The Oddest Couple

He was thin, she was fat. He was passive, she was pushy. He's alive, she's dead.

But Cohen doesn't think there was anything in those depositions that could be used against his client. The depositions, he says, were filled with "tiny little bullshit things, nothing of any substance."

Since charges were filed against him in September, Mike Grainger hasn't done much to further his own cause. He's had several run-ins with the law, including a blowup in court at the preliminary hearing in October. The flash point came during Tonia's testimony, when she told the court that her mother told her Mike treated her "twice as bad as my dad ever did."

At that point Mike exploded, standing up in the courtroom and calling Tonia a "fucking bitch" several times.

The judge told him to stay seated. Sheriff's officers restrained him. "Let me go!" he shouted.

"Will you relax?"
"Get off my chest!"
"No, sir."

"Get off my fucking chest, you hear me?" On the audio transcript, Grainger sounds desperate.

The judge finally had Mike removed from the courtroom.
Looking back at the incident, Mike says the "anger has been building for a long time. I don't deal with it. I just put the anger in my gut. It just comes out sometimes."

This past November, Boulder police were summoned to Mike's house after he allegedly called a social worker and threatened suicide. Police set up a perimeter around his home, but Mike wouldn't talk to them except to call them "fucking pigs," according to police reports.

The cops left but returned the next evening after a neighbor phoned in a complaint about a gun being fired. Police never recovered a gun from the house, and other neighbors say they never heard a gunshot.

However, Mike was arrested the next day in Lafayette and charged with resisting arrest and reckless discharge of a firearm. He spent a week in jail. Mike says the police are harassing him. "Their minds were made up from day one," he says. "If I'd done that [killed Sonia], I'm not gonna make no damn story up. What they say happened didn't happen. I think it will go to a murder trial, but I hope it don't go that far."

These days Mike Grainger takes care of his dogs. He goes to the Grizzly Rose on Saturday nights sometimes and dances to country music. The dancing "works for a week," he says. "Then I feel like I'm back, trying to get by the pain."

He says he'll never remarry, that he's looking for "just somebody to talk with, someone to be friends." Mostly he waits for his arraignment, which is scheduled for February 5. If convicted on the murder charge, he could be sentenced to anywhere from 16 to 48 years in prison.

Elaine and Richard Wade say they don't believe Mike killed Sonia, but the future they paint for him is grim nonetheless. "I know he has money from his settlement, but after all this, [the lawyers] will strip him of every dime," says Richard. "He's gonna end up in an institution. I just know it."

For now, it's that time of year again for Mike Grainger: February, the month of his wife's death, the month of the accident that sent his and Sonia's lives into a downward spiral.

"I have enough pain down there to last a lifetime," Mike says. "Enough anger to last a hundred lifetimes. Just keep it to myself.

« Previous Page
My Voice Nation Help
Sort: Newest | Oldest