Two alleged Aspen thieves hit with felonies | AspenTimes.com

Two alleged Aspen thieves hit with felonies

Two Roaring Fork Valley residents caught recently with merchandise stolen from luxury stores in Aspen were charged with felony theft Monday.

Samuel Candela-Herrera, 19, who was caught last week by an off-duty Texas sheriff's deputy and his family after running out of Louis Vuitton with a jacket and a necklace valued at more than $3,600, faces the theft charge as well as assault and resisting arrest.

Candela-Herrera, who fought with police who tried to arrest him and punched the off-duty El Paso County (Texas) deputy in the face, declined to acknowledge a District Court judge conducting his advisement by phone Monday. A prosecutor had to tell the judge, who was calling in from Glenwood Springs, that Candela-Herrera was silently sitting in front of a microphone.

District Judge John Neiley ordered Candela-Herrera held in lieu of a $4,500 cash-only bond because of his history of not showing up for court appearances.

Candela-Herrera also was wanted on a failure-to-appear warrant from Garfield County District Court charging him with felony criminal mischief and obstructing an officer.

Carleton Meyers, 43, also was charged with felony theft Monday.

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The Aspen man was initially charged with misdemeanor theft after he was identified as the man caught on surveillance video entering a bathroom at Rubey Park in October and leaving behind a hangar and a $1,500 pricetag for a jacket later determined to be stolen.

Meyers was arrested after he randomly approached a police officer and a Roaring Fork Transportation Authority employee who were reviewing surveillance video of him at Rubey Park a day later and saying "I didn't do it" in a joking manner.

Police later searched Meyers' apartment and found five more jackets similar to the one he was seen with at Rubey Park. The first jacket had been stolen from Aspen Sports on East Cooper Avenue, police said.

Meyers has "a significant criminal history" that includes convictions for harassment, burglary, assault and a DUI conviction from a few months ago, said Sarah Oszczakiewicz, assistant district attorney.

Meyers, who has remained in jail since his arrest last month, told District Judge John Neiley on Monday that he's on parole. Neiley ordered him held in lieu of a $2,500 cash or surety bond.

jauslander@aspentimes.com