Suspected car thief, meth dealer faces 18 charges |

Suspected car thief, meth dealer faces 18 charges

Police say Denver man was found in Vail with stolen car, license plate and drugs

Shay Michael Stanford faces 18 criminal charges and 10 more as a habitual criminal.
Special to the Daily

VAIL — If you give police officers permission to search you, do not feign surprise when they find the methamphetamine in your pants pocket.

Shay Michael Stanford, 30, faces 18 charges — 10 felonies and eight misdemeanors — ranging from stealing a license plate to put on a stolen car in an apparent effort to throw Vail police off his scent (it didn’t) to a methamphetamine distribution charge. He’s also being charged with seven more offenses as a habitual criminal.

And he allegedly did all that while driving on a revoked license.

What police say happened

It was around 2:30 a.m. August 3 when Stanford’s night hit the skids. He was hanging around the Vail Transportation Center, reportedly drunk and carrying a knife. Police were called and when they arrived Stanford and another man fled into the Solaris parking garage on foot.

Vail Police Officer Casey Ipema spotted Stanford and another man trying to drive away from the Solaris in a white Lexus. Ipema stopped the Lexus, called dispatchers who ran a quick check on Stanford. They turned up two felony warrants — one a parole violation and another for burglary.

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Because Stanford was in possession of a stolen license plate on an allegedly stolen Lexus, Ipema asked him to step out of the vehicle. Stanford then let Ipema search him and the Lexus.

Ipema found 18.8 grams of meth in Stanford’s right front pants pocket. According to the arrest affidavit, Stanford then volunteered that he also had needles to inject drugs, which Ipema found in the glove box, according to the police report.

As it turns out, dispatchers were not done checking on Stanford. They determined that the Lexus was reported stolen from Stuart Schwartz in Littleton on May 13, according to police records. Police also found burglary tools, and allege that Stanford used those burglary tools to break into another car.

He was checked in as a guest in the Eagle County jail, where he is being held on $15,000 bond. He makes his next court appearance Sept. 3 before Eagle County Judge Rachel Fresquez.

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