A Pitkin County man admitted Wednesday to taking extreme measures when he retaliated against a hunter who lawfully killed a bear on a next-door ranch last fall.
Thomas Andersen, 69, pleaded guilty to crime unsuccessful arson and misdemeanor disorderly conduct in Pitkin County District Court on Wednesday in exchange for a plea deal. The terms of the deal call for the crime conviction to be wiped from Andersen’s record after two years provided he is not charged with some other crime during that time.
Andersen is regular to be sentenced in June, when he could receive time in the Pitkin County Jail or probation. He did not answer his phone or respond to a text message sent Wednesday seeking comment.
Andersen, who lives on Lower Brush Creek Road near Snowmass Village in unorganized Pitkin County, confronted the hunter the evening of Sept. 7 after witnessing the bear killing on the Brush Creek Ranch next door to his home, according to a Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office report. The hunter told sheriff’s deputies that Andersen was “in a rage” and began screaming at him, his two young sons and the ranch caretaker despite the fact that the hunter had a valid bear-hunting permit and permission to hunt on the property. Andersen called the boys — who were 5 and 7 years old at the time — “sons of bitches” and “little bastards” and told them their father was a “murderer,” the report states.
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