Ted Decker, a candidate for Maize City Council in Tuesday’s election, is facing trial in May on a felony charge that he stalked an ex-girlfriend in violation of a court protective order to stay away from her, court records show.
It’s the latest legal problem for Decker, who, according to state records, served two years in prison in the early 1980s for kidnapping and aggravated battery, was convicted of misdemeanor domestic battery in 2000, and had a protective order issued against him based on a complaint from a third ex-girlfriend in 2006.
Decker, 52, a retired truck driver on disability who also goes by “Teddy,” registered to vote and registered to run for the council on the same day, Jan. 22, according to election commissioner records. The stalking charge was filed in November 2012, records show.
Decker said he decided to run for City Council because he thinks the older part of Maize is being ignored by the current city government.
“I went to high school (in Maize) when there was one high school and one junior high school together,” he said. “I’ve just seen so much stuff change in the last years. And I’m just wondering why everything new is getting better, but the old stuff, people that built that town, are pretty much the way things were 20 to 30 years ago.”
Decker also said he’s involved in a dispute with the city over a trailer he moved onto a lot he owns. He said the city gave permission for the trailer and then revoked it after he spent $7,000 moving the trailer to the site.
He is one of four candidates running for two seats on the council.
Decker said the pending criminal case against him involves a former girlfriend whom he had helped get discount rent to live in the mobile home next door to his.
“Things just didn’t work out and I tried to get on with my life, but she didn’t want me to get on with it,” Decker said. “It’s still pending and I’m going to fight it to the end, but I ain’t too worried about it.”
The ex-girlfriend alleges that he vandalized her car and yard and repeatedly tried to contact her, although she had told him to leave her alone. The woman also alleges that Decker used various phones to call her after she blocked his number, came to her workplace, and mounted a camera on his home, pointed toward hers, to monitor activity at her house.
The criminal complaint filed by prosecutors charges that Decker repeatedly engaged in acts “that violated the provisions of the (protective) order and would cause a reasonable person to fear for such person’s safety.”
Decker denied he spied on the woman or damaged her property and said it was a case of a relationship that went bad.
“I was 20 years older than she was and she moved out there right next door to me and I thought, you know, you don’t know somebody really until you get to be around them every day and stuff,” he said. “I just didn’t think it was going to work out, asked her to move, apparently she didn’t like the idea. It (the criminal case) is still pending, but it’s going to be exonerated, I’m sure.”
He said he did have a camera trained on her house, but that it was at her request so they could monitor her teenage son while she was at Decker’s home.
“I had cameras in a box and she said, ‘You think you could set those up and keep an eye on my son when I’m over here so he don’t do anything crazy over there?’ ” Decker said.
The 1982 case that landed Decker in prison involved an attempt to retrieve a stolen motorcycle.
“It was my dad and my brother and my best friend,” Decker said. “These so-called friends of ours stole a motorcycle that belonged to my brother and we went and got it back, took the law into our own hands, they said.”
According to the court records, the crimes involved kidnapping and beating one man, beating another and stealing a watch from a third. One man was disfigured when a sewn-in hairpiece was ripped from his scalp, according to police reports.
The younger Deckers and their friend were convicted of kidnapping and aggravated battery. The father was convicted of aggravated battery and aggravated assault. All four served prison time.
“Paid a big price for it and learned from my mistakes,” Decker said. “It was my first offense when I was 19 years old and I ain’t had nothing since then.”
Decker said he was unaware that another former girlfriend had filed for and was granted a protective order against him in 2006. That woman alleged that he had held her down and kicked her when she told him their relationship was over.
Another court record showed Decker pleaded no contest in 2000 to a misdemeanor charge of battery/domestic violence against a different former girlfriend.
The charge sheet said he caused her bodily harm “by slapping and punching her to the face causing swelling, redness and bleeding to the mouth.”
Decker was sentenced to six months in jail and a $500 fine. The sentence was suspended in favor of a one-year probation term, records show.
He denied he had ever hit a woman.