Senior News Writer
david lesh mugshot

David Lesh, arrested on felony and misdemeanor assault charges April 17. Photo: courtesy Summit County Sheriff’s Office

The Inertia

David Lesh, a self-described “washed up skier” and founder of clothing company Virtika, has made a career out of headline-grabbing. Reviled by many for a proven tendency to attract attention, he’s grabbed the spotlight once again — but perhaps accidentally.

Lesh, a resident of Colorado, has garnered notoriety for controversial social media posts, antics he has characterized as “publicity stunts,” and snowmobiling misdeeds. Now, he’s been arrested for allegedly assaulting another snowmobiler.

The purported incident occurred near the Spring Creek Trailhead outside Steamboat Springs, Colo., on March 25, a news release by the Summit County Sheriff’s Office said. Responding officers found the snowmobiler with injuries to the head and neck. The victim reportedly captured footage of the alleged attack on a GoPro.

Lesh was no longer at the location when the officers arrived, but witnesses corroborated the victim’s recollection of events. On April 17, authorities issued a warrant for Lesh’s arrest on one felony and one misdemeanor assault charge. And on April 24, Lesh arrived at the Glendale Police Department and turned himself in.

Police took Lesh into custody “without incident,” processed him, and released him on a $7,500 bond, according to the news release.

The alleged assault is the latest scandal to blight Lesh’s reputation. An extensive 2021 profile in The New Yorker characterized him as “the most hated man in the Rockies.”

His record includes snowmobile-related offenses that have cost him in fines and community service, and incidents like his now-famous plane crash (called into question as a potential publicity stunt). In another controversial move, Lesh published an Instagram post in which he appeared to defecate into Colorado’s pristine Maroon Lake. The post was later debunked as Photoshopped, but Lesh still drew charges in conjunction with the visit.

When asked for comment, Lesh in a direct message to The Inertia said, “(I) would love to tell my side but can’t for obvious legal reasons.”


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