Judge to rule in Aspen bomb-threat case
The Aspen Times
Aspen CO Colorado
ASPEN – A District Court judge will decide, after listening to nearly 90 minutes of testimony at a preliminary hearing Monday, whether to bind over a felony bomb-threat count against a Glenwood Springs man.
Judge Gail Nichols ruled there is enough probable cause for Asa Robinson, 30, to stand trial for the alleged second-degree assault of Aspen Police Officer Greggory Cole. Cole detained Robinson for questioning on the night of Nov. 22, when police said they had received a phone call from a man who said a bomb was inside the Belly Up Aspen nightclub.
Cole testified that Robinson struck him on the head as he was being detained. If convicted of the charge, Robinson faces a mandatory four years in state prison.
Nichols said she will rule before Robinson’s next appearance in Pitkin County District Court, scheduled March 19, as to whether he should be bound over for trial on the felony charges of false reporting of an explosive and assault on a police officer while in custody.
She hinted that she probably will uphold the bomb charge, though she was not ready to immediately rule on it Monday because of hearsay concerns.
“Most likely I will bind it over,” she said.
As for the assault on a police officer in custody, the question is whether Robinson actually was in custody when he allegedly hit Cole. Cole had initially tried to detain him for questioning and then attempted to handcuff him before a scuffle between the two ensued.
Belly Up was forced to evacuate its sold-out crowd, composed of some 450 patrons, because of the threat. But the crowd was let back in after police found no signs of a bomb at the concert venue, where the band Zeds Dead was the headline act.
Police said that they traced the cellphone number from which the call was made to Robinson’s name. Police also said Robinson initially was denied entry into Belly Up because it was sold out. When the patrons were told they could return to the club because there was no apparent threat of a bomb, Robinson was in line, where Cole spotted him.
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