LONGMONT, Colo. (KDVR) — A federal prison employee has been arrested as an accomplice in the murder of a Longmont postal worker, Jason Schaefer.
Andrew Ritchie, 34, was arrested Tuesday afternoon at the Englewood Federal Correctional Institution in Littleton, where he works, according to the arrest affidavit released Wednesday.
He is in custody at the Boulder County Jail, where he’s facing a charge of complicity to commit murder in the first degree.
Ritchie’s first court appearance hasn’t been set yet.
On Wednesday, Schaefer’s family, friends and coworkers gathered at the mailboxes where he was murdered. Many shared a sense of relief with Ritchie now behind bars.
“I knew that she didn’t do this alone,” Brandy Brackett, with USPS, told FOX31. “I knew there was somebody there supporting her in this decision. We really wanted him to be caught.”
Brackett worked with Schaefer for many years and became close friends. She was not surprised by the news of Ritchie’s involvement and arrest.
“I was extremely happy to know that the person that helped her with this is now somebody that’s going to be held accountable also,” Brackett said. “That made me extremely happy.”
What the arrest documents say
Devan Schreiner, identified in the affidavit as Schaefer’s ex-wife, is facing a first-degree murder charge.
According to the arrest affidavit, Ritchie and Schreiner had some type of relationship.
“He said they are just friends and have been for 13 years now and they only talk here and there,” according to arrest documents.
However, audio files obtained from a search warrant stated differently. Ritchie allegedly said the following on Oct. 5:
“l love you,” and “hope the route went well.”
The arrest affidavit states that Schreiner was involved in a group chat on Snapchat. On Oct. 11, at 2:01 p.m. she sent the following:
“5UM. I’m throwing a party in the woods and it’s a BYOS.”
At 2:01:36 p.m., she also wrote, “Bring your own shovels.”
During an interview with police, Ritchie stated that when he dropped Schreiner off at work on the day of the shooting, she stated, “today is the day,” and “I have everything I need.” The arrest affidavit also stated that Ritchie shared that Schreiner told him multiple times of plans to kill Schaefer and he had to “talk her down.”
When Ritchie’s truck was searched, investigators found a Smith and Wesson 1911 with a loaded magazine in the center console. A box of 9 mm ammunition was also found and taken as evidence.