Trial date set in Phillips case in Aspen | AspenTimes.com

Trial date set in Phillips case in Aspen

Wyatt Haupt Jr.The Aspen TimesAspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN An Aspen socialite sought in connection with an alleged murder in Arizona was ordered Tuesday to stand trial in Pitkin County on an unrelated case.Judge Erin Fernandez-Ely set a June 26 jury trial date for Pamela Phillips, who faces one count of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs and one count of unsafe backing of a vehicle.The counts stem from the Aug. 31 arrest of Phillips. Defense attorney Richard Cummins, who is representing Phillips locally, entered a plea of not guilty. Phillips did not attend the hearing.Ely also ordered Phillips to be present for the jury trial, something that does not seem likely given she has failed to appear at previous hearings despite mandatory orders from the judge.Everything is in flux, said Cummins on the status of Phillips, who has been holed up in Switzerland for the past few months.She is wanted on a warrant issued in Arizona for the alleged murder of her ex-husband Gary Triano.He was killed Nov. 1, 1996, when his Lincoln Town Car blew up in the parking lot at the La Paloma Country Club in Tucson. Triano was 52 at the time of his death.Authorities believe that Phillips paid $400,000 to Ronald Young to kill her ex-husband in order to collect on a $2 million life insurance policy. Phillips and Triano were divorced in 1993.Young was arrested Oct. 17 in Yorba Linda, Calif., on charges of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and first-degree murder. The arrest came after he was indicted by a grand jury in Pima County, Ariz.Young pleaded not guilty to those charges Nov. 4 in Pima County Superior Court. Young is suspected of putting inside the car a pipe bomb that killed Triano. He is being held on $5 million bond at a corrections center in Pima County.A judge declined a request from Youngs attorneys last month to lower his bond amount.Phillips, who has a school-age daughter in Switzerland, faces the same charges, the Pima County Sheriffs Office said. She has retained the Geneva-based law firm of Borel & Barbey, according to documents filed in Pitkin County. That move presumably was made to deal with the alleged murder in Arizona and possible extradition proceedings.whaupt@aspentimes.com


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