CUPD arrests man for assaulting CU NightRide driver

The sign outside CUPD headquarters. (Robert R. Denton/CU Independent File)

At around 11:00 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 11, a woman driving for CU NightRide reported an alleged sexual assault when 29-year-old Ashten Talley got into her car. NightRide is a student-operated nightly transportation service for CU students.

The driver had dropped off students on Kittredge Loop Drive, between Fiske Planetarium and Kittredge Central Hall at approximately 10:15 p.m. Afterwards, an unknown man, later identified as Talley, entered the driver’s car.

Talley refused to leave the car after the driver told him to get out. He prevented her from using her phone while threatening her if she called for help. Talley then proceeded to try to fondle and kiss the driver.

The driver then drove the suspect to the Shell Gas station at 29th Street and Baseline Road. There Talley left the car and continued on foot, headed east on Baseline. Talley told the driver and a gas station attendant that his name is Ashten.

Late this morning, Talley turned himself in at the lobby of the Boulder Police Department. CU Police arrested him on charges of first-degree criminal trespass, physical harassment, computer crime for accessing the driver’s phone and second-degree criminal tampering of the phone.

While further investigation determined that Talley touched the victim, CUPD has stated that there is no evidence that the actions were sexual and they do not meet the definition of a sex crime.

This is the third reported event of an assault on or near campus within the last three weeks. CUPD is still investigating two incidents of women who were accosted on University Hill last week.

The first incident occurred Thursday, Oct. 4 when a man grabbed and choked an adult women who was walking home from a party. The suspect forced the woman into a vehicle with two other men; she was held at gunpoint by the suspect in the backseat. After hearing sirens, the suspects let the woman go.

The second incident happened Saturday, Oct. 6 when a group of 4 or 5 adult women were approached by a vehicle. The front seat passenger asked them where they were going, saying that the men in the vehicle were going to go with the women. The passenger then produced a handgun before the vehicle drove off.

Shanon Aulabaugh, public information officer for Boulder Police and Fire Departments, said “the two incidents on the Hill have similarities and could be related.”

Aulabaugh stated she does not have information on the NightRide assault and cannot comment on if it is also related with the other incidents.

Chief of CU Police Department Doreen Jokerst said in an email, “last night’s incident and other recent criminal acts on University Hill remind us that traumatic events happen everyday in all communities, and the CU Boulder community is no exception.”

Contact Breaking News Editor Robert Tann at robert.tann@colorado.edu.

Robert Tann

Breaking News Editor

Robert Tann is a Sophomore student studying journalism. He loves to write and tell stories. Outside of the CUI, he enjoys travelling and vlogging his experiences.

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