Toby Aaron Gallegos pleads guilty in Glenwood Springs 2010 stabbling | PostIndependent.com
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Toby Aaron Gallegos pleads guilty in Glenwood Springs 2010 stabbling

John Colson
Post Independent Staff

GLENWOOD SPRINGS — After more than two and a half years of false starts and delayed trials, Toby Aaron Gallegos this week pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of second degree assault over accusations that he stabbed his buddy in a Sept. 26, 2010, knife fight in a Glenwood Springs alleyway.

Gallegos, 29, was facing attempted murder charges over accusations that he stabbed and seriously wounded another man in the 800 block of the alleyway between Grand and Colorado avenues.

As part of the plea bargain announced in court on May 16, he also pleaded guilty to a charge of possession of a weapon by a convicted felon over a separate 2009 incident.

The guilty pleas came about a month after the latest trial in the 2010 case — scheduled for early April — was postponed, presumably while prosecutors and defense attorney Garth McCarty worked out the details of the plea bargain.

All told, Gallegos was set for trial three different times, twice in 2012 and once this year.

The second trial was postponed due to scheduling complications that arose after Gallegos was arrested in Nevada in August, 2012, while out on bond awaiting trial in the local courts.

Gallegos reportedly was arrested in Nevada following a traffic stop and a search that revealed weapons in his possession, which was a violation of his probation from an earlier case.

Federal authorities have been reluctant to relinquish custody to the Ninth Judicial District, according to statements made in several court hearings, although the reason for that reluctance was not mentioned.

In court on May 16, McCarty and prosecutor Andrea Bryan agreed that Gallegos should remain in the Garfield County Jail until his sentencing hearing, scheduled for July 16, in order to provide sufficient time for a pre-sentence investigation to be conducted by judicial officials.

Bryan said federal authorities already had agreed to that plan.

McCarty and Bryan both indicated that the sentencing hearing could take some time, since McCarty is planning to call three witnesses on Gallegos’ behalf.

Bryan said she was not certain whether either the victim in the case, or members of his family, would testify at the sentencing.

Gallegos is facing up to 16 years in prison under the terms of the plea bargain, although he could be sentenced to as many as 32 years in prison if District Judge Denise Lynch rules that the case involves extenuating circumstances that would justify a harsher sentence.

jcoloson@postindependent.com


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