Alleged hostage-taker facing slew of felonies
A 30-year-old Colorado Springs resident suspected of holding three men at gunpoint last month on Lincoln Creek Road was charged late last week with two counts of attempted murder and 12 other felonies, according to court documents.
Brolin McConnell appeared in Aspen District Court on Monday with his lawyer, Lawson Wills, but made no statements. He is next scheduled to appear in court Sept. 9.
McConnell is suspected of pulling two handguns July 27 on three men he didn’t know who were in the Lincoln Creek area for recreation purposes, according to police. The alleged hostages told law enforcement that he repeatedly threatened to shoot them in the head while making bizarre statements about drones, microphones and the FBI, police said.
Despite the threats, the alleged hostages were all able to run away from him when McConnell became distracted, according to police, and Pitkin County sheriff’s deputies and an Aspen police officer arrested him without incident.
The Aspen police officer later reported seeing a marijuana vaporizer next to McConnell’s truck, though he was unsure if McConnell’s alleged actions could be attributed to illegal drugs or mental-health issues, according to a police report.
A Basalt police officer who transported McConnell from Lincoln Creek Road to the Pitkin County Jail said he believed “McConnell was on some type of drug such as methamphetamine” because he was gnashing his teeth, the report states.
To try to figure out if McConnell was in the throes of a methamphetamine binge or having a mental breakdown, deputies took samples of his blood, according to police reports. The results of tests done on the blood are not yet available, said Aspen prosecutor Andrea Bryan, though she noted she wouldn’t be able to release the results publicly even if they were ready.
Don Bird, Pitkin County Jail administrator, said Monday that McConnell has been “very easy to manage” while in the jail for the past three weeks.
“He’s not acting out in any bizarre fashion,” Bird said. “Once he got used to being in there — he’s just very normal-acting. He’s adapted well to the routine.”
Wills, his lawyer, declined to comment on any aspect of the case after Monday’s hearing.
On Friday, Bryan filed numerous other charges against McConnell, including two counts of first-degree attempted murder, two counts of attempted first degree kidnapping and nine counts of felony menacing. He also was previously charged with first degree kidnapping and misdemeanor prohibited use of a weapon.
It was unclear Monday exactly how long McConnell faces in prison if convicted of all charges.
However, Bryan said during his advisement late last month that he faces between 16 and 48 years behind bars on the first-degree kidnapping charge alone. The kidnapping sentence will require minimum mandatory prison time of 16 years if he’s convicted of the charge, she said.
He also faces up to 48 years in prison on each of the two attempted murder charges, Bryan said Monday.
McConnell is being held at the jail in lieu of a $500,000 cash-only bond.
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