New details have emerged about an alleged slaying that took place on Haycamp Mesa the night of Jan. 2-3.
Kevin Wade Folsom, 39, was arrested on Jan. 3 and later charged with first-degree murder in the death of James Box Jr., 42, a Southern Ute tribal member from Ignacio.
Previously, Montezuma County Sheriff Steve Nowlin said he was alerted to the shooting death Jan. 3 by a citizen who said he’d heard about it. Folsom was pulled over and arrested, and deputies later found the body after a ground search off Forest Road 557, a spur of the Haycamp Road in the San Juan National Forest. He had been fatally shot in the head.
According to court records, Folsom, Box, and Box’s wife had driven together to Haycamp Mesa and were partying in an area of Indian Ridge Road. Meth use was involved.
According to new information that The Journal discovered in an arrest affidavit by sheriffs’ Detective Tyson Cox, Folsom reportedly left the scene of the death, then allegedly attempted to make arrangements with the citizen to “dispose” of Box’s body. The victim’s clothing had been removed.
In an interview with detective Cox, “Folsom admitted to shooting James Box Jr.,” according to the affidavit, but claimed he had already been shot.
The report states that according to Folsom, the three had gone to Haycamp to party and use meth. Folsom said he heard a gun go off during a physical fight between Box and his wife.
Folsom said he did not know who had the gun or who had brought it, but he said he observed Box “bleeding profusely.” Folsom stated he picked up the gun off the ground and shot Box in the head “to put him out of his misery,” according to the affidavit.
When asked by why he did not call 911, Folsom said he did not want to get arrested for the drugs and shooting, and did not believe Box would survive that long because he’d lost a lot of blood.
The Journal has not yet confirmed that there was another wound. On Wednesday, Montezuma County Coroner George Deavers said he could not release information on the how many wounds there were until Box’s autopsy was received and released, which is expected soon. Nowlin said he could not comment on the question of a second wound because of the pending court case.
Folsom was originally charged with second-degree murder, but the charge was changed to first-degree murder by District Attorney Will Furse. A protection order was issued for the person who reported the crime and Box’s wife.
Folsom also was also charged with possessing of a weapon as a previous offender, tampering with a deceased human body, tampering with physical evidence, possessing a controlled substance, committing a crime of violence and being a habitual criminal.
Folsom, of Montezuma County, has a history that includes a drug charge, escape attempts, burglary and theft, according to the Colorado Department of Corrections. In 2008, he was charged with first-degree burglary in La Plata County and was sentenced to a 10-year prison term to the Sterling Correctional Facility. He was released on parole in 2014.
During a court appearance on Jan. 4, District Court Judge Douglas Walker imposed a $500,000 bond on Folsom. He remains in custody at the Montezuma County Detention Center. A preliminary hearing in the case is set for April 6. Walker denied a media gag order on the case requested by the defense.