Man accused of threatening car-lot employees with vehicle
A 47-year-old man who made an unusual appearance in a Mesa County courtroom on Wednesday is being held on a high cash-only bond, following allegations that he drove a BMW off a used car lot and threatened lot employees with the vehicle as he drove off.
Mark Hoover was often smiling and laughing during a court appearance in which he was advised of possible charges of aggravated robbery, motor vehicle theft and menacing.
An arrest affidavit for Hoover alleges that he went to Kissner Motors, 2584 U.S. Highway 6&50, on July 18, asking an associate if he could test drive a 2013 BMW 328i, valued at just less than $20,000. When Hoover could not produce a valid driver’s license, an employee drove with him to his house to retrieve a license, according to the report. When they returned to the car lot, and the ID Hoover produced turned out to not be a valid driver’s license, employees told Hoover he could not take the car.
At some point, witnesses told police. Hoover got in the driver’s seat of the car, shut the door, and rolled up the window. Employees, according to the report, told Hoover to get out, even standing in front of the car with their hands on the hood with the engine running.
“Mark put the vehicle in drive and began attempting to push (the employee) out of the way with the front end of the car,” an investigator wrote. “(The employee) stated when he was in front of the car, Mark would repeatedly rev the engine and push him backwards.”
When the employee stepped aside fearing for his safety, Hoover sped out of the car lot, according to police.
Mesa County District Attorney Dan Rubinstein sought a high cash-only bond for Hoover on Wednesday, often talking over Hoover, who was smiling and outright laughing during court proceedings. He made numerous odd gestures, and often tapped on the microphone in front of him.
Mesa County Court Judge Craig Henderson said he was familiar with Hoover, based on prior court appearances, and was concerned for his mental fitness during his appearance. But, Henderson said it wasn’t appropriate for Hoover to be out of custody, and issued him a $50,000 cash-only bond in his case.
Hoover also was advised Wednesday in a separate case, where he’s accused of a sex assault that dates to 1994. Details of that alleged assault were not immediately available, as Hoover was issued a summons in the case.