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Wife taken hostage by husband in Boulder says he has severe pain, depression, anxiety

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Posted at 11:49 AM, Oct 25, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-25 13:49:38-04

BOULDER, Colo. — The man accused of holding his wife hostage in a Boulder hair salon on Wednesday struggles with severe pain from a work accident, depression and anxiety and was thinking of killing himself in the store, according to new details from an arrest affidavit. His wife told authorities they are separated, but she is still “madly in love with him,” the documents read.

Fidel Jaramillo, 45, of Thornton, has been charged with first-degree kidnapping with forcible seizure, menacing with a real or represented weapon, third-degree assault, possession of a weapon by a previous offender, prohibited use of a weapon and domestic violence.

He had pleaded guilty to felony menacing in Jefferson County in 2014.

Police were dispatched to Hair Rage International salon at The Shops at Table Mesa in Boulder at 10:13 a.m. Wednesday after receiving a report of a man with a gun attacking a woman.

According to an arrest affidavit, the owner of the salon told authorities that the man, who has been identified as Jaramillo of Thornton, came into the business and demanded that everybody leave except for his wife, who works there. He pointed a gun at several people, who fled the salon. 

A client said she saw Jaramillo push his wife to the floor.

The store owner told police that when he had walked into the store, his wife seemed concerned.

The Boulder Crisis Team Bomb Squad attempted to try to contact Jaramillo by calling the store phone, as well as his wife’s phone. He was initially angry at the “system” and “you,” he said, but authorities do not know what he was referencing, according to the affidavit. He was described as “irate” and swore before ending the calls. Officials also spoke with the woman on the phone.

The Crisis Tam learned that Jaramillo had somehow been injured at work, and had chronic neck and back pain, as well as depression and anxiety. He had been taking medications for the pain.

At one point, authorities were unable to get in touch with the couple for a long time, despite several calls and texts to the woman’s phone.

Eventually, the man picked up the phone and seemed calmer, according to the affidavit.

Boulder police asked Thornton police to visit the man’s parents’ home, where he lives with them. They connected him with his mother over the phone and she worked to continue to calm him down.  

After some time, he agreed to surrender.

Jaramillo was ultimately arrested at 12:30 p.m. after placing his weapon on the ground, walking out of the store and laying down on the ground.

Officers detected the smell of alcohol on his breath and noted his red, watery eyes. He was taken to a local hospital, where he asked for pain medication, but because he had no new injuries, the hospital discharged him and he returned to the Boulder Police Department, according to the affidavit.

He said he was intoxicated and elected to speak to an attorney before an interview.

He was transported to the Boulder County Jail.

Authorities also interviewed his wife, who said they have been married for 14 years but separated five years ago and had been living apart. They still arrange a date each week and she said she is “madly in love with him,” according to the affidavit. They talk over the phone and text every day, she said.

The wife told authorities that her husband has medical issues stemming from the work accident and can’t escape the pain. He’s talked about suicide, she said.

The morning of the incident, they had breakfast together.

After he came into the salon and demanded the others leave, she saw him drinking Malibu Rum. They talked about his pain and how he didn’t want to go to prison, but said he was either “going to prison or going to die in the salon.” The wife said she was never afraid he’d hurt her, but feared that he would kill himself in front of her.

The woman said Jaramillo is an alcoholic, but had been sober for a while before he recently relapsed because of his pain.

He started carrying a gun because his car had been broken into in Denver and he thought somebody was following him, she told authorities, according to the affidavit.

Detectives at the scene of the crime found a fully loaded handgun and cigarette butts in the laundry room, where Jaramillo had been during the crime. They also located dozens of rounds of ammunition and three extra magazines in the bathroom.