Polluting the jury pool
December 31, 2008
I so appreciate the comments by APD officer Chip Seamans concerning the snowboard theft and its return by a third party who had unwittingly bought it from a stranger (“Well, no good deed goes unpunished, or does it?”, Dec. 29). While the sequence of events does seem somewhat unusual, there can be little doubt that Good Samaritan Mike Leonard thought he was doing the right thing when he personally reunited the board with its rightful owner, Bob McDonald, after having read about the theft in a local newspaper.
As a prospective juror in any upcoming trial, civil or criminal, I will keep in mind Sgt. Seamans’ prejudicial remarks: “The elements are certainly right for it [filing theft charges against Leonard]. The whole thing is suspicious. It’s under investigation.”
And as for the younger McDonald, who left town “so disillusioned with Aspen,” he must be very proud of his father’s paranoiac response to Leonard’s honorable gesture.
Whatever the outcome, the Aspen Police Department has acted prematurely and perhaps recklessly in handling this ongoing case, perhaps even polluting a local jury pool should the matter continue to trial.
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