Man in Colorado prison identified as alleged Aspen burglar
Aspen police had been looking to arrest Thomas Abbott since September for allegedly twice breaking into the same home on West Hopkins Street a year ago.
Turns out, he’d been sent to prison in July.
Abbott, 49, was transported back to Aspen last week, where he faces two counts of felony burglary, felony criminal mischief and misdemeanor theft, according to an affidavit filed in Pitkin County District Court.
The case against Abbott began Feb. 2, 2017, when the property manager for a home on the 200 block of West Hopkins Avenue called police to report a break-in, according to the affidavit. The man reported finding food still cooking on the stove, a fire burning in the fireplace, “soiled beds,” a broken rear window and alcohol taken from closets that had been pried open, the affidavit states.
The alcohol consumed included a bottle of cognac, a bottle of whisky, a bottle of champagne and four bottles of wine. The property manager also found a pry bar that likely had been used to open the closet doors, according to the affidavit.
Evidence gathered at that time, which was later analyzed by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, yielded Abbott’s fingerprints, the affidavit states.
Six days later — on Feb. 8, 2017 — the property manager again checked on the West Hopkins home and heard someone moving inside when he approached the front door. Again the manager found food cooking on the stove, a black backpack and fresh footprints in the snow leading to a rear fence gate, according to the affidavit.
The backpack contained identification from a local man, who told police his backpack had been stolen the day before from City Market in Aspen. Police were able to obtain video surveillance from the grocery store showing a man later identified as Abbott take the backpack and walk away, the affidavit states.
Last year, Abbott pleaded guilty to first-degree trespassing of an automobile and identity theft in Garfield County and was sentenced in July to two years in prison, according to court records.
He is serving his sentence at the prison in Sterling, according to online records.
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After a robust conversation last week about the mental health concerns in Aspen, the City Council on Monday night stressed it would like to host a community forum or at least take a stronger role in being the conduit to connect resources for those who need help in a crisis.