Friday, July 29, 2011

UPDATE:Armed Man Wearing Surgical Mask Robs Cedaredge Bank

By Matt Kroschel

BREAKING NEWS: "We have got our guys, and the money," Cedaredge Police Department acting spokesman Rob Fiedler told KREX NewsChannel 5 armed Robbery suspects caught in Mesa County.

Mesa County Sheriff officials say they have detained three people who may be linked to a string of armed robberies on the Western Slope. The three suspects were seen in a vehicle matching the suspects get-a-way truck.


The Cedaredge Police Department and other law enforcement agencies are on the hunt for a man they say robbed the Surface Creek Bank on South Grand Mesa Drive this morning.

A description was released of a 5-foot, 10-inch, white man with scrubby facial hair carrying a pistol and wearing a surgical mask. He further is described as wearing a red T-shirt and is outfitted with a backpack, according to the scanner. The man’s T-shirt has a Sherwin-Williams logo.

We do not know how much money was taken during the robbery. We are told he fled the scene in a dark green or black, older model GMC sports car heading north toward Grand Mesa, reports indicate.

Montrose’s Alpine Bank was robbed June 24 by a man with scrubby facial hair and wearing a surgical mask. The suspect in that robbery brandished a gun and got away with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Police believe he headed north on Highway 65 over the Grand Mesa. They tell us at this time they do not believe there was anyone else involved.

The Delta Police Department, Delta County Sheriff's Office, and Colorado State Patrol are assisting in the investigation.

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Thursday, July 28, 2011

UPDATE: Mesa County Man Dead After ATV Wreck On Grand Mesa

By Matt Kroschel

A 73- year old man from Mesa County is dead after an ATV crash on the Grand Mesa Thursday afternoon.

Mesa County Sheriff officials tell NewsChannel Five the man was alone when the accident happened.

NewsChannel Five has learned the man was a member of Western Slope ATV Association. The group was working on trails in the area when the accident occurred. Several members of that club are also Search and Rescue members and were already on the scene. Deputies with the MCSO responded along with the Mesa County Coroner.

The cororner said Thursday night his office will preform an autopsy to find a cause of death. We have learned the man was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.

The original call for help was overheard by deputies in the area over a Ham radio, since cell phones and normal radios did not work at the scene. The recovery operation was launched from the Leon Creek Trail Head. We are told the man's body was another five miles up the trail in the Leon creek drainage and Hightower Mountain. This is south east of Vega.

The name of the man has not been released and the details of the incident are still being investigated by authorities.

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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Biologists Go to Bat for a Colorado Species Facing a Deadly Problem

By Matt Kroschel

State biologists are taking extreme steps in the hope they can save bat populations in Colorado from a fast moving and deadly fungus spreading across the country. But their efforts are leaving thousands of caves closed to the public.

If the White-Nose Syndrome reaches Colorado bat populations, the effects on the agricultural industry could be devastating.

For Bats White Nose Syndrome is a death sentence. The syndrome attacks bats while they hibernate. In the eastern United States, it has already whipped out millions of bats, so far it has not reached caves in Glenwood, but experts are not taking any chances.

 Biologists with the Rocky Mtn. Region of the U.S. Forest Service have closed all caves and mine shafts on public land to people, a move they hope will help keep the fungus from spreading to the bat populations here.
At Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park in Glenwood Springs, thousands of tourists are taken deep into the dark caves the area is famous for. Although the closure does not effect privately owned caves, owners at the park tell NewsChannel Five they are taking extra steps to keep their bats safe.

U.S. Forest Service scientist Phil Nyland said the loss of the bats on the Western Slope would spell disaster for the agricultural industries in the state.

“One bat can eat 1,000 bats in one night, and if they are gone we will have huge increases in bugs that could be very bad for farmers,” he said.

Experts tell NewsChannel Five if you are going into caves anywhere it is very important to wash all of your gear and cloths before going into any other caves.

   The emergency cave closure in the area will last for the next year and scientists hope to know more about the syndrome.

For more information about what the cave closures and the syndrome go to:

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Armed Robber Hits GJ Bank, On The Run Now From Police

By Matt Kroschel

Police are investigating a bank robbery that happened late Tuesday morning in Grand Junction.

Authorities say just after 10:30, a man entered the U.S. Bank on F Road near the Mesa Mall. He showed a note indicating that he had a weapon and demanded money.

Police say he took an undisclosed amount of cash before running north from the bank. Nobody was injured during the incident.

Authorities are looking at surveillance video for possible leads.

The suspect is described as a white male with a thin build and short brown hair. He was last seen wearing a red shirt, tan pants or shorts, and a khaki cap with a logo.

Police are asking anyone with information to contact Crimestoppers at 241-STOP.


If you have a newstip or story idea call 242-5000 for the newsroom!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Kannah Creek Fire "Pretty Much Contained"

By Matt Kroschel

Firefighters may have gained the upper hand on a wildfire burning on the west face of the Grand Mesa. Around 125 firefighters are battling the Kannah Creek blaze, which has grown to more than 40 acres.

Fire officials say right now, the fire has died down, but they are continuing to set up control lines around the burn area, but no structures or resources are threatened at this point.

A special hotshot crew from Craig was called in to help on Monday, and they're also fighting the fire from the air with helicopters.

Officials say the chance for the fire to burn downhill towards homes is very low.

The fire moved fast, and we got crews on the ground and working. Right now the fire is pretty benign, said BLM Public Affairs Specialist Tom Alvarez

Kannah Creek Trail and trails leading to Carson Lake are closed.

A lightning strike is thought to be what started the fire.

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