Pitkin County judge removes herself from drunken-driving case | AspenTimes.com

Pitkin County judge removes herself from drunken-driving case

ASPEN – Pitkin County Judge Erin Fernandez-Ely filed court papers Wednesday indicating that she has disqualified herself from presiding over the drunken-driving case of a former Glenwood Springs police officer.

Fernandez-Ely became the third judge in the 9th Judicial District to be removed from the case. Previously, judges Paul Metzger in Glenwood Springs and Jonathan Pototsky in Rifle recused themselves, citing a conflict of interest and sending the case to Pitkin County.

But with Fernandez-Ely now removed, it is unclear who will preside over the case against Paul Pedersen, 39, of Silt.

Garfield County sheriff’s deputies stopped Pedersen outside Silt on Jan. 15. Pedersen also has been charged with prohibited use of weapons in addition to having an open container of alcohol and failing to drive in a single lane.

He resigned from the Glenwood Springs Police Department on Feb. 29. Pedersen also was a member of the Two Rivers Drug Enforcement Team and worked on assignment with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, including its investigation that resulted in the 2011 breakup of a cocaine ring that spanned between Los Angeles and Aspen.

His attorney, Lawson Wills, of Snowmass Village, could not be reached for comment Thursday.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Aspen and Snowmass Village make the Aspen Times’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User