Decision coming in Aspen CO deaths | AspenTimes.com
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Decision coming in Aspen CO deaths

Wyatt Haupt Jr.
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN ” The 9th Judicial District Attorney’s Office has apparently made a decision regarding the carbon monoxide-related deaths of a family at a home outside Aspen.

A press conference is set for 1:30 p.m. April 1 at its Aspen office. The office is located at the Pitkin County Court building.

At that time, District Attorney Martin C. Beeson will announce if and how he intends to proceed concerning the deaths of the Lofgren family, according to a press release issued late Friday afternoon.

The office offered no further details. Chief Deputy District Attorney Arnold P. Mordkin, who heads the Aspen office, declined to comment.

Prosecutors seemingly have three avenues that they could pursue. They could elect to drop the case, file criminal charges or bring the matter before a grand jury.

Should a grand jury convene it would be up to the group to decide if someone should be charged with a crime in the incident that claimed four lives.

The Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office launched an investigation into the deaths shortly after the bodies were discovered by friends in a bedroom of the home at 10 Popcorn Lane, one day after Thanksgiving.

An autopsy determined Parker Lofgren, 39; his wife, Caroline, 42; and their two children, Owen, 10, and Sophie, 8, died of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless and colorless gas that is created when fuels such as gasoline, natural gas and propane burn incompletely.

It is poisonous and can kill cells of the body. It also replaces oxygen in the bloodstream, which leads to suffocation.

The home was not fitted with a carbon monoxide detector, authorities said. The finding was made during the investigation.

A disconnected exhaust pipe that stretched from a boiler to the chimney flue appears to have been the way the gas was able to infiltrate the home.

It was determined that a polyvinyl chloride pipe, more commonly known as PVC, was not hooked up at the “elbow” point where it was to allow the gas from the boiler to flow to the flue and out of the home.

The results of the investigation were turned over in February to the District Attorney’s Office in Aspen, which has been reviewing the case.

Parker Lofgren was managing partner and co-founder of St. Charles Capital, a Denver-based investment bank that specializes in “middle-market” transactions. He joined four other investment bankers to form the company in 2005.

His wife, Caroline, was active with numerous charitable groups. Their children attended St. Anne’s Episcopal School in Denver.

whaupt@aspentimes.com


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