Police seek suspect in Basalt assaults | AspenTimes.com

Police seek suspect in Basalt assaults

Basalt police are searching for a man for questioning in the assault of two women the night of June 6.

Authorities are seeking Santos Carranza Ramirez, also known as Jorge Andrade, approximately 25 years of age, for the assaults. They released a sketch of the man Wednesday and asked that anyone with information call them at 927-4316.

One of the most distinctive features of the man is gold front teeth, according to authorities.

“We think he’s still in the valley but we don’t know where,” said Basalt Police Sgt. Chris Maniscalchi. Ramirez is a former Basalt resident who most recently had an El Jebel address, Maniscalchi said.

The assaults occurred less than 30 minutes apart, with the first one at about 10 p.m. A woman walking on the 7-Eleven bridge across the Fryingpan River in Basalt was grabbed from behind. Two women driving by got out of their vehicle and yelled at the man until he ran away.

While authorities searched at that location, they heard the screams of another woman a short distance away. That woman was also assaulted by a man of a similar description who ran away when approached by an officer. The victim reported that the man held a knife to her throat.

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Investigators initially believed both assaults were robbery attempts. “One of the victims believes it was sexually motivated,” Maniscalchi said.

Both women received minor injuries but were badly shaken by the incident. Maniscalchi said people shouldn’t panic but they should take precautions such as walking with someone at night.

“I think people are concerned,” he said. “I’m not sensing hysteria.”

The assailant would face possible charges of second- and third-degree assault, attempted sexual assault and attempted armed robbery, Maniscalchi said.