Snowmass man arrested in Glenwood after high-speed pursuit
Glenwood Springs Post Independent
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – Police were surprised that the driver of an SUV, which crashed into a parked car following a high-speed pursuit with Glenwood Springs Police Sunday night, received only minor injuries.
Authorities were also happy that no one else was injured in the ordeal.
Robert Lee Larsen, 29, of Snowmass, was arrested for multiple charges after the 2006 Toyota Highlander he was driving T-boned another car at the intersection of 7th Street and Blake Avenue, after allegedly fleeing from police.
“It was a heck of an ordeal,” said Glenwood Police Chief Terry Wilson.
Glenwood Police released information on the case Wednesday. Police were notified about 9 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 28, to be on the lookout for a 2006 Toyota Highlander that was reported stolen from in front of the post office in Carbondale.
Wilson said that police received a call from a concerned motorist traveling toward Glenwood Springs on Highway 82, that a vehicle of the same description was driving recklessly.
The Highlander was spotted by Glenwood Police near Grand Avenue and 23rd Street in Glenwood Springs and they gave pursuit. By the time the Highlander reached Sayre Park, Wilson said, another Glenwood Police cruiser and a Garfield County Sheriff’s Deputy had arrived for support.
And, Wilson said, that is the point that Larsen took off.
Wilson said that Larsen turned right onto 14th Street near City Market, then left onto Blake Avenue where police lost the suspect.
“He immediately accelerated,” Wilson said. “At that point, our officers backed off because they didn’t want to push him.”
Police allege, from witness accounts, that Larsen reached speeds of close to 70 mph on Blake Avenue, blowing through stop signs, until he passed through the 7th Street intersection where Blake Avenue ends. The Highlander T-boned a white Ford Fusion that was parked on the street.
Wilson said that the Highlander hit the Fusion with so much force that both vehicles ended up near the train tracks nearly 20 feet down an embankment, to the east of the Glenwood Springs Train Depot.
When police arrived, Larsen was still in the driver’s seat of the Highlander, with all airbags deployed. Larsen was then taken by EMS to Valley View Hospital, where he was treated and released into custody early Monday morning.
“The subject was extremely combative with officers, and with emergency room personnel at the hospital,” Wilson said.
Larsen was then transported and booked into the Garfield County Jail on multiple felony and misdemeanor charges including aggravated first-degree auto theft, vehicular eluding, driving with revoked license – habitual offender, and criminal mischief.
Larsen was under a court order to not drink alcohol, and investigators later discovered that Larsen had at least 10 previous driving restrictions from the Department of Motor Vehicles.
Police did not release Larsen’s blood-alcohol content (BAC), but Wilson said that officers were “astonished” that Larsen was able to make it from Carbondale to Glenwood without crashing.
“It’s amazing that someone was not hurt,” Wilson said.
Larsen appeared in District Court and was advised of the charges against him, Tuesday. Formal charges have yet to be filed in the case.
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