Overheard death threats, handgun lead to arrest in Snowmass Village | AspenTimes.com

Overheard death threats, handgun lead to arrest in Snowmass Village

Snowmass Village police arrested a local man Wednesday after he brandished a handgun and was overheard on the phone threatening to kill another person, Chief Brian Olson said.

Keith Foster, 25, was arrested without incident after officers from Snowmass Village, Aspen and Pitkin County sheriff's deputies surrounded an apartment building where he was staying, Olson said.

Foster, who told police he wants to be a gunsmith, later surrendered six total weapons to police for safekeeping, though only two of them were in working order, he said.

The incident began around 8 p.m. Wednesday, when Foster walked through the Stonebridge Hotel in Snowmass Village while screaming and yelling to someone on the phone that he wanted to kill someone, Olson said. The comments were heard by people in the hotel lobby and bar/restaurant area, he said.

Not long after, a hotel employee outside the hotel heard Foster making similar statements with a 9mm handgun in his hand and called 911, Olson said. When area law enforcement officers arrived and began looking for Foster, another person reported seeing him enter an apartment building across from the hotel while engaging the slide on the semi-automatic handgun, he said.

After officers set up a perimeter around the apartment complex, Foster walked out about 8:20 p.m. of his own accord and readily complied with officer instructions to lie on the ground, Olson said. Foster was handcuffed and taken to the Snowmass Village police station after officers found a 9mm handgun on him, he said.

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He later told officers he'd been talking to his brother about his former girlfriend's new boyfriend and denied that he actually planned to use the gun to kill anyone, Olson said. Foster did not have a permit to carry a concealed weapon, and said he was doing so for protection, he said.

Foster was charged with disorderly conduct and carrying a concealed weapon, both misdemeanors.

He also allowed police to hold two shotguns, a hunting rifle, a WWII Russian rifle and two handguns he owned, Olson said. Foster said he wanted to be a gunsmith and was working on the guns. Only one of the shotguns and a handgun worked, Olson said.

Foster was apologetic with officers and had no idea he'd triggered a firestorm with his actions, Olson said. Olson praised hotel employees for reporting Foster's concerning actions to police.

jauslander@aspentimes.com

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