Former pro ball player is Aspen’s new police officer |

Former pro ball player is Aspen’s new police officer

John Colson

There’s a new cop on the beat in Aspen, a former professional baseball player who says he likes the “vibe” he gets from working for the Aspen Police Department.

Jeremiah Tipton, 24, has just begun his field training officer program, in which he learns the local ropes under the tutelage of an experienced cop – in this case, officer Brian Heeney.

Tipton lives in Carbondale with his wife, Angie, although he said they are hoping to move to a new location “as close to Aspen as we can get.”

Tipton said he was born in Illinois, but his family moved to Las Vegas when he was 10, and that’s where he calls home.

“It was a lot of fun,” he said. “There’s a real town there,” he added, noting that the city has grown to a population of 1.5 million in the “metropolitan area.”

He grew up playing baseball on his high school and college teams (the University of Northern Las Vegas), but he broke his arm in a “freak accident” during a college game that interrupted his career.

But two days after he got married, on June 24, 1999, he got a call from the Evansville Otters, an A league team, so back to the ball game he went.

“It’s fun, and it’s easy, and you can sleep ’til noon every day,” he said of his brief stint as a pro player. “But the money wasn’t real good.”

Tipton’s mother and grandfather were both in law enforcement, he said, so it was something of a natural decision for him to choose when it was time “to get a real job.”

So he and his wife, a Colorado native, moved to Fort Collins, where he enrolled in the Colorado Sheriff’s Training Institute. He graduated first in his class and started looking for a job.

He applied with the U.S. Secret Service, he said, adding, “The guy told me I had a good shot, but I needed a job sooner than later.”

He said he had been at the `’tedious” process for several months when, on the same day, he got a call from the city of Wheatridge and a solid job offer from Aspen. He chose Aspen.

“I definitely get a good vibe,” he said of the town. “Everybody’s friendly … everybody has helped me in training, even the chief. He actually made me feel wanted during the hiring process.”

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