Travis Forbes, a self-described suspect in the April 1disappearance of Kenia Monge
, nineteen, has been arrested -- but not for a crime related to Monge. Instead, he was busted in Austin, Texas, for car theft.
According to the Wheat Ridge Police Department, the car Forbes was driving had been reported stolen on Wednesday. Is it possible he was on the run?
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The Wheat Ridge force knows Forbes is a person of interest in a Denver case, but is unaware of any connection between the car theft and the Monge matter. Still, plenty of disquieting information surfaced about Forbes in the days and weeks since she vanished. Here's our narrative from the April 20 post linked above:
Monge partied hard at Denver's 24K nightclub on April 1 judging by the photos taken that night, and her behavior afterward. First, she's said to have left her cell phone and purse behind. Then she was seen walking with a homeless man, after which she was given a ride in a van by Forbes, who was initially described in news accounts as a good Samaritan. He said he dropped off the enormously drunk Monge at a gas station on the 500 block of Speer, where she left with a third man, this one of Asian descent -- and she hasn't been seen since.
After that initial flurry of reports, however, a different portrait of Forbes began to emerge. According to 7News, police searched his van, which appeared to have new carpeting, and went to a bakery where he rents space, reportedly to manufacture gluten-free granola bars called "Forbies." There, the owner told cops the security system in the space had been turned off that evening -- and video showed Forbes had done so while wearing what looked like a latex glove. On top of that, an employee at a business next door said he saw several men burning something in a 55 gallon barrel behind the bakery late on April 1. Police grabbed a barrel and a yellow rubber glove as evidence. And then there was the large cooler Forbes was seen transporting into the bakery the next day. The Denver Post reports that it had a broken latch and was being held closed with duct tape.
Forbes's record is far from spotless. He admitted to 9News that he spent three years behind bars for a burglary conviction, claiming that he used to be a drug addict and would steal Demerol from dentists offices. He'd also racked up a shoplifting beef and was stopped recently for driving with expired license plates.
But Forbes seems to have left out a few of his more sordid busts. The Post notes that he was arrested as a teenager for breaking into sixteen homes and businesses in Fort Collins. Among the finds police made were several pairs of stolen panties, including two pairs with the letter "M" written on them with a marker and big rips presumably inflicted by Forbes.
Another crime involving women: He was convicted of third-degree assault after throwing rocks at two female joggers back in 2004.
At this writing, no charges have been filed against Forbes. But few would be shocked if that changes before long.
Of course, charges are likely to follow Forbes's bust in Texas, where he remains in custody -- just not the ones many observers were expecting.
More from our Follow That Story archive: "Kenia Monge disappearance: A heartbreaking Mother's Day wish."