Gary Flakes, who spent 12 years in jail for his role in the 1997 Valentine’s Day murders of 13-year-old Andy Westbay and 15-year-old Scott Hawrysiak, was soundly defeated last night in his quest to become the next Colorado Springs City Councilman from District 4. Flakes came in fourth place with a mere 4% of the vote. Helen Collins, who received 39.46% of the vote, was declared the winner. She also defeated Deborah Hendrix, who received 34.93%, and Dennis Moore, who received 21.6%.
Court documents accused fellow accessory-to-murder Jeron Grant and Flakes of driving up behind Westbay and Hawrysiak and opening fire with a 12-gauge shotgun. Neither Grant nor Flakes ever have admitted to pulling the trigger, which caused each to serve a sentence of accessory to murder, instead of murder, which outraged the community during the trial.
Flakes candidacy was controversial from the beginning. He claimed he was a changed man; however, the families of his victims say they are still waiting for an apology from him. According to Huffington Post:
“Michelle Hawrysiak, Scott’s sister, told KRDO that Flakes has never attempted to apologize to her family, ignored an email she wrote to him asking to meet him face to face and said his candidacy are ‘a slap in the face.’”
While Flakes’ loss is in no way justice for the two young lives that were cut short on Valentine’s Day in 1997, at least the victims’ families don’t have to experience a constant reminder of their loss at City Hall.