Yampa man faces September sentencing

Gary E. Salazar

— Since the evening of Dec. 2, 2000, Warren Dean Hillbolt III has been behind bars at the Routt County Jail. Following a verdict last week, the Yampa man will remain in jail until he is sentenced in September for a felony assault charge.

Last week, a jury found Hillbolt, 34, guilty of first-degree assault for a shooting that occurred at his trailer that December evening. Hillbolt was on trial for attempted first-degree murder but was found guilty of the lesser charge. The trial lasted four days.

On Monday, Hillbolt returned to 14th Judicial District Judge Richard P. Doucette’s courtroom to set a sentencing date and discuss his $50,000 bond.

Hillbolt faces one to four years in jail and will be sentenced by Doucette at 11 a.m. Sept. 24.

As for Hillbolt’s bond, he will remain in custody at the Routt County Jail.

After the verdict was rendered last week, lawyers were not certain if Hillbolt’s bond could be reduced. After researching the issue, prosecutors determined Hillbolt cannot post bond.

“Because of the charges he was convicted of, he is not eligible to post bond,” Deputy District Attorney Elizabeth Wittemyer said.

Hillbolt was found guilty of the assault charge for shooting Jared Williams at Hillbolt’s trailer, 116400 Colorado 131. Because of the wound, Williams, 24, spent one night at Yampa Valley Medical Center.

During the trial, both Hillbolt and Williams testified. Ron Smith, Hillbolt’s attorney, argued his client shot Williams in self-defense. Prior to the shooting, Hillbolt had been assaulted twice by Williams. Because of the assaults, Williams suffered a back injury.

Assistant District Attorney David Waite argued Hillbolt planned the shooting, shot Williams out of anger and intended to kill him.

In the end, the jury decided Hillbolt did not shoot Williams after “deliberating” but “in the heat of passion.”

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