Earlier this year, 42-year-old Joseph Scott Carter sold blankets on the corner of Highway 66 and Main Street in Longmont.
Boulder County Sheriff's deputies arrested him on Monday afternoon while he was walking along the Peak-to-Peak Highway. A spokesperson for the sheriff's office says it appeared as if Carter had been living in the area for several weeks.
Carter's Tuesday afternoon court appearance was brief, but he clearly angered the public defender's office when he chose not to remain silent, at least for a few seconds.
When the judge listed off the charges he now faces, which includes a pair of second-degree kidnapping charges, Carter had something to add.
"Your Honor, you'll also need to add levying war against the United States," he said.
A representative with the public defender's office immediately advised Carter to keep quiet.
There were no cameras allowed in the court room, and no photos of Carter have been released because sheriff's deputies say they are still doing identification line-ups, possibly with one of the victims.
One of his coworkers says Carter was homeless and acted erratically.
"I really feel sorry for him, he has had a lot of problems and stuff with situations in his life, it's just a real sad situation," Susanne Walker said. "He's mental; he's got issues, no doubt."
Walker says four months ago, Carter came to work covered in chain-mail armor and carrying knives. Walker says he told her he was mad at a fellow coworker and wanted to kill him. She says he then proceeded to walk down Main Street clad in metal.
"I've watched episodes of 'Cops' but I've never ever seen anything like this," she said.
Longmont Police arrested Carter before he confronted his coworker.
When officers approached Carter in February, "Carter continued to repeat that he was going to kill [the co-worker], and nothing we did would stop that," according to a Longmont Police report.
Carter also told police, "You should just charge me with murder because that is what I am going to do when they let me out."
One officer noted, "Based on my prior experiences with Joe, I know him to be antagonistic and unstable. Joe is very scared of any government employee. The last time I met Joe, he was forecasting a government collapse."
Carter served 27 days in jail
for making the threat.
Walker hopes this time is different.
"I think they need to give him some serious help on this instead of just setting him free," she said.
Court records released on Tuesday did not offer an explanation for Carter's alleged actions over the weekend, but they did supply a little bit of a better picture as to what happened.
According to the records, both victims were hiking along Como Creek when they sat down. Carter who, investigators say was dressed in camouflage, approached the couple and "threatened to kill" the male victim by "pointing a rifle at him."
The suspect then "directed him over to a tree and bound him to the tree using a pair of handcuffs." The woman was then led away from the scene.
He then "tied her to a tree using a piece of chain from around his neck.... He had also loosely fastened a piece of duct tape across her mouth."
"Both [victims] stated that this male was making negative comments about Obama being President and made several comments about being in a militia group," court records said.
According to officials, the man freed himself and ran for help, and the assailant released the woman. The man suffered bruised wrists and a cut leg and the woman was unharmed.
The names of the victims have not been released.
Carter is due back in court on Thursday. This is when the Boulder County District Attorney's office is expected to file charges.
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