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Jan 18, 2012 8:17 PM by Matt Stafford

Highway 50 homeless camper arrested

A man who's been living along Highway 50, near Fowler, is now under arrest. News 5 caught up with Roy Gleiter in December, after he had been in the area for a few months. He stopped in eastern Pueblo County last summer while making his way across the country; he had been there ever since.

Wednesday morning, Gleiter's situation changed.

When News 5 spoke to him in December, he told us he's already had a few run-ins with law enforcement during his travels.

"3,219 of them have threatened to throw me in (jail), throw "Mom" in the mental hospital, shoot my dogs or have them put to sleep, and throw away everything I own; for the criminal acts of sitting, standing, and sleeping," said Gleiter.

Now Gleiter is not on the side of the highway; he was arrested by State Patrol. Last week the Colorado Department of Transportation told Gleiter to move, but he refused. State Patrol stepped in Wednesday morning; they told him he could go to a shelter, or into custody. Gleiter chose to be arrested; on a charge of unlawful conduct on highway property.

At the Wayside Cross Mission, in Pueblo, they work to help people get out of homelessness; they tell us that Gleiter's choice is not an unusual decision.

"It is the smaller percentage of what we see, and what we do; but it's not surprising," says the mission's Director, Michelle Sandoval.

"Frankly, there are people in the world that are just living off the grid and they just don't want to follow any sort of schedule; they want to be independent, they don't want to follow any rules," says Sandoval.

Gleiter is being represented by Pueblo attorney Matt Martin; who's offered to defend him for free. Martin was out of town and couldn't immediately comment on Gleiter's arrest.

State Patrol says the woman Gleiter was with -- who he calls "mom" -- was taken to Parkview Medical Center for an evaluation.

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