Man pleads guilty to choking woman
Vail, CO Colorado
EAGLE ” An illegal immigrant who tried to strangle his ex-girlfriend to death faces up to three years in prison after pleading guilty to a felony Wednesday, authorities said.
Gustavo Adolfo Aparicio-Romero, 19, of Honduras, saw his ex-girlfriend, 21, also of Honduras, in Nottingham Park and approached her with a knife around noon Aug. 1, Avon police Detective Paul Arnold said.
Aparicio-Romero then tried to drag her to his car, but she broke free and ran back toward her mother’s Avon apartment, Arnold said.
Aparicio-Romero caught up to her in a stairwell in the complex and tried to strangle her, Arnold said.
The ex-girlfriend, whose named is being withheld because she is a victim of domestic violence, said Aparicio-Romero stopped strangling her when she heard someone come in the stairwell, Arnold said.
Chief Brian Kozak saw Aparicio-Romero getting into his car on the west side of Nottingham Park, drew his gun and arrested Aparicio-Romero , Arnold said.
The ex-girlfriend had scrapes and scratches on her neck, bite marks and a bump on her head, Arnold said.
Aparicio-Romero pleaded guilty to felony menacing and misdemeanor third-degree assault and domestic violence at a court hearing Wednesday.
Aparicio-Romero could have gone to jail for five to 16 years if a jury convicted him of the original charges filed by prosecutors, said Jim Fahrenholtz, whose law firm represented Aparicio-Romero.
Now, Aparicio-Romero could get probation, Fahrenholtz said.
Police’s original charges against Aparicio-Romero included attempted first-degree murder, Arnold said.
Eagle County District Attorney Mark Hurlbert did not pursue that charge because he did not think he could prove it. Police may have had probable cause to make an arrest on that charge, he said.
“We have a much higher standard for proof: beyond a reasonable doubt,” Hurlbert said.
Aparicio-Romero, who is being held in Eagle County jail, is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 5.
Staff Writer Steve Lynn can be reached at 748-2931 or email@example.com.