Thursday, December 19, 2002
Steamboat Springs Most people who lose their ski and snowboard equipment to theft never see it again.
Thanks to some teamwork on the slopes Thursday afternoon, one man got his stolen skis back.
Brian Schlosser left his skis unattended while he purchased a lift ticket for the Steamboat Ski Area. When he returned, the skis were gone.
A group of children sitting near the entrance to the gondola told him they saw a man hurriedly boarding the gondola with skis but no poles, said Art Fiebing, assistant police chief of the Steamboat Springs Police Department.
While Schlosser informed authorities, his friends spread the word on the slopes about the suspect.
A ski lift operator at the Storm Peak chairlift noticed a man who was skiing without poles and whose skis fit the description of Schlosser's missing equipment, according to police reports.
The operator summoned Steamboat Ski Patrol to track down the suspect.
Ski patrolman Jeff Sumskis responded to the Storm Peak chairlift and caught the suspect.
Sumskis took the suspect to ski patrol headquarters for some questioning, Fiebing said.
According to police reports, the suspect told ski patrol and security that a friend who works at a local sporting goods store had loaned the equipment to him.
Fiebing said Sumskis and security personnel determined the suspect, whose name is Alex Cascaddan, was lying.
Cascaddan, 19, of Steamboat Springs, admitted his wrongdoing.
"He said, 'It was a powder day, and I didn't have any skis,'" Fiebing said.
Police arrested Cascaddan. He faces a class four felony theft charge for stealing an item valued at more than $500.
"For all the skis that are stolen, we get very few of them back," Fiebing said. "It took some good work with the security people and some citizens and Sumskis. His friends really spread the word."
Cascaddan is being held in the Routt County Jail on a $5,000 bond.