Prosecutors dismiss case vs. man in Snowmass robbery
Aspen Times Staff Writer
Prosecutors have dismissed the case against a Carbondale man arrested last month in connection with the armed robbery of an Old Snowmass home.
Zane Marshall Stahl, 21, appeared in Pitkin County District Court on Monday only to hear Assistant District Attorney Lawson Wills say he does not intend to file charges against him. Judge J.E. DeVilbiss then dismissed Stahl, who left the courtroom without a backward glance. Police once believed him to be an accomplice.
Wills said investigators looked into the circumstances surrounding the case and determined that Stahl did not “aid and abet” the man who allegedly committed the crime.
“His involvement in the case was not to the level [that warranted prosecution],” Wills said after the hearing.
The district attorney’s office has now turned its focus to 25-year-old Steven Lynn Elliott of El Jebel. He is accused of leaving Stahl in his car while he attempted to rob a Snowmass couple in their home.
During his last court appearance, Stahl’s attorney told prosecutors that his client had asked for a ride to work when Elliott allegedly made a stop at 11000 Snowmass Creek Road on March 14. Elliott allegedly told Stahl that he was going to talk to a friend and “get some weed,” then showed Stahl a handgun and asked him to come inside the house. Stahl told police that he refused the offer, and Elliott went into the house alone.
Stahl said he heard screaming from inside the house after Elliott allegedly entered, but as Stahl was planning to run from the scene, Elliott returned and climbed into the car. Stahl said as Elliott drove away from the house, he asked Stahl to throw the gun out of his window. Stahl reportedly refused, and the pair were arrested less than 15 minutes later.
According to court documents, Elliott corroborated Stahl’s story during interviews with police. Elliott reportedly told police that the plan to rob the Snowmass couple for “marijuana and money” was completely his.
Elliott also appeared in Pitkin County District Court on Monday. His public defender, Jim Conway, requested that court proceedings be postponed as he continues to review the facts in the case. Due to the “crimes of violence” involved, Conway said he preferred to wait for prosecutors to finish their discovery in the case. Elliott faces charges of first-degree burglary, criminal attempt of aggravated robbery, menacing and conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery.
Elliott is “exploring the possibility of hiring private counsel,” Conway said and asked the court to give him time to hire an attorney. His arraignment has been scheduled for May 6.
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