Ring thief extradited back to Aspen | AspenTimes.com

Ring thief extradited back to Aspen

Jason Auslander
The Aspen Times

A 28-year-old Oklahoma man who pleaded guilty seven years ago to stealing three rings valued at more than $30,000 from an Aspen home was extradited back to town Wednesday.

Eric Watson never paid $8,666 in restitution and never served 40 hours of community service after pleading guilty to felony theft in December 2009, according to court documents.

Watson appeared in District Court on Wednesday, when District Judge Denise Lynch affirmed a $50,000 bond set six years ago by another judge and told Watson he will be re-sentenced in the case.

Watson was working for Roto Rooter on Dec. 30, 2008, when he was called to a home on Blue Sage Lane in Pitkin County to fix plumbing problems, according to court documents.

A day later, the homeowner noticed an engagement ring with a 2.39-carat solitaire diamond in the middle surrounded by 36 princess diamonds valued at $23,000 missing, along with an 18-carat gold wedding band valued at $3,000 and another diamond and gold ring valued at $12,000, the documents state.

Watson later admitted to a family member that he stole the rings, the documents state.

Watson pleaded guilty to felony theft in Aspen in December 2009, and then-District Judge Gail Nichols sentenced him to five years probation, which was transferred to his home in Oklahoma.

Watson was arrested in March 2012 in Oklahoma for car theft, burglary, grand larceny and unauthorized use of a vehicle, according to court documents.