Man arrested for allegedly running wife off road east of Basalt

Scott Condon
The Aspen Times
The driver of the Dodge pick-up allegedly tried to run his wife off the road while she was driving down Fryingpan Road in an Audi sedan Wednesday morning. Both vehicles nearly landed in the Fryingpan River at mile marker 10 east of Basalt.
Basalt Fire Department/courtesy photo |

Two vehicles nearly plunged into the Fryingpan River 10 miles east of Basalt on Wednesday morning after a man allegedly ran his wife off the road, according to the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office.

Forrest Gillard, 29, of Meredith, was arrested by an Eagle County deputy sheriff for reckless endangerment and harassment, both misdemeanors, according to Undersheriff Mike McWilliam.

Gillard was being held without bond because the incident allegedly involved domestic violence. That also can enhance a sentence if Gillard is convicted, McWilliam said.

The vehicles were traveling west, or downvalley, on Frying Pan Road on Wednesday.

“At mile 10, we believe he intentionally tried to run his wife off the road,” McWilliam said. No information was available on what triggered the incident.

Firefighters and law enforcement officials were paged to the site at 9:34 a.m. The initial report came in as two vehicles in the Fryingpan River. First responders found the vehicles on a steep riverbank close to the river but not in the water.

Neither driver was injured. The woman got out of an Audi sedan, climbed a short distance to the road and caught a ride to Basalt. She reported to authorities that her husband ran her off the road. She was checked for injuries at the Basalt Police Department but wasn’t taken to the hospital, according to Basalt Fire Department Deputy Chief Pete Bradshaw.

Gillard’s Dodge pick-up ended up on its left side, right behind the Audi and just a few feet from the water. He and a dog were able to get out of the vehicle. Gillard was checked at the scene but not transported to the hospital, Bradshaw said. The site of the crash was in Eagle County. Meredith is in Pitkin County. A deputy arrested Gillard in Meredith at about 1 p.m., McWilliam said.

Basalt police officers responded to the accident scene and assisted Eagle County. The Colorado State Patrol also assisted but deferred to Eagle County for the investigation because the incident was an “intentional act,” a spokesman said.


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