Aspen homeless camp assault leads to felony
On Thursday — the same day a county official said all was well at the intercept lot homeless camp — one camp resident was arrested for assaulting another and breaking his nose, according to court documents.
Aubrey Fuller, 31, was charged with felony second-degree assault because he allegedly caused serious bodily injury to the victim, who suffered the nose injury and had to have stitches in his lip, according to an arrest warrant affidavit filed in Pitkin County District Court.
Emergency dispatchers were notified of the incident at 5:40 p.m. Thursday and met the victim at Aspen Valley Hospital. The victim told Pitkin County sheriff’s deputies he got into a verbal argument with Fuller and Fuller hit him hard twice in the face, the affidavit states.
When deputies later entered the homeless camp — which has been set up by county public health officials as a safe space for area homeless people to live during the pandemic — Fuller stood up and loudly said, “Here we go,” according to the affidavit.
When a deputy asked if he was Fuller, he greeted them with a racial slur and said, “I don’t talk to the f—ing police.”
“I then advised (Fuller) that I was not the police, that I was Deputy Curt Donaldson with the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office,” the affidavit states. “(Fuller) then stated, ‘F— you I don’t talk to the f—ing police.”
When asked why he punched the victim, Fuller said it was because he wouldn’t stop talking to and touching him.
Fuller was arrested without incident. His only identification was a Colorado Department of Corrections identification card, which are issued to prison inmates in lieu of a driver’s license.
A witness to the incident told deputies that the victim had been trying to speak with Fuller and “began tapping (him) on his shoulder,” according to the court document.
“(The witness) stated that when (the victim) turned away, (Fuller) stood up and hit (him) in the head very fast and very hard two times,” according to the affidavit. “(The witness) stated that (Fuller) was a very violent person.”
Fuller was being held Friday at the Pitkin County Jail in lieu of a $5,000 bond.
At a COVID-19 community meeting Thursday afternoon, which ended around the time of the alleged assault, Pitkin County’s Health and Human Services director said the camp was currently housing 17 people at the intercept lot, which is located at the intersection of Brush Creek Road and Highway 82. Public health officials have set up washing stations, bathrooms, bear-proof food containers, propane for heat and a camp host at the lot to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, said Nan Sundeen.
“It’s working really well,” she said Thursday, noting that social distancing and temperature checks were being conducted.
A civil deputy kept her job and was mandated to undergo counseling after Aspen police arrested her in July on suspicion of driving under the influence and reckless driving.