Pueblo prosecutor in court for DUI
August 2, 2006
The attorney for a Pueblo prosecutor charged with DUI questioned a veteran Aspen police officer’s credibility during a county court hearing Tuesday.
Chip McCrory, representing Karl Tameler, said Officer Dan Glidden “was looking for every possible reason” to arrest his client. McCrory was trying to persuade Judge Erin Fernandez-Ely to toss the case because Glidden did not have probable cause to arrest Tameler. Fernandez-Ely said she would rule on the matter by Oct. 3.
Police stopped Tameler, chief trial prosecutor in the 10th Judicial District, early on the morning of Sept. 19, 2005. He allegedly was going 53 mph in the 25 mph construction zone on the Maroon Creek bridge.
Tameler was in town for a prosecution conference in Snowmass Village. He showed Glidden his prosecution badge when he was first pulled over, according to the arrest report. At the jail, he asked to call former district attorney Colleen Truden and repeatedly asked Glidden about the officer’s conduct, the report says.
McCrory said speeding in that particular area is normal, as is trying to convince a police officer that he is making a mistake. Tameler maintains that he wasn’t drunk and passed roadside tests.
Tameler was steady on his feet and had “very good motor skills,” McCrory said.
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During his testimony last week, Glidden “was saying anything to help his case,” McCrory said. He said the officer testified that Tameler’s car was one-third over the center line but that the police report says nothing about weaving. “Credibility is a huge issue in this case,” McCrory said.
But deputy district attorney Katherine Steers recounted Glidden’s testimony differently. The 17-year officer said he pulled Tameler over after he coasted through a stop sign, sped and weaved a bit out of his lane on the bridge.
During the traffic stop, Glidden said he noticed Tameler had bloodshot eyes and a strong smell of alcohol. He also spoke deliberately.
“You don’t need to speak with slow, distinct speech unless you’re trying to overcompensate for something,” Steers said.
The defendant has experience in roadside sobriety tests but “still couldn’t cheat” the maneuvers, she said, noting that Tameler had trouble keeping his head steady at one point. He also swayed slightly at one point, although Glidden allowed that Tameler performed pretty well during the maneuvers.
But the defendant repeatedly asked Glidden if he was comfortable with how the arrest had been handled. After this “went on and on,” Steers said, Glidden finally remarked he “did not like attorneys and did not trust him in connection with this case.”
McCrory has seized on this, contending that Tameler was treated differently because of Glidden’s attitude.
But Steers said the officer’s conduct was meticulous and his comment was merely Glidden being “honest to a fault.”
Chad Abraham’s e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org