Michael Mangino, busted for sex crimes, 2nd Aurora DARE cop accused of pervy kid habit

DARE officers are charged with going into classrooms and telling kids that they should stay off drugs. But Michael Mangino probably should have added that they should stay off cops, too. He's been accused of several sex crimes in relation to an allegedly inappropriate relationship with a fifteen-year-old runaway. And he's not the first Aurora DARE officer to face charges about an unhealthy obsession on children.

Back in December, you'll recall that Aurora DARE coordinator Morgan Sellman was busted for child pornography in Colorado Springs. He hadn't officially visited classrooms as a DARE instructor since 2001, and if the charges against him are proven in court, that'll have been a very good thing.

No such luck with Mangino, whose school visits were so numerous that before news broke about him being accused of sexual exploitation of a child and contributing to the delinquency of a minor (plus official misconduct), Aurora Police Chief Daniel Oates reportedly met with administrators from six facilities: Clyde Miller Elementary, Vaughn Elementary, Lynn Knoll Elementary and Arkansas Elementary, all in the Aurora Public Schools system, plus Cherry Creek's Eastridge Elementary and St. Pius X Catholic School, part of the Archdiocese of Denver.

Oates said the first complaint about Mangino came from the runaway herself, who first came into contact with him on March 9, Oates said at a press conference. After that, his fellow APD members found naughty photos of the girl on Mangino's smart phone, which wasn't too smart, obviously. And neither was his decision to store some other media, including videos of sheet shenanigans with women who appeared to be adults -- and a shot of a girl's ass that seems to have been taken at a school. Classy.

Of late, Aurora cops have mostly made the news for getting shot. One was injured by Aaron Williams, who allegedly took a family of four hostage before being killed by police trying to flee their home. Another was winged in an incident in which Oleg Gidenko died and two accused compatriots were busted.

But the Mangino and Sellman arrests are a very different type of PR for Aurora -- the undeniably terrible kind. And Mangino's on the streets again, having been released after posting $20,000 bond. Don't you feel safer?

Look below to see large versions of Mangino's and Sellman's booking photos, plus a CBS4 report about the latest arrest.

More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "Jay Sheridan: Jackie Hasty charged in death of Limon officer killed by husband Dennis Hasty."

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts