Cops: Man tries to steal booze, meat from Snowmass Village hotel
A local man on probation for felony drunken driving was arrested Thursday in Snowmass Village for allegedly attempting to steal alcohol and meat from a hotel, according to court documents.
Jeremiah Casper, 40, was charged with felony theft, felony burglary and misdemeanor trespassing for allegedly trying to steal dozens of bottles of wine, beer and liquor, approximately 10 pounds of meat, banquet trays and cooking pans from the Westin Hotel, according to an affidavit filed Thursday in Aspen District Court.
Casper is the same man arrested in April 2015 for stealing a defibrillator from the transit center at Base Village in Snowmass, which he later said was because he thought he was having a heart attack.
Casper first came to the attention of Snowmass Village police Wednesday at 7:40 a.m. when they received a report of a man sleeping in his car at the Base Village parking garage, the affidavit states. Casper became confrontational when told he could not sleep there and had to leave, though he said he was having problems with his car and trying to fix it.
Thursday morning, the same parking garage attendant called police to report finding Casper there in the morning again, according to the affidavit. Again, Casper allegedly became confrontational before leaving when the attendant began taking pictures of him and his car. Police later found a puddle of engine coolant in the space where Casper’s car was parked, the affidavit states.
Snowmass Village Police Chief Brian Olson and another officer later located Casper’s vehicle parked on Fall Lane and waited for him to return. When Casper came up wearing only a pair of pants and a kitchen apron, Olson identified himself and Casper attempted to run away, according to the affidavit.
After Olson and the other officer captured Casper and were eventually able to handcuff him, the Westin Hotel’s executive chef approached them and took them to an access door to the hotel. The door had been propped open and Olson found “dozens of bottles of wine, beer and liquor, large packages of meat he estimated to be more than 10 pounds, and banquet trays and butter dishes” at the bottom on the stairs, the affidavit states.
Another Westin employee told them he caught a shirtless, shoeless man wearing only pants in the same area about 8 a.m. Thursday morning with carts of food products and liquor.
“(The employee) told us the person said he was getting dressed and just started working at the Westin,” according to the affidavit.
Later the same morning, an employee of the Base Village Conference Center reported that “it looked like someone ‘had a party’ in the men’s bathroom of the conference center,” the affidavit states. When police arrived, they found two storage racks containing wine glasses, a coffee maker, a container with cocktail toothpicks, two wine glassed containing coffee and another containing white wine.
They also found a bottle of engine coolant, a prescription bottle with Casper’s name on it and a drug screening test from November with Casper’s name on it, according to Olson and the affidavit.
The Westin chef later reported that the food and open alcohol containers, estimated to be valued at $3,000, would have to be thrown away because they’d been unsealed and could not be served.
On Friday, prosecutor Sarah Oszczakiewicz said Casper was on probation for felony drunken driving from Eagle County. In addition, he’s been convicted to felony menacing in 2005, assault in 2013, theft in 2015 and two counts of disorderly conduct in 2016, she said.
Casper told District Judge Chris Seldin that he’d recently been released from jail in Eagle County and did not yet have a place to live. Seldin ordered him held in lieu of a $5,000 bond.
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