Man arrested for allegedly stealing vehicle, leaving it in the roundabout
Aspen Times Staff Writer
A man was arrested Monday afternoon after allegedly stealing a vehicle from an Aspen Parks Department employee and leaving it in the Aspen roundabout.
Ramon Quintero-Martinez, 24, is charged with aggravated motor vehicle theft. He was being held in the Pitkin County Jail on $2,500 bond.
The employee told police he had seen several men sitting in a car near the parks department when he returned to work, with one man walking toward the car, presumably after turning in an application with the department. Police later tracked down the small white car at The Basalt Store and took the four men in the car to the Basalt police station for questioning.
According to the affidavit, three of the four men questioned individually told police they had driven to Aspen from Glenwood Springs earlier that day. They stopped at the parks department so one of the men could change his phone number on an application. While the driver was in the office, Quintero-Martinez left the car saying he was going to use the bathroom, but never came back.
The three others then drove off and found Quintero-Martinez in the roundabout, allegedly standing near a Jeep Cherokee. The men picked up the suspect and drove to Basalt.
One of the three men in the car told police they did not know anything was wrong until they were stopped by police and Quintero-Martinez said something to the effect of, “I tried to take a car and got caught.”
Police said they found other evidence that two other parks department trucks may have been entered by Quintero-Martinez. Quintero-Martinez allegedly told police the theft was “easy” because the car keys were in the ignition, although he said the owner of the car chased him and yelled as he left the parking lot.
According to police, he said he wanted to drive the vehicle home, and when he drove past his friends in the small white car they “looked surprised.”
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