Man in fair condition after assault outside Steamboat Springs grocery store



Routt County Sheriff's Office/Courtesy

Matthew Shane Merritt Penrose

— A man was in fair condition Tuesday at Swedish Medical Center in Denver after police said he was beaten severely Sunday night by a man in the City Market parking lot in Steamboat Springs.

Matthew Shane Merritt Penrose, 26, who is listed as a transient, has been formally charged with second-degree assault with bond set at $20,000.

Steamboat Springs Police Department officers were called to a report of an assault at the City Market parking lot at 8 p.m. Police found Mark Balsiger, 34, of Steamboat, sitting between two cars in a pool of blood with a bloodied face. When police later talked to him at Yampa Valley Medical Center, Balsiger said the last thing he remembered was being at a downtown bar.

Police interviewed several witnesses who saw what happened. According to an affidavit filed in Routt County Court, the witnesses saw the two men arguing at the front entrance of the grocery store. They continued arguing in the parking lot, and the situation escalated. According to the affidavit, Penrose slapped Balsiger, punched him and then pushed him into a truck. While on the ground, Penrose then stomped and kicked Balsiger in the head, the affidavit states.

The witnesses went to break up the fight, and Penrose fled toward a bus stop.

Police took Penrose into custody at the bus stop. According to the affidavit, Penrose saw Balsiger being loaded into an ambulance and said, “Guess he shouldn’t have disrespected me.”

Doctors told police that Balsiger suffered a brain bleed and had multiple fractures to his face. Because of the brain bleed, Balsiger was flown to Swedish Medical Center so he could be monitored by a neurological team.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247 or email


erich ferguson 3 years, 10 months ago

No matter the events leading up to this no one should expect things to end up this way. Sounds to me like Penrove was waiting for a trigger for his anger, and sad too say my good friend Mark was in the wrong place at the wrong time. A completely harmless, friendly, all around good person Mark could sure use some help with some of the bills he'll soon be dealling with. We have a jar at cpl with room for a few donations. Stop on by.

Thank. You


Scott Wedel 3 years, 10 months ago


No evidence of alcohol being a factor. The victim with a brain injury says his last memory is of being in a bar, but all of the facts of the case happened in the supermarket parking lot. The attacker felt disrespected for whatever reason and then brutally attacked the victim.


rhys jones 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank you again for another professional opinion. Now you're telling the lawyer his job.

Since the last thing the victim remembers is being in a bar, it is logical to infer that the altercation began there. To an unstable person under the influence of alcohol, the wrong look can constitute "disrespect." When the facts of this case play out, I will bet money alcohol was involved.

Mr. Penrose will not go away long enough, and I hope he doesn't come back here.

Wanna bet, Scott?


Scott Wedel 3 years, 10 months ago


No, there is absolutely no reason to believe the altercation starting in a bar.

What a victim with a brain injury has as a last memory just means the brain injury prevented his short term memory from being saved as long term memory. So he probably went shopping after being in a bar. Considering he felt okay to drive to do grocery shopping, he probably was not drunk.

Considering the facts that the victim was attacked at his car and the attacker was a transient, it doesn't make sense how the transient could have followed the victim there from an incident in a bar.

Given that, it is more logical to presume the incident happened purely in the parking lot.

And from the attacker's own statement, he said he felt disrespected and so viciously attacked the victim and was glad at the injuries he caused. Mr Penrose sounds like a menace that could have gone off at anyone that didn't give him what he wanted. Maybe Mr Penrose will blame alcohol for being so violent, but there is no reason to believe that the victim previously being in a bar had anything to do with being attacked.

If you want to bet that the victim's possible alcohol use was a factor in the attack which is what you claim by saying the altercation began in a bar then I'll take that bet. But Mr Penrose will probably have an assortment of issues that probably includes alcohol and whatever drugs he can get including pot. Regardless, by being so violent then he needs to put in jail for a long time.


erich ferguson 3 years, 10 months ago

Before this dissapears I would like to thank the witnesses for being there and reporting it. In most places people get away with these kind of crimes. Steamboat is still a small town with people who care. Thank you.


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