Rap flow dig, gun lead to charges
A 22-year-old who allegedly took issue with an acquaintance’s criticism of his rapping skills by flashing a handgun and threatening violence was charged Thursday with four felony counts of menacing.
Tyler “Sketchy T” Mancuello was arrested Thursday morning after a felony traffic stop on Highline Road in Snowmass Village, said Brian Olson, Snowmass Village police chief.
“It’s my understanding he told my officers there was a handgun in the glove box,” Olson said.
Mancuello appeared in Pitkin County District Court on Thursday afternoon, where prosecutor Don Nottingham said he was in the process of reviewing a search warrant application so police could obtain permission to search Mancuello’s car for the weapon. Nottingham asked District Judge Chris Seldin to keep Mancuello’s bond at $10,000 cash only “given the dangerousness of the defendant’s alleged behavior.”
Seldin, however, chalked up Mancuello’s behavior to youthful posturing and cited his lack of criminal history and his age as reasons to lower the bond.
“This is more along the lines of young, dumb, macho bravado,” Seldin said. “Once he realizes the consequences of his dumb, macho behavior, he should be chastened enough to stop.”
The judge ordered Mancuello held in lieu of a $1,500 cash-only bond, though he also entered a protection order forbidding contact with four victims in the case and ordering him to undergo random drug screenings.
The incident involving the handgun occurred Oct. 10 after the group of four teenagers played tennis at the Aspen Recreation Center and were leaving, according to an arrest warrant affidavit filed in District Court. One of the teens later told police he’d “antagonized” Mancuello through social media, remarking that his rapping had “no flow,” the affidavit states.
Mancuello then used the location services of a social media application to figure out where the teen who made the offensive comment was located and allegedly confronted him and his friends. Witnesses said Mancuello yelled at the group, asking who wanted to fight him, then lifted his sweatshirt to show the handgun in his waistband, according to the affidavit.
All four victims told police they were scared. One said that as Mancuello drove off, he said, “One of you guys is going to get popped one day,” the affidavit states.
Olson said Mancuello has been linked to other similar menacing incidents in Snowmass Village, though police did not have enough information to charge him in connection with them.
Arnold Mordkin, Mancuello’s attorney, said his client, who has a Snowmass Village address, has been employed in the area for two years as a manager at a “drug dispensary.”
In addition to staying away from the victims in the case, Mancuello must surrender all his guns and ammunition to police, Seldin said. Mordkin said his client’s only weapon was the handgun.
The judge warned Mancuello that he was “on a short leash” and that violating conditions of his bond could land him back behind bars.
A search of YouTube on Thursday turned up several rap videos by Sketchy T. Olson said he’s seen some of the videos and while he’s not a fan of the genre, he disagrees with the teen’s previous criticism of Mancuello.
“He’s probably not bad,” Olson said of Sketchy T’s skills. “He’s got some flow – I give him that.”