Man busted for sleeping at Casa Tua
A judge warned an Aspen transient Wednesday to keep his sleeping habits off the radars of local police.
Nicholas Olson, 23, appeared in Aspen Municipal court where he pleaded guilty to trespassing charges related to a May 21 incident in which police found him and another person crashed out in the stairwell of the private Casa Tua restaurant. Vomit also was found nearby, said City Attorney Jim True.
Olson told Judge Brooke Peterson it was an isolated incident and that he had consumed “quite a bit” of alcohol.
“I was not planning to sleep there at all,” he said. “I had my own campsite on the mountain.”
Olson said he usually camps out, and he’s been doing it in the Aspen area for about 21/2 years.
“What do you do when you’re not camping?” the judge asked him. “How do you support yourself?”
“I have foodstamps and friends, I guess,” he told the judge.
Olson said he had planned to crash at a friend’s place that night, but his friend lost his keys and wallet. That led them to downtown Aspen, where they found Casa Tua.
True said Olson has had a number of contacts with police “for sleeping in areas where he’s not supposed to be sleeping.”
But Olson said police have never actually cited him.
“If I did sleep somewhere where I wasn’t supposed to be, I would not get caught,” he said.
Peterson frowned at that statement and gave Olson a six-month deferred judgment, 10 hours of public service and a $150 probation fee.
“I’m giving you a choice to make amends for this, and the fact that you choose the lifestyle you choose to live, fine, that’s your choice,” the judge said. “But you cannot do it in violation of the laws in the city of Aspen.”
The other man cited, Justin Kenneth Casper, 30, missed his scheduled court appearance, prompting Peterson to enter a warrant for his arrest.
It was not clear which defendant vomited in the stairwell. Peterson said it didn’t matter.
“Apparently one of you two, I don’t know which one, and I don’t care to know, vomited in the stairwell,” the judge said.
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