Case continued for Rifle resident accused of attacking off-duty corrections officer
A court case for a Rifle man accused of attacking a jogger in New Castle has been continued to October.
Lonnie Nielsen, 40, is charged with first-degree attempted murder, assault and obstruction of a peace officer. His bond was set at $1 million.
9th Judicial District Court Judge John Neiley said during Nielsen’s scheduled appearance Thursday the case has been continued to allow more time for an ongoing discovery. Discovery is the process of exchanging information and evidence between defending and prosecuting parties.
“We’re giving them more time to accomplish gathering records,” Neiley said.
Nielsen was arrested at 12:35 p.m. June 5 after being accused of striking a Garfield County Corrections security guard in the head with a crowbar.
Court documents state that Nielsen is a former prison inmate of 20 years. He was serving a sentence for murder and was out on parole.
Over time, Nielsen worked closely with the jogger he allegedly struck. The corrections security officer builds resumes, helps clients find jobs and tries to set them up for success, court documents state.
Nielsen was reported to have cased out where his former case worker likes to recreate. He parked a half mile away from Rollie Gordon Park and waited for the jogger to come.
It was then he struck the jogger with the crowbar and told her, “I could kill you right now if I wanted to,” court documents state.
Nielsen then began to get on his own knees, press a knife he was also holding to his neck and threaten to kill himself. The jogger, who was still conscious, attempted to convince Nielsen not to commit suicide. She then escaped Nielsen by convincing him to get bottled water from his car.
After going back home and having her husband call 911, Nielsen led a responding New Castle police officer on a short foot pursuit before his arrest.
He was then taken to Grand River hospital in Rifle before being booked into Garfield County Jail.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.
Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.
Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.