Basalt 7-Eleven robber to serve 10 years

Scott Condon
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

BASALT – A Basalt man was sentenced to 10 years in state prison last week for robbing the Basalt 7-Eleven while the manager was working alone early one morning last December.

Edras Balvino Gonzales-Osorto, 25, pleaded guilty to aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon. A misdemeanor theft charge was dropped as part of a plea agreement, said 5th Judicial District Attorney Mark Hurlbert.

Gonzales-Osorto faced a possible range of four to 16 years for the felony conviction. Hurlbert said he was satisfied with the 10-year sentence.

Police said Gonzales-Osorto entered the convenience store at 12:30 a.m. on Dec. 19, bought a pack of cigarettes then left. He returned a short time later and said he needed a can of pop. The manager told investigators that Gonzales-Osorto grabbed her as she walked behind the sales counter and put a knife to her side. He obtained cash from the drawer and attempted to flee out the store’s back door.

The manager told him she couldn’t open that door, so he started leading her to the front door. She broke his grip, locked herself in the store’s bathroom and called 911 on her cell phone.

Gonzales-Osorto fled before officers arrived a short time later. The manager was unharmed but shaken up. Basalt police released a video image and description of the suspect within a week after the incident. That didn’t produce any leads, but there was a lucky break on New Year’s Eve.

The victim of the robbery was attending a New Year’s Eve party at the Malibu restaurant in El Jebel when she spotted the man she thought robbed her. She had a friend call 911. Gonzales-Osorto had gotten into an altercation at the bar and was removed. He was trying to talk his way back in when the victim spotted him and was still trying to do so when officers from Basalt and Eagle County arrived.

Basalt Sgt. Stu Curry, who was on duty that night, had investigated the robbery. Like the victim, he thought Gonzales-Osorto matched the video image of the robbery suspect.

Gonzales-Osorto initially denied involvement, then confessed, police said. Curry reported at the time that Gonzales-Osorto said he was “really drunk” at the time of the robbery and couldn’t explain his actions.

Gonzales-Osorto is from Honduras, according to Basalt police. The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement investigated and will likely try to get an order to deport him after his sentence is served, Hurlbert said.