Former Snowmass man faces extradition from Georgia jail

Andre Salvail
The Aspen Times

A man suspected of stealing two diamond rings from his roommate in Snowmass Village about 17 months ago faces extradition to Pitkin County on a felony theft charge, Police Chief Brian Olson said Monday.

Kenneth K. Carvalho, 40, is in the custody of the Clarke County Jail in Athens, Georgia. He was arrested by Athens-Clarke County police Dec. 31 following an arrest warrant issued by Pitkin County District Judge Gail Nichols in December 2013. The alleged theft occurred in September 2013, Olson said.

Olson said a Snowmass Village resident reported that her temporary roommate, later identified as Carvalho, stole two diamond rings valued at $17,000 and $500. When initially questioned by police, Carvalho denied stealing the rings but did admit to having some dealings with an Aspen jewelry store over a ring his grandmother had given him.

“He said he had dropped it off as a consignment with a local jeweler,” Olson said. “I tracked it down, found the diamond and had it tested, and it turned out to be the stolen diamond which had been certified.”

The diamond sold as consignment to the local jeweler was 1.5 carats. It had been removed from the ring valued at $17,000. The whereabouts of two nearly half-carat diamonds belonging to the same ring — as well as the smaller ring which contained tiny diamond chips — are unknown, Olson said.

“The suspect sort of disappeared after I talked with him,” the police chief said. “He dropped his Facebook page; his cell phone went out. We knew he was from Georgia but we had no other information.”

The victim, however, remained vigilant, and when a new Facebook page belonging to Carvalho reappeared, she contacted Snowmass police, Olson said. Police in Athens were soon notified and they arrested Carvalho.

The 9th Judicial District Attorney’s Office recently agreed to the extradition, Olson said.

Olson said he believes Carvalho lived and worked in Snowmass Village for about a year. He obtained housing from the victim after losing his employee-housing unit.

“He relied on her for a room when he lost his housing,” Olson said. “She gave him a place to sleep.”

The police chief said the local jeweler who accepted the diamond on consignment paid Carvalho $1,500.

“The jeweler was very cooperative, and even though he was going to be out some money, he had no trouble giving me the stolen property,” Olson said.

No other information was available as of 6 p.m. Monday.