Snowmass ring thief ordered to pay $9K in restitution | AspenTimes.com

Snowmass ring thief ordered to pay $9K in restitution

A district judge Monday sentenced a Snowmass Village man to concurrent two- and three-year terms to supervised probation for stealing his former roommate’s jewelry.

Kenneth K. Carvalho, 40, also was sentenced to 64 days in jail, time he already served, by Pitkin County District Judge Gail Nichols.

Carvalho also must pay $9,000 in restitution, with monthly payments of $500, to his estranged roommate.

“First and foremost, no apology would be enough for what I’ve done,” Carvalho told the court. “I’ve lost a friend in this whole ordeal, yet I made a stupid mistake and this is what it’s cost.”

Local authorities had been looking for Carvalho ever since Nichols signed a Snowmass Village Police Department arrest warrant in December 2013. Carvalho was wanted for stealing two of his Snowmass roommate’s diamond rings, valued at $17,000 and $500.

On Dec. 31, Athens-Clarke County (Georgia) authorities arrested him in Athens, and he was extradited to Pitkin County on a felony theft charge.

Carvalho sold a diamond from the more valuable ring for $1,500 to a local consignor. But the remaining two diamonds of the platinum ring haven’t been accounted for, said Aspen lawyer Jeff Wertz, who spoke to the court on behalf of the victim.

“The thief pried that diamond out of the ring, took it to a pawn shop and got paid chump change; only $1,500,” he said. “What happened to the ring and the other two stones?” Wertz also noted that the $500 ring remains gone.

Wertz said the victim wants no contact with Carvalho.

The victim also spoke.

“Besides betraying my trust, he has caused me to have a great deal of anxiety, and I no longer feel safe in my community,” she said.

Carvalho attributed his longtime abuse of alcohol and drugs to his thefts. He said he has more than 500 days of clean time under his belt, and he’s living with a family in Aspen.

“My father was a Baptist minister for 38 years, and for 38 years, I ran from God,” he said.

In another sentencing hearing Monday, Snowmass Village resident Raymond J. Piche copped a plea for stealing a shuttle bus on Nov. 26 and driving it while he was drunk.

“First of all, I’d like to apologize for my actions,” he told the judge. “I served my country, I was honorably discharged and I know what I did was wrong. I’m sorry.”

Piche said he hasn’t had a sip of liquor since the incident and he’s trying hard to avoid booze. This was his fifth DUI.

As a result, the judge gave him the mandatory minimum 60-day term in county jail, where he’ll be able to leave for work release. He also will serve two years of supervised probation and attend DUI Court.

“I expect you to be a leader in (DUI Court),” Nichols said.

Offenders in DUI Court must attend sessions every two weeks, attend group therapy once a week, undergo random alcohol tests and be on call every day.

“The advantage is when you have a relapse, we put you in jail for a very short time,” the judge said. “The advantage is you don’t get a complaint alleging violation of probation. The disadvantage is you have to do all of this stuff.”

Nichols expressed confidence in Piche, but warned him that his history as a binge drinker is a problem.

“You’re admitting you have an issue, which needs to be addressed,” she said. “Obviously, you have a lot of willpower and a lot of good things about you. … But there’s one thing that keeps cropping up and getting in your way.”

rcarroll@aspentimes.com


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