Aspen man crashes moped, injures passenger | AspenTimes.com

Aspen man crashes moped, injures passenger

A local man with an extensive criminal history involving alcohol and theft was arrested again Saturday for drunken driving after crashing his moped and seriously injuring his passenger, according to court documents.

Benjamin Levy, 30, was charged with felony vehicular assault, among other charges, because the 49-year-old woman riding on the back of his scooter "had a severe laceration on her left leg" and a broken left wrist after the crash east of Aspen, according to an affidavit filed in Pitkin County District Court.

A doctor at Aspen Valley Hospital told a Colorado State patrolman that Levy "has a history of coming into the hospital under the influence," while nurses said they could smell alcohol on Levy's breath. Levy's blood draw at the hospital showed an alcohol content of 0.086 and also was positive for marijuana, the affidavit states.

"I attempted to speak with Mr. Levy who immediately pretended to be asleep when I asked him questions," according to the affidavit. "I attempted to ask Mr. Levy questions and he would just groan and pretend to be asleep."

The 49-year-old woman said she'd been living in the same apartment as Levy and told police he'd been driving the scooter while she was on the back, the affidavit states.

"(She) said that she and Mr. Levy were on the way to a place in Aspen to play pool and that he had just purchased the scooter," according to the affidavit. "She said that Mr. Levy wanted to go for a ride on the scooter and continued past their destination east of town.

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"She said they came around a corner too fast and were unable to keep the scooter on the road and eventually crashed."

The scooter went off the right side of Highway 82, traveled for another 76 feet before rolling and ejecting Levy and the passenger, the affidavit states.

In addition to the vehicular assault charge, Levy was charged Saturday with DUI, careless driving, driving without insurance, driving with a suspended license and not wearing eye protection on a scooter.

Levy has been arrested repeatedly since 2013, when he fired a gun inside his Woody Creek apartment and the bullet entered his neighbor's apartment. No one was injured in that incident, though Levy also was charged with DUI later that same day. Levy's last arrest occurred in May, when an AVH nurse called police to report that he left the emergency room under the influence of narcotics after being warned not to drive. He was charged with DUI in that case.

The affidavit from Saturday states that Levy has two previous DUI convictions. However, court documents from his arrest in May indicate he had three previous DUI convictions and that the May arrest was his fourth, which is a felony. It was unclear Tuesday which is accurate.

jauslander@aspentimes.com

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