Aspen campus temporarily locked out after nearby incident |

Aspen campus temporarily locked out after nearby incident

Karl Herchenroeder
The Aspen Times

Police apprehended a man they believed to be suicidal Friday morning, prompting a lockout at the Aspen School District campus.

Just before 7 a.m., officials began receiving 911 calls from a distressed man, stating that he was armed and anticipating confrontation with law enforcement, according to a statement from the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office. The man said he was at several locations, and officials from the Aspen Police Department and the Sheriff’s Office began a search around Aspen and in unincorporated portions of Pitkin County.

Authorities located the 24-year-old man, a Roaring Fork Valley resident whose name was not immediately available, around 8 a.m. about two miles up Maroon Creek Road. When officers and deputies reached the man, he drove farther up Maroon Creek Road in a Subaru Impreza.

The Aspen School District campus, which was locked out around 8:15 a.m., is about half a mile from where the incident occurred. During a lockout, no one is allowed to enter or exit any campus buildings. Classes continued as normal during the lockout, which ended around 8:30 a.m.

Attempts to communicate with the man were unsuccessful, and after several minutes of his refusal to comply, officers used beanbag rounds to subdue and take him into custody. No firearms were found at the scene, but officials did discover a knife.

The man was transported to Aspen Valley Hospital with minor injuries. Pitkin County Undersheriff Ron Ryan said they still are investigating to determine if drugs or alcohol were involved.

Sheriff Joe DiSalvo said that for now, the incident is being treated as a mental-health issue and it is unlikely that criminal charges will be filed.

Thirteen officers from the Aspen Police Department, Basalt Police Department, Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office and Snowmass Village Police Department as well as members of Aspen Ambulance participated in the incident.

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