Marshal recalls run-in with Appl
GRAND JUNCTION – DeBeque Marshal Gary Foss says he wasn’t wearing his bulletproof vest on the night he and a colleague had Steven Joseph Appl pulled over.He wears it now.”You should be wearing it all the time,” Foss said with a laugh. He’s one of two officers in a department that’s “lucky to get 20 calls in a month.”Appl, 33, died Wednesday night from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot, one day after allegedly wounding Colorado State Trooper Brian Koch with a hail of bullets during a traffic stop in Garfield County.Appl was charged with resisting arrest in a June 17 traffic stop near DeBeque, involving Foss and former marshal Mike Lorsung.Appl failed to appear at a July court date related to the Mesa County arrest. A $500 arrest warrant was active at the time Appl was pulled over by Trooper Koch late Tuesday on Garfield County Road 346.”We hadn’t seen him before in town and he was suspicious,” Foss said of the June 17 stop.According to Foss, Appl was riding a motorcycle through town, stopped at a residence and knocked on a door. Nobody answered. Appl returned to his bike, sat on it for a while, before riding out “real slow … about 10 mph” toward the DeBeque overpass at Interstate 70.Appl was stopped.The officers soon learned Appl had an active drug-related arrest warrant from Utah.”He took off running on us,” Foss said.Foss said the chase went about 300 yards – Foss was on foot, Lorsung caught up with Appl in his patrol car.Appl gave it up.”Mike pulled up next to him with a window rolled down, and had the Taser pointed at him,” Foss said.Authorities Wednesday said Trooper Koch was shot once in the left forearm and twice in the chest – a bulletproof vest stopped the latter two rounds.”If he had a gun, he’d probably have shot us, too,” Foss said.
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