Paul Simmons was sentenced in Denver District Court to a total of six years for stealing identities and medical records. His accomplice, Dawn Philbin, pleaded guilty to the same charges, but hasn’t been sentenced yet.
The two were busted after Simmons, 46, got behind on the rent for his storage unit and its contents were auctioned off. When the highest bidder, Brandon Michael, began going through his winnings he discovered hundreds of hospital records, real and fraudulent identifying documents, cameras, video recorders, cell phones and drug paraphernalia.
Michael’s first tried taking the stolen records to the Denver police, but was told he should just throw them away himself. Michael instead took the records to Deborah Sherman, a reporter for 9NEWS, who tracked down Simmons. Sherman turned over all the evidence to the police in January, when her investigation was complete.
Simmons tried to turn himself in a few days later at the Denver City Jail after the police called to say they had an arrest warrant. But, just like the police initially refused the evidence against him, a Sheriff’s deputy at the jail said he didn’t know anything about a warrant for Simmons and sent him away.
The next day when police arrested Simmons, he told the police investigators he used the stolen identities to buy the over-the-counter ingredients to make methamphetamine.
Philbin, 51, worked at St. Anthony Central Hospital, and admitted to stealing 20 patients’ records each week over a period of a year and a half for Simmons. On Simmons’ instruction, she stole the records of white men who’d undergone scheduled surgeries or been emergency room patients.