Summit County police blotter: Squatter betrayed by can of soup |

Summit County police blotter: Squatter betrayed by can of soup

Jack Queen

Last summer, a part-time resident of Summit County returned to her home after a weeklong absence and found that the deadbolt to one of her doors had been tampered with and that the frame had been broken.

Upon entering the residence, she noticed that a piece of furniture had been moved and that several drawers in the kitchen were slightly open. Despite having cleaned the residence before leaving, she found trash in the garbage can, including broken eggs, an empty soup can, some paper towels and a crumpled up newspaper.

She also found cooked food on the stovetop and noticed that the TV remotes were not in their usual place. In a report, she noted being surprised that a pair of skis, avalanche beacon and GoPro camera, among other valuables, had not been taken.

A Summit County sheriff’s deputy emptied the contents of the trashcan and pulled a thumbprint off a pried-open soup can. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation matched the print to a man who was subsequently arrested on Dec. 28 and charged with second-degree burglary, first-degree criminal trespass and criminal mischief.

Leisurely car thieves take a long pit stop

On Jan. 11, Breckenridge police were dispatched to a convenience store to respond to a report of a BMW that had been abandoned next to a gas pump since the day before. The responding officer ran the car’s license plates and was notified by dispatch that it had been reported stolen in Denver.

The officer then spoke to an employee of the store, who said that a woman had arrived with another man in the car and attempted to purchase some items. Her credit card was declined, so she paid cash. An hour later, the employee said, he observed the woman in the car “doing nothing.”

The next day, it was still parked in the same spot but the two people were gone.

Police impounded the car and made contact with the owner’s daughter, who arranged for a tow truck to pick it up later the next week. The case was inactivated pending a review of surveillance camera footage.

Snow bank foils getaway

Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to Dillon Valley on the night of Jan. 1 responding to a report of a stolen vehicle. Upon arriving in the area, a deputy noticed a vehicle matching the description of the stolen car crashed into a snow bank on the sidewalk.

Two people were on scene and informed the deputy that the owner of the vehicle had chased the driver after he attempted to flee on foot. A male suspect was quickly located nearby and placed under arrest.

While being placed into a patrol car, the man, reportedly smelling of alcohol, volunteered that he had gotten into an argument with his girlfriend earlier that night and proceeded to drink heavily before he stole the car, which he found idling in a parking lot.

He allegedly crashed into another vehicle while driving away before running into the snow bank and fleeing on foot.

The man was charged with theft, driving under the influence and careless driving.

Far from home

At around 2:45 a.m. on Jan. 11, a Breckenridge police officer observed a man in the driver’s seat of a parked car slumped over an armrest. Upon approaching the vehicle, the officer noticed that he had vomited on the center console.

The officer tapped on the window several times, and the man eventually woke up suddenly before falling asleep again while sitting up.

When he woke up again, the man informed the officer that he lived in a different state and had arrived in Breckenridge the day before but didn’t have a place to stay. He said that he just wanted to go home and sleep but couldn’t because he lived several states away.

The man was taken into protective custody and transported to detox without incident.

A popular target

On Friday, Jan. 13, a man reported that his snowboard had been stolen after he left it on a rack in the bus turnaround of the Breckenridge Transfer Station while he went inside to use the restroom.

The board, which was Rome SDS brand and estimated to be worth around $450, was gone when he came back outside about a minute later. The man said he waited around in the area to see if someone had taken it by accident, but no one returned with it.

An officer viewed security camera footage of the man entering the transfer station but it didn’t show the area where the board was taken from. The case was closed due to lack of suspect information.

At around the same time several days later, a man reported that his Rome SDS snowboard had been stolen from a rack at the bus turnaround in the Beaver Run base area.

He said he had gone inside for roughly five minutes and upon returning found that his board, which he valued at $450, was gone. According to a report from Breckenridge Resort Security, there was no surveillance camera footage to review.

Pants thief seizes opportunity

On Jan. 12, a man at the Ski Hill Grill in Breckenridge left his ski pants at his seat while he went to the bathroom for about 15 minutes. When he returned, the pants were gone. He checked with the lost and found, but nothing had been turned in.

There was a Brighton ski pass in one of the pockets valued at $450, and the man said he would have to pay for a re-issue unless he could present a police report. The case was inactivated because there were no suspects.

False alarm

On Jan. 14, a woman in Breckenridge reported that her purse had been stolen out of her car while it was parked in the F-Lot. She was having dinner with her family in town at the time.

She said she had left the purse on the front seat and didn’t bring it in to the restaurant because it was bulky. She said that she was “sure” but not “100 percent” sure that she had locked the car.

The woman called the responding officer later that afternoon and reported that she had found the purse at the residence where she was staying.

The case was closed.

Compiled from police reports and arrest affidavits

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