Cops: Argument leads to punch, loose teeth
An Old Snowmass man is facing a felony assault charge after an argument about his living situation escalated Sunday morning, according to court documents.
Matthew Gering, 26, told Pitkin County Judge Erin Fernandez-Ely on Tuesday that he thought he was on solid legal ground when he warned his father’s girlfriend he was going to hit her before punching her in the face and causing loose teeth and a cut that required stitches.
Fernandez-Ely ordered Gering held in lieu of a $5,000 bond, though he asked for a personal recognizance bond, which requires no money to be released from jail. When Fernandez-Ely declined the personal recognizance bond, Gering cursed court officials and said his “Asian family” would be coming for revenge.
“That’s all I’m going to say,” Gering said.
“That’s good,” Fernandez-Ely said.
The incident was first reported to Pitkin County sheriff’s deputies at about 11:45 a.m. Sunday, when the 57-year-old victim reported being hit in the face, according to a police report filed in District Court in Aspen.
After deputies arrived, they discovered that the victim “initiated a heated discussion” with Gering and his girlfriend “about the unacceptable living situation (at the residence) where all four people are currently staying,” according to the police report.
“The discussion began over cleanliness and respect but quickly digressed into an argument about who had legal permission to be at the house …” Deputy Levi Borst wrote in the report.
Gering’s girlfriend threatened to call police at that time to report that the victim was in violation of a protection order, which she was not, the report states. A protection order limiting contact exists between Gering’s father and the victim because of a recent unrelated incident, according to court records.
Gering’s girlfriend then took out her cellphone to call 911 and the victim grabbed for the phone, the report states. Gering and his girlfriend also reported that the victim grabbed Gering’s girlfriend by her shirt.
Gering then stepped between the two women and pushed the victim backward, according to the report. The argument continued and Gering warned the victim he’d hit her before punching her in the face, the report states.
Gering then stepped toward his father, who felt threatened and punched his son in the face, which stopped the altercation, according to the report.
A doctor at Aspen Valley Hospital reported that the victim needed eight stitches to repair her upper lip and had three chipped or loose teeth, the report states.
“I guess I don’t know my own strength,” Gering later told deputies, according to the report.
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With a response rate to the 2020 Census survey below 40%, Pitkin County’s population appears to have been undercounted by at least 850 people.