Woman accused of dumping tires at recycle center
A warning to would-be dumpers of trash at Aspen’s recycling center: You’re being watched.
Such was the case for Brooke Silke, 27, of Aspen, who is due in Municipal Court on May 19 to answer charges of littering and theft of services.
Aspen police ticketed Silke on April 28 after a video-surveillance system at the recycling center, located on city property along the edge of Rio Grande Park, allegedly showed her dumping “several old car tires, what appears to be some carpeting, and some clothing,” according to a report from Officer Jeff Fain.
Fain, on April 18, received an email from the city’s Environmental Health Department alerting him that it had video footage, taken earlier that morning, of a woman discarding nonrecyclable items at the recycling center. After reviewing the video, Fain concluded in his report, “I believe she was intentionally trying to hide her actions.” The officer said the woman parked her vehicle between two of the trash bins, which are intended exclusively for recycled items.
Fain later ran the vehicle’s license-plate number and learned that it belonged to Silke. Ten days later, on April 28, Fain said he visited Silke at her residence and she “initially denied knowledge of the incident and stated that her roommate borrows her car frequently. When asked about why there was a blond female driving (Silke is blond) Silke stated that her roommate commonly hangs out with many women,” Fain’s report says.
Fain then played the video for Silke.
“Silke stated that the car in the video was indeed hers, and repeated her story that her roommate borrowed the vehicle,” Fain wrote. “When the woman who strongly resembles her got out of the driver’s seat, Silke stated that it was indeed her. Silke said that she was ‘helping’ her roommate clean out the garage for their house as there was a lot of extra items cluttering the garage.”
Later, Silke told Fain that she believed the carpet and tires were recyclable, “and that is why she left them there,” the report says.
Silke’s residential telephone number is not listed, and Fain could not be reached for comment.
According to Cathleen Treacy, records supervisor for the Aspen Police Department, there have been 15 cases of littering at the recycling center, including two that resulted in citations. Generally speaking, first-time offenders are given warnings, Treacy said. Littering carries a $100 fine in the city of Aspen. Theft of services, which Silke also faces, carries a $250 fine.
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