Boulder police: Surveillance cameras captured suspects in alley attack outside Nitro Club

Boulder police investigating three similar attacks

BOULDER, Colo. - Boulder police have released surveillance pictures of three men wanted in an assault outside the Nitro Club.

Police say the Nitro Club assault is similar to three other recent attacks, where two to three men jumped other men, often during robberies or attempted robberies.

The string of assaults span from Nov. 1 to Nov. 27, with two happening on or near the Pearl Street Mall, one on University Hill and the fourth on the Boulder Creek Path.

A key obstacle for police has been long delays in victims reporting three of the four attacks.

In the Nov. 17 attack near the Nitro club, the victims waited 35 hours before calling police. In a Nov. 1 attack near 10th and Marine streets, the victims didn't call police until 19 hours later.

"We have a much better chance of finding the suspects if we get there right away," Boulder police spokeswoman Kim Kobel said.

Some of the attacks happened in the downtown area, where  police have extra officers patrolling around bars and restaurants on busy weekends. In response to the recent attacks, police are adding even more patrols.

"If people are assaulted, get somewhere safe and call 911 right away," Kobel said. "There are officers in that area that can get to you quickly, if you call 911." She added that people who see something that appears suspicious, but they're not sure, shouldn't be reluctant to call 911.

The attack captured by a surveillance camera happened in an alley behind the Nitro Club in the 1100 block of Lawry Lane at about 2:30 p.m. on Nov. 17.

A 23-year-old male victim and a male friend told police they were walking down the alley when a man approached them and asked for a cigarette. The victims gave the man one.

As the two friends turned to walk away, a man with blond hair tackled the 23-year-old victim and a second man began punching him.

The third man grabbed the victim's friend, who was trying to intervene, police said. The attackers then left.

The 23-year-old suffered serious injuries and was taken to the hospital. The second victim was not hurt, police said.

Police said the surveillance video shows the attackers walking west on Lawry Lane, just after the assaults. The victims walked in the opposite direction.

Police said the blond suspect appears to be wearing a scarf, jeans and possibly cowboy boots. The other two suspects have dark hair and clothing. A fourth man, seen on the right of the photos, is a bystander and was not involved in the assaults. Police said they have questioned the bystander, who was not able to identify the attackers.

Anyone who recognizes the attackers is asked to contact Detective Chuck Heidel at 303-441-3339.

Here are details on the other three attacks.

At about 1 a.m. on Nov. 1. a 21-year-old man was walking with friends near 10th and Marine streets when he stopped to chat with an acquaintance. As the man ran to catch up with his friends, he was knocked to the ground by two men, who searched his pocket for his wallet, police said.

One of his friends heard the commotion and rushed back to help, and the attackers ran off. The victim was treated at a hospital for minor injuries.

Witnesses couldn't provide detailed descriptions, saying the men may have been white and were wearing dark clothing and possibly beanies, police said.

Another attack happened between 11 p.m. on Nov. 9 and 1 a.m. on Nov. 10. Three male friends were walking near 11th and Pearl streets when a man rushed up and tackled one of the men, knocking him into his two friends so they all fell down, police said.

The attacker searched two of the fallen men's pockets for their wallets, police said. One victim was treated at a hospital.

The attacker was described as a white man with blond hair who stood about 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighed between 180 to 190 pounds. He was wearing large gauge earrings, a gray hooded sweatshirt and a black beanie.

A victim said the man had a crooked nose that appeared to have been broken in the past.

The most recent attack happened about 6:30 a.m. Tuesday as a man was jogging on the Boulder Creek Path near Third Street and Arapahoe Avenue.

The jogger said he was stopped by a man asking for assistance and then two other men appeared. The trio attacked the jogger and went through his pockets, police said.

The victim fought back and may have seriously injured one of the attackers in his left eye, police said.

The three attackers are between 25 and 30 years of age. Police gave these additional descriptions:

  • The main attacker who approached the jogger was described as a white man who was 6 feet tall and weighed 225 pounds. He had a brown beard and was wearing a beanie cap, a flannel jacket and steel-toed construction boots. The man may have an injured left eye.
  • The second suspect is a white man who is about 5 feet 8 inches tall with medium build and a closely cropped brown beard. The man was wearing construction-type pants and a baseball cap. He may have injured his right hand.
  • The third suspect was a dark-skinned white or Hispanic man, who spoke Spanish. He was 5 feet 6 inches tall, had a sparse, black mustache and was wearing jeans, a large-patterned shirt over a hoodie and colored Van-style shoes.

Police asked anyone with information about these attacks to call the Boulder Police Department Detective Section at 303-441-3330 or the Tip Line at 303-441-1974.

Those who have information but wish to remain anonymous can call the Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or 1-800-444-3776. Tips can also be submitted through the Crime Stoppers website at www.crimeshurt.com. Those submitting tips through Crime Stoppers that lead to the arrest and filing of charges on a suspect may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000 from Crime Stoppers.

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