Key suspect in Blee case arrested

Stephen Skufca lands in jail on charges unrelated to case of missing girl

One of the three suspects named in the 20-year-old Marie Blee missing persons case was arrested by the Moffat County Sheriff's Department for criminal menacing and possession of a controlled substance.



Stephen Skufca, 40, was arrested Thursday night on a warrant for criminal menacing, reckless endangerment and reckless driving after it was alleged that he tried to hit Timothy Stauffer with his car. While the warrant was being served the Moffat County Sheriff's Department found over an ounce of marijuana, over an eighth of an ounce of methamphetamine, large amount of money and scales were also found.



While Skufca was being booked into the jail, he was found to be in possession of suspected methamphetamine.



Subsequently, he was charged with possession of a schedule II controlled substance with intent to sell, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, first-degree introduction of contraband into the jail and possession of drug paraphernalia. Three felonies and a petty offense, according to the arrest warrant.



Skufca is currently being held in the Moffat County Jail on $30,000 bail. $10,000 for the drug charges and $20,000 for the charges on the warrant. The warrant asks for a higher bail than normal because of Skufca's long criminal past.



"Skufca has been charged on April 16, 2000 with witness tampering and is on probation for that crime, stated the warrant. "Skufca has shown a tendency towards violence in the past. Skufca has shown a tendency towards drug use and alcohol use in the past. Skufca has shown that he cannot abide by bond restrictions in the past. Skufca has shown that he cannot abide by Temporary Restraining Order conditions in the past. With these concerns, the affiant feels that a higher than normal bond is appropriate to ensure that no further violence or threats occur." Skufca's criminal history is long, over 47 different past charges were listed on the warrant, including assault, felony with a firearm, menacing, intimidation, five driving under the influence charges and several possession and distribution of marijuana charges.



The sheriff's department investigator was pleased with the arrest.



"I'm pleased to get any person in Craig who is selling drugs off the street," said Warner.



Warner wouldn't comment on whether they would be attempting to obtain information about the Marie Blee case while Skufca was in the jail.



Skufca was one of the original suspects named in the disappearance of 16-year-old Marie Blee in 1974. Blee disappeared from a party in Craig after a dance in Hayden. The Marie Blee task force, made up of officers from the Moffat County Sheriff's Department, The Craig Police Department, The Routt County Sheriff's Department, The Steamboat Springs Police Department and the Hayden Police Department reconfirmed Skufca as a suspect in the case since the case was made a priority over a year ago.



Skufca will appear in the Moffat County Court Oct. 3 at 8:30 a.m.

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