News in brief
Aspen, CO Colorado
ASPEN – A judge ordered a Missouri Heights man on Tuesday to serve 12 months of unsupervised probation and perform 24 hours of public service as part of a plea deal connected to a weapons case.
Roger Earl McKean pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor charge of prohibited use of a weapon in exchange for prosecutor Richard Nedlin’s dismissal of one charge for carrying a concealed weapon without a permit.
McKean, 31, was cited by a Pitkin County sheriff’s deputy Nov. 16 after he was struck by a vehicle at the intersection of Highway 82 and Basalt Avenue. The prohibited use charge stemmed from McKean’s carrying the weapon while he was intoxicated.
The deputy, Jesse Steindler, discovered the loaded handgun on McKean at Aspen Valley Hospital, where he was being treated for injuries from the collision.
At Wednesday’s sentencing hearing in Pitkin County, McKean told Judge Erin Fernandez-Ely he didn’t realize that he had the gun on him. Earlier in the day, McKean, who is a ranch hand, had used it to put down a horse, according to a police report.
The judge waived the $50 fine.
“Getting hit by a car is probably as painful as it can be,” she said. “Good luck.”
ASPEN – Aspen police are looking for the culprit behind the defacement of three Aspen buildings.
Police believe that sometime either Monday night or Tuesday morning a person or people plastered Aspen street maps – touched up with black markings and illustrations of eyeballs – on the outside of the Aspen Art Museum, Pitkin County Library and a public restroom at Wagner Park.
Aspen police officer Peter Bauer is leading the investigation. He said the graffiti-like work is considered a crime of defacing property, as defined by the city code. As of Tuesday police had no leads, Bauer said.
ASPEN – Pitkin County Commissioner Michael Owsley will be next to chair the board, succeeding Commissioner Rachel Richards at the helm. The transition will occur at the board’s Jan. 11 meeting.
Commissioners don’t elect their leadership but take turns in a rotation. Commissioner Jack Hatfield will become vice chairman, succeeding Owsley in that role. In 2013, when Hatfield would become chairman, he will be off the board. His post is up for election in the fall, but term limits prevent him from seeking another term.
The county likely will shuffle the rotation at that point so a newly elected commissioner does not become chairperson.
EAGLE, Colo. – The Eagle County Sheriff’s Office is asking the coroner to determine the cause of a 33-year-old inmate’s death.
The inmate was found unresponsive in his cell Monday afternoon. The man’s identity is being withheld until relatives can be notified.
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Despite the rules and regulations put in place to keep one another safe, the Aspen Saturday Market still exudes a community spirit and respectful energy among those who are patronizing it and those who are working it.