Judge maintains high bond amount for alleged EagleVail drug dealer | VailDaily.com

Judge maintains high bond amount for alleged EagleVail drug dealer

Prosecution plays audio from calls made by Matthew DeAngelo to argue that he is demonstrating criminal behavior even from behind bars

A judge ruled to maintain the bond of an EagleVail man charged with drug dealing at $150,000 after the 5th Judicial District Attorney’s Office played audio of his calls from the Eagle County Detention Center.

Deputy District Attorney Johnny Lombardi said the calls showed that Matthew DeAngelo was plotting to engage in criminal behavior from the jail after DeAngelo told his father how he could quickly pay back his bond amount if released.

The audio clips from the calls have not been admitted as official evidence in DeAngelo’s case. Eagle County Judge Rachel Olguin-Fresquez only allowed Lombardi to play them for the purpose of determining whether to honor a request to have DeAngelo’s bond reduced.

DeAngelo was found with a large amount of drugs, over $9,000 in cash and a sawed-off shotgun after police searched his EagleVail residence at the start of the month.

Police brought a total of 23 charges against him. This includes 17 felonies, five of which were Class 1 drug felonies upgraded in severity through a “special offender” enhancement used to crack down on suspected illegal narcotics dealers.

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Members of the county’s Gore Range Narcotics Interdiction Team located 644 grams of suspected cocaine, 770 grams of suspected methamphetamine and 358 grams of suspected ketamine.

They also found 32 grams of psilocybin mushrooms, 60 tabs of LSD or “acid,” 36 Xanax pills and 53 Ritalin pills, according to a press release from the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office.

DeAngelo’s bond was set at $150,000 of which he would need to pay 10%, or $15,000, to be let out of the county jail as he waits for his case to be heard.

Bond amounts in felony drug cases typically hover around $50,000, DeAngelo’s defense attorney Jesse Wiens said Monday. This high of a bond is unreasonable and unattainable, he argued.

Lombardi argued that the motion to reduce DeAngelo’s bond should be shut down because of his criminal background, lack of employment and statements he made during calls from the jail to his father and another man.

Wiens objected to the use of the audio clips, saying that he had not yet had the chance to verify that the clips were indeed phone calls made by his client.

In one call, DeAngelo tells someone who he insinuates is his father that he could reimburse him for the $15,000 bond quickly using money that he has stashed somewhere along with money that people “owe” him, according to the audio clip.

In another call, the caller presumed to be DeAngelo admits to selling drugs after seeing how lucrative it was for his roommate.

The final call played for the judge was between DeAngelo and a man named “Elijah,” Lombardi said. DeAngelo tells the man that he plans to get back to work when he’s out, adding that he’s “sure it’s been bone dry” without him.

Ultimately, Judge Olguin-Frequez sided with the prosecution and ruled to maintain the $150,000 bond.

Wiens filed a motion for a preliminary hearing, which forces prosecutors to present enough evidence for a judge to determine that it is warranted for a case to proceed or to otherwise dismiss the charges. The preliminary hearing was set for the afternoon of Oct. 15.

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