Man arrested after ACZ lab break-in
Police say suspect was found drunk and in boxer shorts on lawn
September 7, 2003
A 25-year-old Hayden man has been arrested on suspicion of breaking into the ACZ Laboratories Inc. and damaging property inside the building.
Brain James Fatjo was arrested early Sunday morning and charged with second-degree burglary and criminal mischief.
Steamboat Springs police Sgt. Dale Coyner said Fatjo was found highly intoxicated outside the laboratory on Downhill Drive when police where called to the scene.
Coyner said a window in the back of the building was broken and that numerous laboratories in the building had been vandalized, with computer monitors thrown to the floor and glass bottles and beakers broken.
A great deal of broken glass and chemical spills were found in the building, as well as blood, Coyner said.
Fatjo was found outside laying in the grass in nothing but a T-shirt and boxer shorts, Coyner said. Inside the laboratory, police found soaking wet tennis shoes and socks and a pair of blue jeans with Fatjo’s wallet, checkbook and ID, he said.
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Police bumped the charges up from a Class 4 to a Class 3 felony because there was suspicion that Fatjo had broken into the building to obtain chemicals for the manufacturing of a controlled substance.
Because some of the samples that ACZ Laboratories test come from around the world, Coyner said couldn’t estimate the cost of the damage. He did say that a Class 4 felony usually is charged in burglaries of more than $500 and less than $15,000.
The business’ security company called police to report that a forced-door alarm had gone off Saturday night. The police arrived on the scene about 10:17 p.m. and said they found Fatjo highly intoxicated near that door.
Police believe Fatjo entered into a broken window and exited through the door.
Fatjo had abrasions on his forehead, hands and legs and was transported to Yampa Valley Medical Center, Coyner said. After treatment for his injuries, Fatjo was taken to the Routt County Jail where he is being held on a $20,000 bail.
The case is under investigation, but Coyner said it does not look as though Fatjo was ever employed by ACZ Laboratories.