Long rap sheet for suspect in recent Glenwood Springs domestic violence incident | PostIndependent.com

Long rap sheet for suspect in recent Glenwood Springs domestic violence incident

Ruiz-Alvarado: ‘I just want to plead guilty to all of them’

An arrest last week on menacing and drug charges stemming from a domestic violence incident at the Glenwood Green Apartments wasn’t Mario Ruiz-Alvarado’s first run-in with the police and the criminal courts.

At this point, with pleas entered in several other pending felony cases, Ruiz-Alvarado, 27, told the magistrate during a Monday advisement hearing on the new charges that he just wants to be done with it all and go to prison.

“I just want to plead guilty to all of them,” Ruiz-Alvarado said during the video court hearing from the Garfield County Jail, where he’s now on a no-bond hold issued over the weekend due to the mounting criminal cases against him.

Ruiz-Alvarado was free on $11,000 bond from an earlier case when the new allegations arose out of a domestic disturbance March 25. He now faces charges including felony menacing, violation of a criminal protection order, obstructing a peace officer and possession of a controlled substance.

Mario Ruiz-Alvarado
Garfield County Detention Center booking photo

According to an arrest affidavit filed with the court after the arrest, Ruiz-Alvarado was trying to convince the victim — with whom he was not to have contact with by court order — to let him into her apartment on Flat Top View Road about 11 a.m. that day.

A Glenwood Springs Police officer arrived and spoke with the victim, who told the officer that Ruiz-Alvarado “was at her door asking to come in, and he said he had a gun and if the cops come he was going to make them shoot him,” the affidavit states.

“The victim had also stated Mario had sent her messages from his father’s phone (because he does not have his own phone) … saying he was coming and going to knock her door down and kill her,” the affidavit states.

The officer was advised by a witness that they had seen a man matching the description of Ruiz-Alvarado fleeing south to the Wulfsohn Mountain Park area prior to the officer’s arrival.

Additional officers arrived and started to search the area, and noticed the suspect come out of the woods.

“Officers verbally told Mario to come down from the area, and he turned and fled,” according to the affidavit.

As officers ran after the suspect, he reportedly displayed knives and made movements like he was handling a firearm, police said.

“(Ruiz-Alvarado) verbally engaged with officers, saying that we will need to kill him and he was not going to jail,” according to the officer’s affidavit.

Police officers continued to ask the suspect to surrender, but ultimately had to use a taser and bean bag shotgun to take him into custody.

Ruiz-Alvarado did not have a gun, but was in possession of two knives. A search at the jail during booking also turned up two 15 mg Temazepam pills, according to the affidavit.

Deputy District Attorney Tony Hershey said during the Monday advisement hearing that Ruiz-Alvarado was already facing likely prison time for several felony charges he recently pleaded guilty to.

Among them was a second-degree burglary charge from last year when Ruiz-Alvarado admitted to breaking into the 19th Street Diner. He also recently pleaded guilty to two separate charges of possession of a weapon by a previous offender, a class 4 felony, one dating from 2018 and another from earlier this year.

Ruiz-Alvarado was already facing between four and 12 years in prison in the earlier cases, with a May 25 sentencing date, Deputy District Attorney Zac Parsons said.

On Monday, Magistrate Susan Ryan advised Ruiz-Alvarado of the new charges, which carry another possible three years or more of prison time.

Ruiz-Alvarado was already well-known to local law enforcement going back several years.

In late 2015, Ruiz-Alvarado was also convicted at trial by a jury for felony menacing and possession of a firearm by a previous felon. That case involved a May 2014 incident in which Ruiz-Alvarado discharged a handgun in the parking lot at the Dairy Queen restaurant in West Glenwood where he worked at the time.

He was sentenced to 90 days in the county jail, even though the District Attorney’s Office at the time argued for a sentence to the Department of Corrections, given Ruiz-Alvarado’s history of non-compliance with court orders.

The shooting incident, which took place during a confrontation in the parking lot, could easily have been deadly, but for poor aim, the deputy district attorney in that case argued during a December 2015 sentencing hearing.

Prior to that, Ruiz-Alvarado was arrested at age 19 in 2012 as part of a large Two Rivers Drug Enforcement Team operation in Carbondale. A conviction in that case resulted in Ruiz-Alvarado not being permitted to possess firearms.

Ruiz-Alvarado is due back in court April 15 for arraignment on the latest charges.


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.