Lake Christine Fire case sent to District Court; suspects Miller, Marcus due back Jan. 23
November 20, 2018
EAGLE — The pair accused of sparking the Lake Christine Fire will take their case to District Court.
Richard Miller and Allison Marcus will appear before District Court Judge Paul Dunkelman on Jan. 23.
The case was sent from county court to district court during a brief hearing Tuesday morning. Stan Garnett, Marcus' attorney, said they need the time to collect the rest of the evidence — called "discovery" — to be presented against his client and Miller during trial. No trial date has been set yet.
Miller and Marcus, both 23, each face three charges of fourth-degree arson, a Class 4 felony, and setting fire to woods or prairie, a Class 6 felony.
Craig Miller, Richard's father, isn't facing charges directly related to the fire. Instead, he was arrested for his alleged conduct when Eagle County deputies received an anonymous tip July 14 that his son and Marcus were at his home in Missouri Heights.
District Attorney Bruce Brown told The Aspen Times in October that his office has established procedure against arranging plea bargains with people who allegedly violate fire restrictions.
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Miller and Marcus are free on a $7,500 bond each.
Marcus and Miller were allegedly at the shooting range near Basalt firing tracer rounds shortly before 6 p.m. on July 3. The public range was open despite fire restrictions banning everything from charcoal grill fires to outdoor smoking. However, firing tracer ammunition is always banned, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife, which owns and operates the shooting range.
Marcus told the authorities that she "caused it and was sorry. Marcus said she called into 911 to report the fire," the affidavit says.
Marcus said she had been shooting a rifle, while Miller said he was firing a shotgun. Miller initially said he was not shooting incendiary rounds, but as the deputy sorted through the suspects' firearms and ammunition, Miller admitted to firing tracer rounds, the affidavit states.
Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
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