News in brief

Aspen Times staff report
Aspen, CO, Colorado

BASALT – The Eagle County Sheriff’s Office intends to reach a critical decision today in an investigation into possible criminal activity by Basalt High School coach and teacher Lauren Redfern, according to spokeswoman Jessie Mosher.

There is an active criminal investigation involving Redfern, but no criminal charge has been filed, Mosher said. A detective with the Sheriff’s Office was investigating the case in Basalt on Friday, she said.

“They will know (today) if they’re going to actively pursue criminal charges or not,” Mosher said. She declined to discuss further details of the case because of the investigation. Redfern has never been in custody, Mosher said.

Redfern is a 2004 graduate of Basalt High School, where she was an athletic star. She was hired in 2010 as the head girls basketball coach. She also teaches health class.

The Roaring Fork School District placed Redfern on paid leave last week, according to Superintendent Judy Haptonstall. She refused to disclose the reason for the action, saying it is a personnel matter.

Haptonstall said the school district will wait until the law enforcement investigation concludes before determining whether to take further action with Redfern.

BASALT – The Basalt races for mayor and three council seats have drawn three potential candidates so far.

Current council members Glenn Rappaport and Jacque Whitsitt took out nomination petitions Monday to run for mayor. Former Mayor Rick Stevens took out a candidate nomination petition to run for council.

Rappaport is in the middle of a four-year council term. Whitsitt is nearing the end of her four-year term. Both have served prior stints on the council, but neither has run for mayor before.

Stevens was mayor of Basalt from 1994 to 2004. He made an unsuccessful bid for a council seat in 2008.

Three seats are open on the council – those currently held by Whitsitt, Peter McBride and Katie Schwoerer. McBride and Schwoerer declined to seek re-election.

Candidate petitions must be returned by 5 p.m. March 2. The election is April 3.

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – David Edgar of Basalt, facing eight felony charges over the alleged sale of medical marijuana and cocaine to undercover narcotics agents, is working on a plea bargain with the 9th District Attorney’s office, according to statements made in court on Tuesday.

Edgar, 29, waived his right to a preliminary hearing on Tuesday, according to attorney Adam Tucker, “based on a temporary agreement that the parties came to last Friday.”

A preliminary hearing, in most cases, is held to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to warrant further court proceedings in the case.

Tucker asked that the case be continued to March 27, by which time he predicted a plea deal might eliminate the need for a trial.

Edgar, who operated the Mother Earth medical marijuana dispensary in Carbondale, was arrested Oct. 7, 2011, by agents of the Two Rivers Drug Enforcement Team and the Colorado Department of Revenue.

He is accused of selling medical marijuana without first requiring the buyers to show their state license to buy the product, and of selling cocaine to undercover agents.

He currently is free on bond.

(From the Glenwood Springs Post Independent)