Sheriff's Office describes Strawberry Park Hot Springs robbery suspect

Investigators seek tips on Saturday night armed crime

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Tips needed

Anyone with information about Saturday’s robbery at Strawberry Parks Hot Springs is asked to call Routt County Sheriff’s Office investigator Mike Curzon at 970-870-5508.

— Routt County Sheriff’s Office investigators have released a description of the suspect in Saturday night’s armed robbery at Strawberry Park Hot Springs in hopes of receiving a tip that leads to his arrest.

Under­sher­iff Ray Birch said Mon­day that the suspect is a white man between 5 feet 10 inches and 6 feet tall with a slight build. He said the man was wearing a ski mask; a dark-colored, hip-length coat; yellow-and-brown camouflage pants; and gloves.

Birch declined to comment on the make and model of the suspect’s car. He said the Sheriff’s Office still is conducting interviews and trying to determine exactly what kind of car the man drove.

According to the Sheriff’s Office, the man entered the ticket area at the Hot Springs off Routt County Road 36 just before 11 p.m. with a gun and demanded cash from the lone employee still on duty. After getting about $800 in cash, the man told the employee to get on the floor, Birch said. The man then pepper sprayed the employee and disabled the office phone before fleeing.

A shuttle driver found the employee, who was taken to the hospital but was not seriously injured. Because the shuttle driver didn’t have cell phone service at the Hot Springs, he drove to where he could call 911. By that time, 20 to 40 minutes had passed.

Birch said the Sheriff’s Office doesn’t think the suspect was a current or former Strawberry Park Hot Springs employee. Hot Springs owner Don Johnson also doesn’t suspect an employee.

Johnson said two employees were working Saturday night. He said one left at 10:15 p.m., 15 minutes before the Hot Springs was scheduled to close, and a night watchman was scheduled to come on duty at 11 p.m. but didn’t show up.

Aside from minor thefts, Johnson said a crime this serious never has happened at his business. He said it’s troubling for all local businesses.

“I think everyone’s a little scared this could escalate,” he said.

Birch said the Sheriff’s Office has been working with the All Crimes Enforcement Team, Steam­boat Springs Police De­part­ment and Colorado State Patrol on the case. He said they have a meeting this morning to discuss it.

“We’re going to interact with other local agencies and share information with each other that will help keep the community safe,” Birch said. “And sharing information increases our ability to activity solve crimes.”

Anyone with information about the robbery is asked to call investigator Mike Curzon at 970-870-5508.

— To reach Jack Weinstein, call 970-871-4203 or e-mail jweinstein@SteamboatToday.com

Comments

RPG 3 years, 3 months ago

Let's see how our new sheriff does on this one.

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bill schurman 3 years, 3 months ago

When Wall was sheriff we had ZERO armed robberies. Already one in the Commander's first month. However, if I might add a tip you might just find it strange the the night watch man does not show up for work. An "inside" job ??

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Tommie Belz 3 years, 2 months ago

That is "When" and "Was" sooooo, that guy that "WAS" Sheriff is now in the unemployment line, just sayin.

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