Aspen man arrested for domestic violence again
A 39-year-old Aspen man sentenced last month for choking a relative was arrested Friday for allegedly grabbing his girlfriend by the neck on a downtown street, according to court documents.
A friend of the girlfriend’s told police that Leandro Vincent Contreras and the 21-year-old woman had been in a “huge fight” all night long and he had been “really nasty” toward her, according to a police report filed in District Court in Aspen.
The girlfriend and two of her friends left the residence Friday to get away from him and “go out on the town,” the report states. The friend said Contreras sent his girlfriend text messages while they were out saying he was going to “punch her in the face,” that he hated her and that he’d thrown all her belongings out of the house, according to the report.
The friend said they were walking down the street when Contreras showed up “out of the blue” and “ripped (his girlfriend) off the sidewalk” and “put her against the car,” the report states.
“(The friend) said Contreras was screaming at (his girlfriend),” according to the police report.
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The friend said Contreras grabbed his girlfriend by the neck, though the girlfriend denied that and said he just grabbed her arm, the report states. An Aspen police officer who responded reported being able to see “a very visible red mark on the left side of her neck that traveled up toward her left ear,” the report states.
The woman said she “gets red when she freaks out,” though Officer Dan Davis didn’t believe her.
“This red mark was very clearly not from hives or anything psychological,” Davis wrote in his report. “It was evident it was made from something grabbing her neck violently and squeezing hard.”
The girlfriend’s friend “was in disbelief” at the explanation for the red mark given to police by the girlfriend, the report states. The officer pulled her aside because the look on her face made him assume “(Contreras’ girlfriend) was lying,” the report states.
“I saw (Contreras) grab her by the neck,” the friend told Davis.
Contreras, who owns The Gym at Aspen, left the scene before police arrived and was later arrested and charged with assault and domestic violence.
Contreras pleaded guilty in late May to felony menacing, possession of steroids and assault in connection with two domestic violence incidents that occurred in 2015. In court in May, Contreras admitted to using his hands as a deadly weapon, and a prosecutor said he put his hand around the relative’s neck in a “choking incident.”
Contreras could have faced between two and 6 ½ years in prison for the pleas, though Deputy District Attorney Andrea Bryan agreed to recommend only probation. Bryan allowed Contreras to receive a two-year deferred sentence for the felony menacing count, meaning the charge would have been wiped from his record if he’d stayed out of trouble for two years.
Contreras also was arrested in 2013 for shaking a city parking officer and throwing him to the ground. He was arrested again in 2014 for steering his truck toward another parking officer who’d written him a ticket 10 minutes before.
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Basalt is ‘living in two worlds’ when it comes to indoor mask requirements. Businesses in the east and south sides of town must follow Pitkin County’s mask requirement. The majority of businesses are in Eagle County, where there is no mandate.