Matthew Tello's schmucky explanation for trying to strangle cop: "I'm drunk, it's my birthday"
Over our many years of chronicling schmucks, we've noticed that a lot of them were blitzed when they committed the acts that got our attention. But while that might be a good excuse under certain circumstances, it apparently didn't persuade a certain Boulder police officer.
Who Matthew Tello allegedly tried to strangle.
Around 6:40 p.m. on February 17, according to a Boulder police document on view below (it's one of three issued in the case), officers were called to an address on the 3200 block of 28th Street in regard to a report of criminal mischief. Specifically, the owner of a car said her vehicle had been damaged by the passenger of a bicycle ridden by a man later identified as Tello, a 24-year-old CU-Boulder student.
A photo of Tello on his bike.
The owner told the officer she was driving her Kia station wagon out of a KFC parking lot when she heard yelling coming from Tello and the passenger, who was riding on the handlebars. The passenger jumped off the bike, the report says, and began banging his hands on the outside of the woman's car before the two split.
At that point, the woman was too rattled by what happened to come up with a good description of either the cyclist or his pal. But fortunately for her, a couple of witnesses behind her -- a father and son -- got a good look at them and were able to add details of what happened; they saw the passenger kick the car, too, for instance. And then, as if on cue, Tello reportedly returned to ask about a wallet that was apparently lost in the midst of the mayhem. But this item was forgotten when one of the witnesses told Tello (said to be "very intoxicated") that the cops had been called.
He got pissed and took off, but he didn't get far, encountering a female officer in a dirt lot a couple of blocks away.
Where things got even weirder.
A Tello portrait.
The Boulder Daily Camera reports that Tello taunted the officer so loudly he could be heard over the police radio when the officer pushed its emergency button. By the time another BPD rep arrived, the first cop and Tello were engaged in a fight that didn't end until officer number two tackled the suspect to the ground.
Later, the female officer reported that she'd tried to handcuff Tello, but after successfully securing one hand, he used the other to grab her by the throat and squeeze. Moreover, the choking apparently continued even after she threatened to shoot him and began reaching for her gun.
When he was finally subdued, Tello offered an explanation for his behavior: "I'm drunk, it's my birthday."
In recognition of this special occasion, the officers arrested Tello on suspicion of first- and second-degree assault, resisting arrest, being an accessory to a crime, driving under the influence (on his bike), obstructing a police officer and felony menacing. But there are no charges related to damaging the car -- the incident that set the chain of events in motion -- since Tello wasn't the one doing the banging and kicking. That was his passenger, who has yet to be found.
Now that Tello's sobered up, he's apparently developed laryngitis. Look below to see a larger version of his mug shot and the aforementioned police report.
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