News in Brief | AspenTimes.com

News in Brief

Two men wearing ski masks and brandishing semiautomatic weapons robbed WestStar Bank in Vail Village on Monday morning, according to police. They were still at large Monday night.

The robbers made off with an undetermined amount of money. Two employees were in the bank at the time of the robbery, but no injuries were reported, said Suzanne Silverthorn, a spokeswoman for the town of Vail.

The witnesses described the suspects as having accents, possibly Australian or European. They were last seen running up a set of stairs toward Hanson Ranch Road.

According to police, the two men entered the bank shortly after it opened and confronted two female employees inside. After separating the two bank employees, the robbers entered a vault, stuffed money in a bag and fled.

The first suspect is approximately 6 feet tall, wearing a light silver or gray jacket with a dark emblem on the left sleeve. The jacket had the words “Valley Electric” on it. The suspect was wearing a badge or name badge with the name “Dave” on it. He also had a backpack. The second suspect is described as 5 feet 8 inches tall, wearing a dark-blue or black hooded sweatshirt. Both men were possibly wearing black snowboard boots and dark pants.

No Valley Electric was found in Eagle County after a search of the phone book; a company with that name exists in Glenwood Springs. Darold Winchester, manager of the store in Glenwood Springs, said the FBI contacted him Monday.

“We never had a Dave employed at the establishment, and we aren’t missing any employees today,” Winchester said when reached by phone Monday.

The Vail, Avon and Minturn police departments and the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office, Colorado State Patrol and FBI were taking part in the investigation.

The last bank robbery in Vail occurred Dec. 4, 2001, when the WestStar Bank branch at 2111 North Frontage Road was robbed of approximately $20,000. Charges were later filed against 39-year-old William David Jennings, who was arrested in Park City, Utah, in April 2002 in conjunction with a robbery there.

DELTA (AP) ” Despite heavy snowfall, embers still glowed in the rubble of a mountain lodge Monday as authorities began searching for the bodies of three children killed when a fiery explosion leveled the remote building.

The victims were identified as Leslie Ann Bilbrey, 12, Isaac Michael Watkins, 2, and Jamie Marie Reade, 16. All were part of the same extended family that had been visiting the lodge, family spokesman Dale Harper said in a news release issued by St. Mary’s Hospital in nearby Grand Junction. The statement did not list their relationship or hometowns, and Harper declined to comment.

Lodge co-owners Mike and Nancy Hughes, also members of the family, were among the 16 people injured in Saturday’s explosion and fire at the Electric Mountain Lodge. Authorities suspect a propane leak caused the blast.

Survivors said the lodge was hosting a family reunion when the blast ripped through the sprawling, 15,000-square-foot building. It burned so fiercely that fire crews could do nothing with it for hours. Despite heavy snow overnight, Delta County Sheriff Fred McKee said there were “red-hot embers” in the charred rubble Monday, with only two chimneys still standing.


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