Rangers Nab Felon
Friday Night on Rim Rock Drive 8-28-2009
Park rangers arrested Jason R. Mathis, age 30, (DOB 1/23/78), of Fruita, CO, on Friday evening, August 28, at 6:00 p.m. on a felony charge of possession of a stolen vehicle, as well as other charges including reckless driving, driving while under the influence of alcohol, destroying federal property (a Colorado National Monument sign) with his vehicle while driving down the DS Road from Glade Park onto Rim Rock Drive, leaving the crash site, and driving with a suspended license.
Mathis abandoned his vehicle on Rim Rock Drive near Red Canyon. A passing motorist reported the vehicle leaving the crash site on DS Road. A park ranger located the crashed and abandoned vehicle and ran the license plates. Mathis was found walking along the roadway by the park ranger and he initiated the arrest. The vehicle was reported stolen in Montrose, CO, approximately two years ago. The vehicle’s VIN numbers had been mostly destroyed, which constitutes another pending felony offense.
Two other Colorado National Monument park rangers arrived at the scene and assisted with the arrest, took possession of the stolen vehicle, and supported the transport of the felon into Mesa County’s jail.
Other federal charges are pending as the investigation led by Colorado National Monument’s park rangers continues. Mathis has a long criminal history including DUIs, multiple traffic offenses, child abuse, various weapons offenses, various drug and alcohol convictions, and parole violations.
Mathis will have his initial appearance in federal court on Monday, August 31.