Richards pleads guilty to felony burglary
Jacob Richards pleaded guilty to felony second-degree burglary in a plea agreement finalized yesterday that clears him from further prosecution in connection with a highly publicized Aspen crime spree.
Richards, 18, a lifelong Aspen resident and son of Aspen Mayor Rachel Richards, must pay $5,300 in restitution as part of the deal.
He had been charged with a total of six felonies – five related to the September burglary of a Twining Flats home and one, conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery and felony theft, related to the Aug. 5 armed robbery of Clark’s Market in Aspen. All counts, save the second-degree burglary charge, were dismissed in Pitkin County’s 9th Judicial District Court yesterday.
The disposition also stipulates that “the district attorney’s office will not file any further charges against Mr. Richards for any other activities,” said Richards’ attorney, Pamela Mackey, during the proceedings.
Richards may, however, be liable for restitution concerning the “other activities,” said Assistant District Attorney Lawson Wills. Furthermore, Richards must testify honestly against co-defendants in two cases, he said.
Richards is the third local young man to plead guilty to charges related to a crime spree that included at least one burglary and three armed robberies. A total of 10 young men are implicated in the crime wave.
Yuri Ognacevic, 18, pleaded guilty Nov. 8 to felony robbery, related to the Clark’s holdup. Nathan Morse, 20, pleaded guilty to felony conspiracy to commit second-degree burglary on Nov. 1, in connection with the Twining Flats burglary.
Richards, who is currently being held in the Pitkin County Jail on a $50,000 bond, is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 10.
Cody Wille, 17, who authorities allege was one of three gunmen to stick up Clark’s, is apparently close to striking a plea agreement as well, according to testimony yesterday.
“We’ve had intensive discussions with Mr. Wills and we’d like to set the matter over” until Dec. 20, said Wille’s attorney, Tom Silverman. “I expect then we will have a disposition.”
Judge J.E. DeVilbiss granted Wille a continuance until Dec. 20.
Shea Treadwell, 18, was formally charged with three felony counts yesterday, all related to the Aug. 19 armed robbery of The Village Market in Snowmass Village. Among them, he faces one count of committing a crime of violence, which carries a mandatory prison sentence.
Authorities allege Treadwell, a former Village Market employee, provided Stefan Schutter, 17; Wade Hammond, 18; and Moses Greengrass, 18, with information about how best to knock off the grocery store.
Treadwell will appear in court next on Jan. 10 for a preliminary hearing.
Anthony Rizzuto, 19, and Thomas Colver, 19, both appeared in court yesterday and were granted continuances.
Denver attorney Leonard Chesler entered his appearance on behalf of Rizzuto and asked that the preliminary hearing that had been slated for yesterday be pushed back until Jan. 10. Rizzuto is charged with five felonies related to the Twining Flats Road burglary.
Colver, who faces felony charges related to the Aug. 6 armed robbery of the Aspen Alps as well as felony possession of psilocybin mushrooms, was granted a continuance until Dec. 6, when further proceedings in both cases will occur.
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Looking for alternative to I-70 closures, truckers are ignoring numerous warning signs to attempt the narrow, treacherous road that goes over Independence Pass east of Aspen.