Garfield County Crime Briefs: Suspected hotel assault, Parachute car chase
Shortly after 2 a.m. Jan. 1, a Hotel Glenwood Springs guest called police and reported hearing a woman screaming in one of the rooms.
Officers interviewed the suspect, 24, who stated that he and his girlfriend, 18, had a fight about “past relationship issues” that got out of hand when she tried to leave the room.
The suspect said he grabbed hold of his girlfriend to keep her from leaving, and that she scratched him on the neck. The girlfriend told police that the suspect got mad when she checked her phone, and moved in as if for a kiss, then bit her lip. She said she was scared, and pushed him away, but he gripped her around her throat, and she scratched him in self-defense.
The suspect had scratches on his neck, but said the woman had not been in any danger. He had a warrant for failing to appear in court in a different Colorado county on unrelated charges. He is being held on charges of second-degree assault and strangulation. Bond was set at $350.
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Parachute car(tel?) chase
Believing she was being chased around Parachute by a drug cartel, a woman allegedly caused one of two collisions with another vehicle, driven by a man who thought the woman was trying to rob him.
The woman and a man in his late 20s told Garfield County Sheriff’s deputies they had been followed Wednesday by a silver car they knew was connected to a cartel that wanted the woman dead. The woman told sheriff’s deputies she was working with TRIDENT drug task force, and they told her to find a safe place, but weren’t able to find somewhere to stay.
At some point the evening of Jan. 2, the resident of a property along County Road 301 in Parachute said he saw the pair’s car come up his driveway. Suspecting they were there “scoping out the place for stuff to steal,” he got into his red pickup truck and followed the two in their SUV.
The man in the SUV called 911, and dispatchers say they heard a woman screaming, and the man telling the woman to slow down.
The SUV, driven by the woman, swerved into the truck at one point while driving into Parachute. She told deputies that the truck had pulled next to her, and she “thought the person in the truck was going to shoot her.” She claims she ducked down in her seat.
The SUV lost control and went over the median into oncoming traffic. The SUV then parked at the Shell Gas Station. The man in the truck followed, and there was a second collision in the parking lot.
According to an eyewitness, the SUV appeared to roll backwards and hit the bumper of the truck. The woman driving in the SUV told deputies that the truck “rammed the back of their car.”
The man in the SUV jumped out of the car and ran toward the truck. An eyewitness told deputies that the man from the SUV had a knife which he dropped as police began to arrive. The driver of the truck locked his door, and told sheriff’s deputies he did not see that the man had a knife.
The woman driving the SUV told deputies she suffered from PTSD and that she does not remember how the side of the truck was damaged. She said she was simply trying to get away, thinking the driver was part of the cartel and trying to kill her.
The woman, age 20, struggled some, according to the affidavit, while being arrested for reckless driving and criminal mischief, a felony. Bail has not been set for the woman, who is still being held in Garfield County Jail.
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GarCo sheriff still on patrol while facilities are closed to public; VIN inspection suspensions extended
The Rifle annex is closed and VIN inspections are suspended through April 17.