It was a perfect autumn evening, much like it was on October 18, 2010. Someone draped the paloverde tree under which Drenth's body was found with "Batman" crepe paper in honor of his childhood fantasy figure.

Diane Drenth, Sean's mother, tried to keep the mood as light as possible with anecdotes of happier times. But she also expressed her abiding desire to have her son's passing deemed a line-of-duty death. That would allow his name to be placed on the state and national Law Enforcement Officers Memorial walls.

"If they aren't going to work any harder to solve the murder," she said, "the least that he deserves is to be on those walls."

Sean and Colleen Drenth were high school sweethearts who got married in 1997.
Courtesy of Colleen Drenth
Sean and Colleen Drenth were high school sweethearts who got married in 1997.

Colleen Drenth would benefit financially if local pension boards and other entities deemed the death a line-of-duty occurrence, including about $325,000 through the federal Bureau of Justice Assistance Public Safety Officers' Benefit program. But Colleen, director of human resources at a Scottsdale firm with about 100 employees, insists she couldn't care less about that money.

"I am about doing what is right for my husband," she says.

Heston Silbert, who caused such a stir with the wallet at Sean Drenth's church memorial service, decided to say a few words to those gathered.

"I don't know what happened out here," Chief Silbert said at the end of his poignant recollections about his friend, "but I do know that an exceptional cop died on the job, and it shouldn't have happened."

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6 comments
civilwrongs
civilwrongs

In May of 2009 I had been charged with misdemeanor assault arizing out of a DV incident. I was handcuffed and in police custody at the Squaw Peak Police Substation when I was attacked by 4 officers. Sean Drenth was present and like every other officer in the precinct that night failed to request medical care and even more the officers failed to mention anything about it in their reports. I was struck in the face, knocked unconscious and transported to 4th ave jail in that condition. I recieved absolutely no medical care until the next day when a nurse at the jail called me an ambulance. I have all the records and reports needed to show this happened. Out of fear I kept this incident to myself. I am a rather small female and was frequently harrassed by this group of officers. Again in Feburary 2010 I am arrested for the same bs and taken to the Squaw Peak station with Sgt. Drenth the acting supervisor. Again with my hands cuffed behind my back I was pushed to the floor by my arresting officer in plain view of other officers resulting in a gash to my eye and several broken teeth. To justify the excessive use of force I was charged with assaulting an officer and spent a month in jail. The charged was dismissed. I hired a civil attorney the second time. The two assaults have as far as I know only have two officers in common, Sgt. Drenth and Officer Ryan Murphy. Officer Murphy is mentioned in this article as being the only one who would speak out in favor of a suicide theory. He was one of the officers who beat me unconscious in May and he was my arresting officer in Feburary who pushed me face first to the cement floor of the precinct and charged me with felony assault. All this was fine with Sgt. Drenth who was a rather crappy babysitter to his young officers and indiferent to their conduct. My civil attorney was hired one month before Sgt. Drenth was found dead and about the same time he and Murphy were transfered to South Mountain. The civil attorney backed out of the case shortly before the statutes ran out and after Drenth was found dead (he took my case on contingency) saying it would cost to much for him and it was to risky because of my DV arrests.

FuckthePPD
FuckthePPD

Buh bye Drenth,  you suck started your shotgun and will not be missed. One down of many..just like the pigs Murphy, Figeroa, and Erfle. You punks won't be missed.

bob_lablaw96
bob_lablaw96

I have now read both parts to this sad saga.  Nowhere did it mention whether there was gunshot residue on Drenth's hands, or anywhere on his body to indicate where the shotgun was when it was fired.   I am not a homicide detective, but those two issues jumped at me.

Cops rarely commit suicide on duty. It is a slam to the department, in addition to the pain dumped on family.  I sure would like to know what the GSR tests showed.

mandymarie7835
mandymarie7835

@civilwrongs My friend has a very similar experience as you have described with Officer Ryan Murphy. What Goes Around Comes Around, Doesn't It?  I was cheering the day I read that Officer Drenth was found dead. I don't give a flying F if it was suicide or homicide. I'm just over-joyed  he's in hell.  Bless you my dear friend and survivor - CivilWrongs and that no good attorney you hired will meet his fate too. De Jure Sanjuinis Coronae!

civilwrongs
civilwrongs

The officers who would have been named in the complaint had it been filed are Ryan Murphy, Joel Zemaintis, Earl Erickson, Chad Moreth ( add perjury for him ) a few others I can't think of the names off hand however I never toss out any documents so I have a file collecting dust at home. One other officer who is bacteria on snail scrodum is Officer Brian Webster who's hatred for women was obvious. I looked him up in Maricopa Superior Family Court case info and it looks like his x wife has been making him her bitch for a long time now. I remember a small news blurb about officers at squaw peak having a little steroid issue during this time frame...hmmm.

 
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