went off."

Emert says it's what he saw next that told him something was very, very wrong.

"I came outside and saw the father sittin on the doorstep with a gun and somebody was lying on the ground."

A few minutes later he heard sirens and Mesa County deputies were swarming the neighborhood just before 10pm on Thursday.

"They rushed in and yelled 'sheriff's office' and went in."

A few minutes later, our cameras captured Mesa County deputies walking Grabe out in handcuffs.

A CBI background check shows no prior arrests for the 51-year-old in Colorado. The only court documents on file with Mesa County show one traffic ticket 15 years ago adding to neighbors disbelief a murder investigation is underway next door.

"They're a nice family next door. I wouldn't have thought it would have happened there," said Emert.

The Mesa County Sheriff's Office tells 11 News Grabe's arrest affidavit is sealed while they continue to piece together evidence found in the home.

Investigators will not confirm the age of the victim. They say the Mesa County Coroner is doing an autopsy to determine a cause of death.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Robert Location: Washington on Sep 17, 2008 at 10:09 PM
    This is nothing but tragic. I know a number of autistic children. Raising such a child can take enormous patience and self-control. Those parents who can act in the child's best interest, and not merely react to the child, often see substantial improvement. No matter how difficult the situation, there can be no justification for Allen Grabe to resort to murder. If he couldn't handle the stress, he should have gone away somewhere to get help. No amount of regret now is going to bring his son back.
  • by Lisa Location: Clifton on Sep 16, 2008 at 12:57 PM
    Where was the mother when this happened? She most have known something was going to happen.
  • by Juanita Location: Clifton on Sep 16, 2008 at 10:04 AM
    I could in no way hurt my grandson no matter how annoying he got, and I do believe that Allen definitely did the wrong thing, but before we chastise the father lets wait until we hear the facts of what happened. Im sure no matter what the facts are it certainly could have been handled differently,but my hope is that more help will be forthcoming to aid families of disabled children.
  • by Angela Location: Grand Junction on Sep 16, 2008 at 09:43 AM
    I am the mother of a 9yr old son with autism. Yes, it can be very difficult at times to handle but I would NEVER consider hurting him in any way. That is a cop out excuse. If you have a child with a disabilty and it is to rough for you to handle, tell your doctors, teachers, anyone so that help can be found for you. I do agree that there is not enough here in the valley to help cope with this disabality however shooting your child is not the answer.
  • by Juanita Location: Whitteker on Sep 15, 2008 at 10:38 PM
    I have known Allen for about 28 years, although I haven't seen him for a long time. We used to attend the same home prayer meetings and worked together in a helping ministry. He was a quiet person who loved the Lord and wanted to serve the Lord with all his heart. I was very surprised and saddened when I read of his killing his son. I know that feelings run high when something like this happens, but as the grandmother of a child that has ausbergers syndrome I know how difficult it is to take care of a child with this disability. His mother, aunt little brother and myself all live together and I don't believe my daughter could handle the stress if we didn't help out. Someone with "normal" children could not possibly understand it. There are few programs to help parents deal with this disability in this area,so I hope something good will come out of this tragedy, and the powers that be will focus on getting more help for families of this disability.
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