Man drives stolen car at 104 mph east in westbound I-70 through Eagle County |

Man drives stolen car at 104 mph east in westbound I-70 through Eagle County

Randy Wyrick
Vail Daily
Ruben Martinez faces 11 criminal counts after he allegedly stole a car in Aurora and drove through the Vail Valley, west in the eastbound lane of I-70, with illegal narcotics in the stolen car.
Eagle County Sheriff’s Office

EAGLE — A man who was not allowed to have a gun allegedly used a possibly stolen gun to steal a car, put illegal narcotics into his stolen car and drove it west in the eastbound lane of Interstate 70 through Eagle County at more than 104 mph.

Five local law enforcement officers kept Ruben Charles Martinez, 23, from causing any head-on collisions during the early-morning, 17-minute, high-speed chase near Gypsum.

Martinez was spotted at 6:34 a.m. on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17. He sped up and down I-70, crossing back and forth over the median, blowing through exit ramps at 40 mph and leaving the highway by driving the wrong way up entrance ramps, according to police reports.

Martinez finally stopped at 6:51 a.m., pointed east beside the eastbound lane. He climbed halfway out of the white 2008 Chevy Impala, which had been reported stolen, shouting, “Just shoot me! Just shoot me!” according to the arrest affidavit.

The officers — four Eagle County Sheriff’s deputies and an Eagle Police officer — spotted a silver-colored revolver in the middle of the highway. All of the rounds had been fired, the arrest affidavit said.

Nine minutes later, at 7 a.m., Martinez was checked in to the Eagle County jail. His pupils were so dilated that deputies could barely determine his eye color when he was booked into the jail. He also had trouble standing up on his own, the arrest affidavit said.

When asked to sign a consent to have his blood tested for alcohol and drugs, Martinez replied, “Yeah, so I ain’t signing that s—,” the arrest affidavit said.

Deputies found cocaine in his wallet when they booked Martinez. When they searched the stolen car, they found that the back window had been blown out, as well as approximately 60 small plastic baggies. Some contained cocaine, some contained blotters of LSD and another contained amphetamines.

Deputies also discovered that Martinez is a convicted felon, that his drivers license had been revoked for felony motor vehicle crimes and that he was under a restraining order that prohibited him from possessing a gun.

Martinez remains in the Eagle County jail, booked on 11 counts: six felonies and five misdemeanors. He is scheduled to be back in court April 10.

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