Breaking News: Aspen bomb suspect found dead |

Breaking News: Aspen bomb suspect found dead

Aspen Times Staff Report
Aspen, CO Colorado
Contributed photoJim Blanning, the suspect in Wednesday's bomb threats at banks around Aspen, has been found dead, police said early Thursday.

ASPEN ” Aspen bomb threat suspect Jim Blanning has been found dead, east of town, according to Aspen police.

Blanning, 71, was being sought in connection with two bomb threats at Aspen banks on Wednesday that forced authorities to evacuate a 16-block area, effectively shutting down the resort on New Year’s Eve.

A statement issued early Thursday by police indicated Blanning is dead. The press release did not offer any other details regarding his death, but a 10 a.m. press conference has been scheduled at the Pitkin County Courthouse, a change in venue from the originally announced locale ” the county library.

The evacuation order was lifted after authorities deemed the downtown safe at about 4 a.m. Thursday, after they secured three crime scenes during the night.

Detonations heard around town late Wednesday and in the wee hours of Thursday were not explosions, but rather the suspected bombs being rendered safe by bomb technicians using a high-pressure water cannon, police said.

Check back at for further details after the press conference.

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