After a week-long trial, UFO author and self-proclaimed alien abductee Stan Romanek has been found guilty of one child-pornography-related charge – sexual exploitation of a minor. The drama played out in a Colorado courtroom roughly three years after the Loveland resident was initially arrested on child pornography charges. The child porn case of Stan Romanek garnered national attention after Netflix released a documentary telling the story of Romanek’s life, Extraordinary: The Stan Romanek Story, in July.
While 54-year-old Romanek was convicted of one charge, he was acquitted of a second similar, but more serious, child-pornography-related charge by a jury on August 8. His trial, which was touted to include testimony bringing the subject of UFOs into the courtroom, was handed over to a 12-person jury earlier this week.
As Reporter Herald reports, Stan Romanek was charged with two felonies. One alleged that he possessed child pornography on his home computer, while the other claimed he also distributed the material. After five days of testimony, the jury ruled that Romanek knowingly possessed the indecent material, which featured young girls in sexually suggestive poses, but that he did not knowingly share the content via an online file-sharing program. The jury determined that prosecutors lacked sufficient evidence to convict Stan Romanek on the second charge.
Prior to his arrest on child pornography charges, Stan Romanek made a name for himself in the world of UFO abduction and extraterrestrial research enthusiasts after claiming to have been the victim of repeated ET abductions spanning back to 2000.
According to Romanek, who wrote several books detailing his purported experiences, he was the target of extraterrestrial stalking and harassment, the victim of repeated extraterrestrial abductions, the unwilling “father” of multiple human/ET hybrids, and (perhaps most importantly to his criminal defense) the victim of a concerted government attempt to silence him.
After his arrest, Stan Romanek publicly proclaimed his innocence and claimed that the child pornography accusations against him were a government attempt to discredit his UFO tales. Despite the unbelievable defense publicly touted by Romanek, his wife Lisa, and their circle of close friends and UFO enthusiasts, defense attorneys Elizabeth and Ted McClintock kept UFO talk off the witness stand. In particular, the duo objected to prosecutors asking witnesses if they’d met Stan Romanek during “paranormal events.”
“Bringing in statements about UFO investigations were not relevant to the case.”
While the Romanek defense team attempted to shutter talk of UFO abduction and the paranormal, they didn’t shy away from their primary defense. Namely, that Loveland Police Department Detective Brian Koopman (head of the Romanek child pornography investigation) had allegedly committed professional misconduct in the past, including violating the civil rights of defendants. The detective was just acquitted last year of criminally lying in his police work in an unrelated case.
Also seemingly relevant to the Stan Romanek child pornography case were the allegations of former Loveland officer Tammy Fisher, who previously filed a lawsuit claiming that Koopman falsely accused her of a crime after she became friends with the Romaneks and told the couple that they were being actively investigated for child-pornography-related offenses.
Her lawsuit was later dismissed by a federal judge, however, because Fisher was never actually charged with a crime.
Testimony pertaining to the past alleged misconduct of Detective Koopman by a woman named Stacy Lynne, who has extensively followed the cases against the detective and even spoken out at Loveland City Council, was largely prohibited at the Stan Romanek child pornography trial. Lynn was limited to speaking about her “opinions” of Koopman. The Romaneks claim that the suppression of Lynn’s wider testimony damaged their case, but Deputy District Attorney Mitch Murray claims that it was “not critical” to the prosecution.
According to Stan Romanek himself, Koopman is “incredibly corrupt,” and he served as the prosecution’s primary witness in the child pornography charges that were levied against him. Romanek went on to say that he feels as though his case was lost because his defense team was not allowed to present its evidence against Koopman in its entirety. Romanek believes he would have been acquitted on both charges if the jury would have had all of the information about the prosecution’s primary witness.
“The guy is incredibly corrupt, and he’s getting away with this stuff. And the only reason I think we didn’t win is because the DA didn’t allow us to bring in all the evidence against Koopman.”
It is expected that Stan Romanek will appeal the conviction, and defense attorney Elizabeth McClintock says that she will recommend just that. What’s more, it’s likely that the issue of Detective Koopman’s credibility will be investigated by a new defense team, as she says she will also advise Romanek to hire new counsel for his appeal – standard procedure in any appealed conviction.
“It’s one of those issues that shakes out in the end. Eventually, if it’s a real big problem, somebody will address it at a later stage.”
McClintock also believes that Stan Romanek will avoid prison time for his child pornography conviction, but it’s likely that the UFO enthusiast will have to register as a sex offender.
“We don’t see an awful lot of defendants going to prison on cases like this.”
Stan Romanek remains free on bond until his sentencing hearing on October 19.
[Featured Image by Loveland Police Department]