Carbondale assault case stagnates |

Carbondale assault case stagnates

John Gardner
Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” A 17-year-old boy charged in connection with an assault and robbery of two women in Carbondale on Jan. 29 remains in custody at the Grand Mesa Youth Detention Center in Grand Junction.

His mother told Garfield County Court Judge Paul Metzger Wednesday that she doesn’t have a lot of time to help.

She has to work and has another child to take care of and that is why she has not found an attorney or public defender to represent her son.

“I warned him about being in jail, and in court,” she told Judge Metzger.

“Now that he is in big, big trouble, he is asking for me to help.”

The juvenile is charged with robbery by the use of force, two counts of conspiracy to commit robbery, and allegations of criminal attempt to commit robbery. He also has five additional municipal court cases pending.

Metzger ordered the boy to two weeks in detention at his arraignment hearing on Feb. 25 in the assault case, with the chance of being released to monitored home detention at that time. However, the boy’s mother said that she and her husband were in the process of moving to North Carolina and they did not have the required telephone line at their Carbondale residence for the home detention device and no one would be around to watch him.

The mother asked the court, on Wednesday, if her son could be released to a family friend who has agreed to watch over him and would allow him to be on electronic home detention at their home. However, Assistant District Attorney Tony Hershey argued that that was not an appropriate alternative and that the boy is her responsibility, not a family friend.

Hershey requested that the court assign a legal guardian who will be responsible for the defendant.

“He is your son. He’s 17. That is why I asked for a guardian in this case,” Hershey said.

Metzger denied the request for home detention. The boy will remain in custody at the Grand Junction detention facility at least until his next court date on April 8.

The mother told Metzger that she has been out of state, since her son’s last court date. She said that is why she was unable to get an attorney or speak with the public defender about the case.

Hershey again made the point for a guardian to be appointed.

“(The boy) can’t call an attorney from detention,” Hershey said. “It’s up to his parent.”

One of the juvenile female suspects charged in connection with the Carbondale assault, was released from detention and ordered on monitored home detention.

However, Metzger was hesitant to release her because, he said, she has not shown an ability to comply with the court’s orders.

“It would not take much of a violation to get sent back to detention,” Metzger warned.

The girl was arrested, one week after her first court appearance on Feb. 25 in the assault case, for allegedly obstructing and resisting arrest. She was on intensive supervised probation at the time and was sent to youth detention for violation of probation, where she has been since the second incident.

Hershey didn’t think releasing her was a good idea but space at the facility is limited and YouthZone is already exceeding their five available beds.

“She didn’t have much success last time, maybe she will this time,” Hershey said.

The girl is charged with allegations of third-degree assault and two counts of conspiracy to commit third-degree assault among other charges.

Metzger placed mandatory protection orders for each of the defendants that stipulated they were not to have contact with each other or the victim.

However, Hershey said that representatives of YouthZone have reported that this girl has violated the court order of no contact by having written letters to some of the other defendants from the detention center.

Metzger reiterated that the order is still in place and that she is not to have any contact with the other defendants.

Seven teens were charged in connection with the assault.

Three girls are accused of allegedly attacking two women, ages 26 and 24, on Jan. 29 as the victims walked toward downtown Carbondale.

Contact John Gardner: 384-9114

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