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Durango Demons dominate national mountain bike races in Winter ParkFour teens win titles in first-ever competition for high school students15362048From left, Maggie Holcomb, Bailey Cioppa, Ruth Holcomb and Ivan Sippy wearing the national championship jerseys they won in their individual races in Winter Park.The Durango Demons dominated the inaugural High School Mountain Bike National Championships, bringing home four individual titles as well as the D2 team championship. The results mean that Durango High School holds the first ever high school mountain bike national title.The inaugural championships were held July 12-14 in Winter Park, in conjunction with the USA Cycling National Championships the prior week. While high school mountain bike racing has been exploding in popularity, this is the first year there has been a National Championship event for the student athletes.“This inaugural event in Winter Park was a great step forward, and I firmly believe it will grow exponentially in the next few years as it will attract more riders than the normal National Championships,” said Gaige Sippy, who helped bring the Colorado High School Mountain Bike State Championships to Durango in 2018 and 2019.The four individual titles were earned by sophomore Maggie Holcomb, juniors Bailey Cioppa and Ivan Sippy, and senior Ruth Holcomb.The racers also saw success in the non-high school championship races. Ruth Holcomb raced to victory in both the cross country and short track cross country races in the junior 17-18 category, while Maggie Holcomb won the short track and placed second in the junior 15-16 cross country race. Sippy came home with a pair of second-place finishes in the events, and Cioppa finished in third in both events.0VideoYouTube480360“It started off dumping rain, ‘Mr. Perfectly Fine’ by Taylor Swift was playing so it was all good,” Ruth Holcomb said in a news release from USA Cycling. “We had a great time. I went a little harder than I would have liked on the first hill and that's definitely my fault. And then I just kind of rode pretty clean down the hills. Then the next lap, it was all good, but honestly, the best part was the Taylor Swift the whole time, and being out with my best friends.”The trip to nationals was a breakout performance from Ivan Sippy, who came up through the ranks of the Durango Devo program and now rides for the Durango-based Segment 28 team.“So proud of this kid today,” Sippy’s coach, Rotem Ishay, said in a social media post. “His performance, confidence and UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) points have been on a linear improvement this year. As his coach and team leader, I want to express my gratitude to the real people who shaped this kid not only to ride bikes really fast but also as a compassionate and genuine good person.”All four Demon athletes have seen previous success this spring and summer, including podium performances in USA Cycling Pro XCT races in Utah and Montana. Ruth Holcomb also raced to a fifth-place finish in the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic pro women’s road race behind winner Erin Huck, who is set to represent Team USA at the Tokyo Olympic Games mountain bike race next week.The Demons’ titles are in good company with strong results from other Durango-based athletes. Riley Amos swept the Under-23 men’s category, winning both the short track and cross country events. Fort Lewis College rider Savilia Blunk won the women’s Under-23 cross country race and the elite women’s short track event. And Stephan Davoust, an alum of both Durango Devo and FLC, raced to a pair of second-place finishes in the elite men’s category.The elder Sippy, who also serves as the director of the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic, hopes that the inaugural event will boost high school cycling throughout the country as well as locally.“From a local standpoint, the Durango kids were great ambassadors, and they really shined a light on how great the Durango cycling culture is,” he said. “We had many parents approach us about their kids coming to Durango for a visit and looking at FLC as a college option for their students.”Colorado’s high school mountain bike season is in the fall, and the State Championship race will be held in Durango, Oct. 23-24, at Durango Mesa Park.
Four teens win titles in first-ever competition for high school students
Will child tax credit expansion be made permanent? Bennet thinks soColorado Democrat unsure how long it might take to get payments extended25001665BennetU.S. Sen. Michael Bennet said Monday that he’s confident the one-year expansion of the federal Child Tax Credit will be made permanent. But the Colorado Democrat conceded that he’s not sure when that will happen.“The question is going to be how long will that take and how much fighting will there be,” he said during a virtual Colorado Sun event.Payments began last week under the expansion, which was part of the American Rescue Plan, the massive coronavirus aid bill passed by congressional Democrats in March. Bennet has been pushing for the expanded credit for years and made it a key pillar of his unsuccessful 2020 presidential campaign.0VideoYouTube480360Parents of children up to age 17 will receive between $3,000 and $3,600 in monthly installments under the policy change if they are a single filer making less than $112,500 or joint filers making less than $150,000. The credit decreases by $50 for every $1,000 in income parents make over that threshold.The White House has floated extending the credit for four more years, through the 2025 tax year, as part of a $3.5 trillion billion budget bill Democrats are planning to push through the reconciliation process so they can avoid the 60-vote filibuster threshold in the Senate. Democrats have 50 seats in the chamber, which gives them a majority thanks to the tie-breaking vote of Vice President Kamala Harris.But Bennet said the expansion through 2025 is not a given.“It’s too early to tell whether that’s where it’s going to land,” he said. “From my vantage point, it is a matter of just trying to get it extended as long as we can.”No Republican in Congress voted for the American Rescue Plan, and recently members of the GOP have become outspoken critics of the tax-credit expansion.“No work required. Just free money on top of America’s existing safety net,” Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida recently wrote. “It’s all part of a pattern of President Biden spending recklessly on a liberal policy wish list, at risk to the economy.”But Bennet pointed to Utah Sen. Mitt Romney’s support of a similar Child Tax Credit expansion as proof that there could be GOP support for the change.“I think over time, what you’re going to see is that Republicans in Washington are going to come around and support this,” he said. “The reason I believe it will be permanent is that it is enormously popular with American people, and I think it will become even more that way. We’re going to fight very hard to get it done.” Bennet defended the expanded tax credit against claims that it represents gluttonous government spending and that it doesn’t benefit people who don’t have children.Bennet argued that slashing childhood poverty in half, as one study said the policy change would do, and preventing the related socioeconomic effects is essentially priceless compared with the expansion’s $110 billion cost.“The poorest population in America are children,” he said. “Childhood poverty costs our country $1 trillion a year. I think all of us, as Americans, have a reason to not want childhood poverty to be a pertinent feature of our economy or a pertinent feature of our democracy and I think that our children ... should have a reasonable expectation that they are going to be born in a country that’s got childhood poverty rates that are more closely coupled to our economic competitors.”Bennet said his staff members are working with about 100 organizations in Colorado to find people who could benefit from the expanded tax credit and help them access the benefit, especially those who do not file taxes with the IRS.Those who don’t file taxes can visit the IRS’ website to check their eligibility or sign up.The most secure way to receive a payment is through a bank account, said Wendy Ferrell, executive director of Denver Asset Building Coalition, a nonpartisan nonprofit. Ferrell and her team can help set up a bank account for free or at a low cost to help people access the benefit.People can get assistance through Ferrell’s organization at www.denverabc.org.The Colorado Sun is a reader-supported, nonpartisan news organization dedicated to covering Colorado issues. To learn more, go to coloradosun.com.
Colorado Democrat unsure how long it might take to get payments extended
Mark Redwine guilty of killing his sonJury verdicts are handed to Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, before he reads them, announcing that Mark Redwine is guilty of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11051600Mark Redwine shows no emotion as Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, reads guilty verdicts Friday at the La Plata County Courthouse. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10071600Mark Redwine shows no emotion as Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, reads guilty verdicts Friday at the La Plata County Courthouse. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11761600Rob Robertson, a close family friend to Elaine Hall, becomes emotional in the courtroom on Friday after Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11521600Friends of Elaine Hall become emotional in the courtroom Friday after Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son Dylan Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10671600Family and friends of Elaine Hall gather to hear the verdict on Mark Redwine, who was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald9291600A nearly full courtroom before the verdict of Mark Redwine, who was convicted Friday of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald9731600Family and friends of Elaine Hall gather in the hallway Friday after Mark Redwine was found guilty of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10191600Ryan Nava, a childhood friend of Dylan Redwine’s, tears up Friday as he talks about Dylan outside the La Plata County Courthouse in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1349950Anne Cook, left, a friend of Elaine Hall, hugs Kaitlyn Miller, cousin of Dylan Redwine, after the verdict of Mark Redwine on Friday. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1099950Tonya Goldbricht, with the La Plata County Sheriff’s Office, hugs Elaine Hall, mother of Dylan Redwine, outside the courtroom Friday after Mark Redwine was found guilty of murdering his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11941600Family and friends of Elaine Hall, center, gather in the hallway outside the courtroom Friday after Mark Redwine was found guilty of killing his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10971600Elaine Hall and her husband, Mike Hall, after Mark Redwine was found guilty of killing 13-year-old Dylan Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald988950Rob Robertson, a close family friend to Elaine Hall, becomes emotional in the courtroom after Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son Dylan Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1118950Elaine Hall and her son Cory Redwine talk about the trial and Dylan Redwine after Mark Redwine was found guilty of murdering 13-year-old Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11441600Cory Redwine spoke to reporters Friday after his father, Mark Redwine, was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his brother, Dylan, 13. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald13001300Cory Redwine gets a hug after his father, Mark Redwine, was found guilty of killing Cory’s younger brother, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11671600
Jury finds Mark Redwine guilty of killing his sonDylan disappeared during visit to father’s house in 201216001176Mark Redwine shows no emotion Friday at the La Plata County Courthouse as Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, reads the jury’s verdict of guilty on two counts, second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Jurors on Friday found Mark Redwine guilty of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death, bringing an end to a five-week trial and nine-year investigation into the disappearance of his 13-year-old son, Dylan.A packed courtroom at the La Plata County Courthouse erupted with gasps Friday as the verdict was read by 6th Judicial District Chief Judge Jeffrey Wilson. The decision came after about six hours of jury deliberations.Redwine, wearing a green tie, black shirt and dark pants, showed no emotion. He stood with both hands clasped in front of him, and sat calmly after the verdicts were read.0VideoYouTube480360The 12-person jury sat through a five-week trial in which dozens of witnesses testified and hundreds of exhibits were presented as evidence.The jury heard about six hours of closing arguments before going into deliberations about 3:30 p.m. Thursday. The court announced jurors had reached a verdict shortly before 2 p.m. Friday.“This has been an extremely difficult case for everybody involved,” Wilson told the court before announcing the verdict. Wilson also warned those in the courtroom to “behave” as the decision was read.16001067Friends of Eliane Hall become emotional in the courtroom after Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son Dylan Redwine on Friday during the trial for Mark Redwine in Durango. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Redwine’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for Oct. 8. He faces up to 48 years in prison. He is being held in the La Plata County Jail without bail.Prosecutors said Redwine killed his son in a fit of rage on Nov. 18, 2012, after the boy confronted his father about photos showing his father in women’s lingerie while eating what appeared to be feces from a diaper.Cory Redwine, Dylan’s brother, testified that Dylan “lost all respect” for his father when the two found the pictures during a 2011 Midwest trip.15421160Dylan RedwineDefense lawyers said Dylan was alive the morning of Nov. 19, when his father made a trip into town to do a work-related activity and to visit his attorney. He returned home to find Dylan missing, a bowl of cereal on the table and the television turned to Nickelodeon.They suggested harm may have befallen Dylan by a stranger or wildlife in the rugged backcountry north of Vallecito Reservoir.Prosecutors emphasized during closing arguments that Dylan was “scared” to visit his father for Thanksgiving. Elaine Hall, Dylan’s mother, had just won a contentious custody battle months before that allowed her to move to Colorado Springs. Divorce proceedings between Hall and Redwine lasted from 2005 to 2009 with ongoing custody disputes.16001097Family and friends of Elaine Hall, center, gather in the hallway after Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death. Redwine faces up to 48 years in prison. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Law enforcement and family testified that Redwine appeared “laid-back” and displayed “odd” behavior when Dylan went missing and put little effort into finding his son.Public defender Justin Bogan argued that Redwine didn’t have the time or knowledge of anatomy to dispose of his son and get to work in Durango the next morning.Some of Dylan Redwine’s remains were found in June 2013 near his father’s home. Hikers found his skull in 2015.“I figured he was safe because he was with his dad, and I was devastated that no one knew where my son was,” Hall told jurors in June.The family went on the “Dr. Phil” show in February 2013 before Dylan’s remains were found. Hall confronted Redwine on the show and demanded answers about their son’s disappearance and was concerned he hurt Dylan.“When you’re mad at somebody, your main focus is to get even or get back at them and hurt them,” Hall told Redwine on the show. “That’s how your mind works.”Redwine agreed to take a polygraph test on the show, but as the test was getting set up, Redwine declined to take the test.Hall filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Redwine in June 2015, which was dismissed based on statute of limitations. Months later, Redwine was deemed a “person of interest” in the case.Redwine was indicted in 2017 in connection with the disappearance of his son because of blood found in the home belonging to Dylan. The trial was delayed several times as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and after one of Redwine’s attorneys was arrested in 2019 on domestic violence charges, which were later dismissed.Before the verdict was given, jurors requested the transcript of FBI Agent John Grusing’s testimony and the agent’s report, but transcripts are typically not allowed back with the jury. The prosecution and defense opposed providing the transcripts, and Wilson agreed.Less than a half hour later, jurors announced they had reached a verdict.Kaela Roeder is an intern for The Durango Herald and The Journal in Cortez and a 2021 graduate of American University in Washington, D.C.Jury verdicts are handed to Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, before he reads them, announcing that Mark Redwine is guilty of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11051600Mark Redwine shows no emotion as Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, reads guilty verdicts Friday at the La Plata County Courthouse. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10071600Mark Redwine shows no emotion as Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, reads guilty verdicts Friday at the La Plata County Courthouse. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11761600Rob Robertson, a close family friend to Elaine Hall, becomes emotional in the courtroom on Friday after Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11521600Friends of Elaine Hall become emotional in the courtroom Friday after Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son Dylan Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10671600Family and friends of Elaine Hall gather to hear the verdict on Mark Redwine, who was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald9291600A nearly full courtroom before the verdict of Mark Redwine, who was convicted Friday of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald9731600Family and friends of Elaine Hall gather in the hallway Friday after Mark Redwine was found guilty of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10191600Ryan Nava, a childhood friend of Dylan Redwine’s, tears up Friday as he talks about Dylan outside the La Plata County Courthouse in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1349950Anne Cook, left, a friend of Elaine Hall, hugs Kaitlyn Miller, cousin of Dylan Redwine, after the verdict of Mark Redwine on Friday. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1099950Tonya Goldbricht, with the La Plata County Sheriff’s Office, hugs Elaine Hall, mother of Dylan Redwine, outside the courtroom Friday after Mark Redwine was found guilty of murdering his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11941600Family and friends of Elaine Hall, center, gather in the hallway outside the courtroom Friday after Mark Redwine was found guilty of killing his son, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10971600Elaine Hall and her husband, Mike Hall, after Mark Redwine was found guilty of killing 13-year-old Dylan Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald988950Rob Robertson, a close family friend to Elaine Hall, becomes emotional in the courtroom after Mark Redwine was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son Dylan Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1118950Elaine Hall and her son Cory Redwine talk about the trial and Dylan Redwine after Mark Redwine was found guilty of murdering 13-year-old Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11441600Cory Redwine spoke to reporters Friday after his father, Mark Redwine, was convicted of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his brother, Dylan, 13. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald13001300Cory Redwine gets a hug after his father, Mark Redwine, was found guilty of killing Cory’s younger brother, Dylan. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11671600
Dylan disappeared during visit to father’s house in 2012
Mark Redwine trial closing argumentsElaine Hall, mother of Dylan Redwine, wears a "Justice for Dylan" wristband Thursday during closing arguments in the trial for Mark Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11431600Cory Redwine, brother of Dylan Redwine, is comforted by his wife during closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10401600Prosecutor Michael Dougherty makes his closing argument Thursday in 6th Judicial District Court in Durango during the trial for Mark Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11831600Public defender Justin Bogan finishes his closing argument Thursday in Durango. His client, Mark Redwine, right, and fellow public defender John Moran listen to the remarks. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10791574Dylan Redwine and his father Mark Redwine were seen on video surveillance Nov. 18, 2012, in the Durango Walmart. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald917950Cory Redwine, brother to Dylan Redwine, leaves the courtroom Thursday during a break in closing arguments at the La Plata County Courthouse. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald13071300Mike Hall comforts his wife Elaine Hall, mother of Dylan Redwine, during closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald8551600Pictures of Dylan Redwine shown Thursday during closing arguments in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1158950Mark Redwine enters the courtroom Thursday during closing arguments. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald13771300Mike Hall, stepfather to Dylan Redwine, wipes away tears during closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1263950Prosecutor Michael Dougherty showed jurors Dylan Redwine’s fishing pole Thursday during closing arguments in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1386950The courtroom stands as they wait for jurors during closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10391600Public defender Justin Bogan makes his closing argument Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald9411600Elaine Hall, center, leaves the courtroom during a break in closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11861600Prosecutor Michael Dougherty makes his closing argument Thursday in Durango during the trial for Mark Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11411600Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, listens to closing arguments Thursday. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 13471600
Jury begins deliberations after closing arguments in Redwine caseProsecutors ask jurors to use common sense; defense team focuses on reasonable doubt15741079Public defender Justin Bogan finishes his closing argument Thursday in Durango with his client, Mark Redwine, to his right and fellow public defender John Moran to his left. Public defenders said jurors may not agree with how Redwine behaved after his son disappeared, but he’s not guilty of murder. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Prosecutors asked jurors to rely on common sense and life experiences in convicting Mark Redwine of killing his 13-year-old son, while defense lawyers urged jurors to acquit the defendant based on reasonable doubt.Dylan was “scared” to travel to Vallecito on a court-ordered visit to his father’s house in November 2012 because of rifts in the relationship and an unspoken frustration about sordid photos Dylan found showing his father in women's lingerie while eating what appeared to be feces from a diaper, Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty told jurors Thursday. A confrontation caused Redwine to kill his son, prosecutors say.The defense argues there is not enough physical evidence to prove Redwine killed his son. Public defender Justin Bogan said Redwine didn’t have the time or knowledge of anatomy to dispose of his son and get to work in Durango early the next morning.Jurors began deliberations about 3:30 p.m. Thursday. Before closing arguments, 6th Judicial District Chief Judge Jeffrey Wilson announced that a juror was excused from the case because of comments the person made about Redwine’s guilt. It was the second juror to be dismissed, but only 12 jurors were needed, and the trial started with 16 jurors, including four alternates.16112211Dylan RedwineDylan Redwine was in the stages of breaking off his relationship with his father, something other family members had done, when Redwine killed him, Dougherty said.“This relationship was severing,” he told jurors. “It was splicing and it was cutting and it was coming to an end because the defendant’s words and his deeds had pushed this loving young boy to a point where Dylan no longer wanted to have any contact with the defendant, and the only reason he had contact with the defendant was because the court ordered him to do so,” Dougherty said.At its core, Dougherty said it is a simple and tragic case: Who was the last person seen with Dylan? Who was with Dylan the moment he sent his last text message?16001183Prosecutor Michael Dougherty said the relationship between Mark Redwine and his son, Dylan, had been severed. The father killed his son and disposed of the body, Dougherty said in closing arguments Thursday in Durango. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)“A damaged and deteriorating relationship that turns deadly on Nov. 18, 2012,” Dougherty told jurors. “And despite the defendant’s best efforts to avoid responsibility and accountability, we are here today, and justice is about to come.”Dylan told friends and family he didn’t want to visit his father over the Thanksgiving break in Vallecito. But he was ordered to do so as part of a custody agreement. His mother, Elaine Hall, contacted her attorney in an attempt to get Dylan out of it.“That relationship was coming to an end,” Dougherty said. “And for the defendant, this was incredibly frustrating.”0VideoYouTube480360Mark Redwine, in a dark blue suit and a bright yellow shirt, listened attentively and stoically as both Dougherty and Bogan, delivered closing arguments.Hall, watching in the spectators benches, wiped away tears as Dougherty finished his closing argument.The prosecutor told jurors: “On Nov. 18, 2012, Elaine Hall experienced a parent’s worst nightmare. The worst nightmare a parent can have. When you send a text at 10:09 as Elaine did on the night of Nov. 18: ‘How’s it going son, you OK?’ She’s been waiting nine years for a response. She’s been waiting for nine years for a response because this guy killed her son,” he said as he pointed to Mark Redwine.He added: “This is the response she gets now: No, your son is not OK. Mark Redwine killed him and should be held fully responsible, fully accountable.”Dylan endured blunt force trauma and sharp force injuries to the head, Dougherty said. Redwine dumped the body in the rugged backcountry northeast of Vallecito Reservoir to cover his tracks, he said.The boy’s skull was found about 5 miles from the dump site. Redwine likely wanted to further hide the skull because it showed the most evidence of foul play, Dougherty told jurors.Dylan’s out-of-character halted use of social media and unanswered text messages beginning the night of Nov. 18 suggests the boy was killed that evening, Dougherty said.“Because of what the defendant did, this world will never know Dylan Redwine beyond that day,” Dougherty said. “We'll never know the impact that he would have had on this world today, his high school years, college, a future family of his own. All those things were robbed.”Defense attorneys recognized the strained relationship between Dylan and his father but told jurors that doesn’t add up to homicide. Dylan likely went on a walk early Nov. 19 and was attacked by a wild animal, Bogan said.“You want your son in your life, you want a relationship with them,” Bogan said. “You don't kill them hours after they arrive to come to visit.”Bogan pointed to the lack of hard evidence in the case. There are still several unknowns, and that shouldn’t be taken lightly, Bogan said.0VideoYouTube480360There is no evidence of cleanup, no evidence of a physical fight and minuscule blood evidence at Redwine’s home, he said. Cadaver dogs signaling to the odor of human remains at the house is not reliable enough, either, Bogan said.Before evidence was found, Bogan said investigators were “trying to catch” Redwine by setting up cameras, tracking his car and giving scientists police reports.“We’ve got a biased perception of evidence here,” Bogan told jurors.But Dougherty argued the case was investigated and mulled over for years.“This is no rush to judgment,” Dougherty said.Bogan said sordid pictures of Mark Redwine dressed in woman’s underwear eating feces out of a diaper were introduced to misdirect the jury. He told jurors the photos serve more to breed hatred toward the defendant rather than serving as a motive for the boy’s death, as prosecutors claim.“The prosecution likes these pictures a lot more than they like the tangible and scientific evidence in this case,” Bogan told the jurors. “They like those pictures more than they like the fact that there’s uncontested damage by animals of the remains. The marks on the cranium are consistent with animal damage. They like those pictures better than the fact that the DNA evidence is contradictory and underwhelming.”Bogan said jurors should view the pictures only for the sole purpose of determining whether they support the prosecution’s thesis of the case, not to unfairly taint Mark Redwine as a bad person.“Do not get washed downstream by the photos,” he told jurors. “Do not get washed downstream. Say: ‘Well, a person who engaged in this sort of conduct is probably a freak, a freaky bad person. And because they are kind of a freaky bad person, they probably would be the sort of person to kill their youngest son if they fought for him, to get custody of him, after a really bad divorce for five years.’ You can’t do that. You look at them like: Does this motive make sense. Does it help me understand what they’re saying motive is?”13001377Mark Redwine enters the courtroom after a break in closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death.Dougherty described the difference between first-degree and second-degree murder. First-degree murder, he said, is when someone acts intentionally, like when a couple have an altercation and one waits for the other to come home and shoots that person with a handgun. Second-degree murder, he said, occurs when someone acts knowingly, like when a couple are arguing in the kitchen and one person becomes upset with the other and hits her on the head with a frying pan.He asked jurors to recall testimony from Brandon Redwine, Mark’s son from a previous marriage, who said the day Dylan’s remains were found, Mark commented about how law enforcement won’t know whether blunt force trauma was involved without the skull. The statement was so out of left field that Brandon contacted law enforcement that day, Dougherty said.Elaine Hall, mother of Dylan Redwine, wears a "Justice for Dylan" wristband Thursday during closing arguments in the trial for Mark Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11431600Cory Redwine, brother of Dylan Redwine, is comforted by his wife during closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10401600Prosecutor Michael Dougherty makes his closing argument Thursday in 6th Judicial District Court in Durango during the trial for Mark Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11831600Public defender Justin Bogan finishes his closing argument Thursday in Durango. His client, Mark Redwine, right, and fellow public defender John Moran listen to the remarks. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10791574Dylan Redwine and his father Mark Redwine were seen on video surveillance Nov. 18, 2012, in the Durango Walmart. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald917950Cory Redwine, brother to Dylan Redwine, leaves the courtroom Thursday during a break in closing arguments at the La Plata County Courthouse. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald13071300Mike Hall comforts his wife Elaine Hall, mother of Dylan Redwine, during closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald8551600Pictures of Dylan Redwine shown Thursday during closing arguments in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1158950Mark Redwine enters the courtroom Thursday during closing arguments. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald13771300Mike Hall, stepfather to Dylan Redwine, wipes away tears during closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1263950Prosecutor Michael Dougherty showed jurors Dylan Redwine’s fishing pole Thursday during closing arguments in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald1386950The courtroom stands as they wait for jurors during closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald10391600Public defender Justin Bogan makes his closing argument Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald9411600Elaine Hall, center, leaves the courtroom during a break in closing arguments Thursday in Durango. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11861600Prosecutor Michael Dougherty makes his closing argument Thursday in Durango during the trial for Mark Redwine. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald11411600Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, listens to closing arguments Thursday. Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 13471600The prosecution noted Redwine didn’t mourn as a typical father would. Redwine appeared laid back when Dylan vanished and threw away pictures of his son in August 2016. While Dylan was still missing, Redwine transferred the money in Dylan’s bank account to his personal account, Dougherty said.“He got rid of everything that could tie Dylan to him, tie the body to him – except the debit card. The debit card could potentially have value for him,” Dougherty said.Outside the courtroom, most family members declined to comment about the trial.The only observation came from Cory Redwine, who said, “It’s been difficult to go through all this again.”Herald Staff Writers Shane Benjamin and Patrick Armijo contributed to this report. Kaela Roeder is an intern for The Durango Herald and The Journal in Cortez and a 2021 graduate of American University in Washington, D.C.16001186Elaine Hall, center, leaves the courtroom during a break in closing arguments Thursday in Durango. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)
Prosecutors ask jurors to use common sense; defense team focuses on reasonable doubt
Defense team rests case; Mark Redwine declines to testify‘We're in the homestretch,’ judge says13871165Mark Redwine listens to Richard Eikelenboom, a forensic scientist, as he testifies Tuesday at Redwine’s homicide trial in Durango. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)The defense team for Mark Redwine rested its case Wednesday after presenting several days of testimony from expert witnesses, co-workers, investigators and former acquaintances.Redwine, who is accused of killing his son, Dylan, also announced he will not take the witness stand in his own defense.“I have decided I will not testify,” Redwine told the court in Durango after a short conversation with his attorneys.0VideoYouTube480360Chief District Judge Jeffrey Wilson advised Redwine of his rights and will advise jurors that Redwine’s decision not to testify cannot be used against him and does not infer guilt.Rebuttal witnesses put on by prosecutors concluded Wednesday and closing arguments are expected to begin as soon as Thursday morning after instructions are read to the jury.“We're in the homestretch,” Wilson announced.Earlier Wednesday, a previous coworker and an old friend of Redwine’s, Freddy Cracium, testified that Dylan was Redwine’s “pride and joy.”Cracium told jurors he saw Redwine looking at pictures of Dylan playing baseball on his phone after work one day in 2012, and he appeared to be “so happy.”After Dylan disappeared in November 2012, Redwine changed, Cracium said.“I see a man that I didn't know anymore,” he said. “He didn't look the same. He didn’t talk to me ... he was scared.”Redwine gave Cracium flyers identifying Dylan as a missing person, and Cracium said he placed two on his own car and handed out others to friends. But over time, the two lost touch.During cross-examination by the prosecution, it was learned that Carcium never met Dylan and had never been to Redwine’s home in Vallecito. Carcium almost rented Redwine’s home and purchased one of his trucks, but backed out because of vandalism on the property and harassment Redwine was experiencing.On Tuesday, a local postal worker in the area testified that she may have seen Dylan with another boy the day he went missing. But during rebuttal testimony, it was revealed the mail carrier, Angela Lee, likely saw Jaquelin George and a boy from the neighborhood who resembled Dylan.George testified Wednesday that Crawford and Dylan looked very similar, and George was perceived as a tomboy when she was a child.Kaela Roeder is an intern for The Durango Herald and The Journal in Cortez and a 2021 graduate of American University in Washington, D.C.
‘We're in the homestretch,’ judge says
Little evidence of significant bloodletting in Redwine’s living room, defense expert saysMail carrier unsure if she saw Dylan morning of disappearance1280720The inside of Mark Redwine's living room as photographed by investigators after Dylan Redwine's disappearance. A defense expert testified Tuesday that there was no sign of a significant bloodletting event in the living room. (Courtesy of 6th Judicial District Court)Mark Redwine’s living room did not show evidence of a major bloodletting event after chemical testing and analysis at the home, a forensic scientist told jurors Tuesday.Richard Eikelenboom said the often-used chemical agent luminol detects traces of blood at crime scenes not perceivable to the naked eye, including after a suspect attempts to clean the scene. The chemical reacts to certain compounds in substances, like iron in blood, and creates a blue glow.But he told the jury luminol is not an entirely reliable tool because other substances, like bleach, can give off fluorescence.“I think every crime scene you go to, you will find false positives,” Eikelenboom said.16001118Richard Eikelenboom, a forensic scientist, looks over evidence as he testifies Tuesday during the trial for Mark Redwine in Durango. Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)But prosecutor Fred Johnson pointed out that further tests were completed to confirm the presence of blood at Redwine’s Vallecito home, and each sample came back positive.Traces of blood were found in several locations of the living room, including on a couch cushion, love seat cushion, floor underneath a rug, rug in front of a loveseat and a coffee table. But most of those locations created small points of illumination using luminol, some as small as a dime. Those could have been the result of getting a small cut, flossing or picking a scab, Eikelenboom said.0VideoYouTube480360The traces do not suggest a major bloodletting event, such as what might be expected after blunt force trauma, Eikelenboom said.Earlier testimony from expert witnesses concluded Redwine’s son, Dylan Redwine, endured blunt force trauma based on fractures on the boy’s skull at or near the time of death.Karen Alexander, Redwine’s former girlfriend, told jurors Monday that Dylan accidentally cut his finger while cooking dinner over Labor Day weekend in 2011. Some blood dripped in the living room, Alexander said, where trace elements were found.13871165Mark Redwine listens to Richard Eikelenboom, a forensic scientist, as he testifies Tuesday during his trial at the La Plata County Courthouse. Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his 13-year-old son. Prosecutors say Redwine killed his son in a fit of rage after Dylan confronted him about sordid photos.Defense attorneys say it is possible Dylan was attacked and killed by wildlife in the rugged mountains surrounding the father’s home north of Vallecito Reservoir, 21 miles northeast of Durango.Witness testimony and closing arguments are expected to conclude this week, and jurors could begin deliberations as soon as Thursday or Friday.16001052Mark Redwine, left, and his defense team listen to Richard Eikelenboom, a forensic scientist, testify Tuesday in Durango. Mark Redwine is suspected of second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Eikelenboom showed the court images of previous crime scenes he has analyzed, including a case of homicide by blunt force trauma in which large bloodstains were found after using luminol at the scene.But Eikelenboom acknowledged it is possible a violent event occurred in Redwine’s living room, even though the scene did not appear to be bloody.“Some violence, you don’t have much bloodletting,” Eikelenboom said.If cleanup of blood is attempted, it is nearly impossible to remove all traces, he said.Cleanup also differs by the surface. Smooth surfaces, like a hard floor or table, are easier to clean. But other surfaces like carpet are more difficult, he said.Small illuminations can show up even in a home where no murder or significant bloodletting occurred, he said. The application of luminol can also disturb evidence, like blood, because of the soluble nature of both elements, Eikelenboom said.0VideoYouTube480360During cross-examination, Johnson noted Eikelenboom has little experience in fresh crime scenes in the last 15 years.Eikelenboom and his wife, Selma Eikelenboom, own Independent Forensic Services, a private laboratory specializing in bloodstain analysis, crime scene reconstruction and DNA. The lab previously worked on prominent cases, including those involving Casey Anthony, Aaron Hernandez and JonBenet Ramsey.16001092Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, listens to prosecutor Fred Johnson cross examine Richard Eikelenboom, a forensic scientist, on Tuesday at the La Plata County Courthouse. Mark Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Johnson quizzed Eikelenboom about certain details of the Redwine case, including when Dylan went missing, when his remains were found and how often Dylan visited his father in Vallecito. Eikelenboom was unable to answer any of the questions, among others.“So you have an opinion as to whether his blood may be in the living room naturally, inadvertently, and you don't know how many days he's been in that house?” Johnson asked.“It would be relevant, I think,” Eikelenboom responded.16001165Angela Lee, with the U.S. Postal Service, said Tuesday she isn’t sure if she saw Dylan Redwine walking the morning of Nov. 19, 2012, the day the 13-year-old boy was reported missing. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Did postal worker see Dylan?Angela Lee, a longtime postal worker in the Vallecito area, testified Tuesday she saw two boys walking near Vallecito Reservoir about 10 a.m. Nov. 19 – the day Dylan went missing.She said she was about 50% sure it was Dylan, but at other times during her testimony she said she couldn’t be sure at all.“The boy kind of reminded me of Dylan,” Lee said. “I couldn't be, you know, for sure, because I just barely glanced at them.”0VideoYouTube480360If Lee did see Dylan, it would cast doubt on the prosecution’s timeline, suggesting the boy was alive after Redwine left the house to run errands. It would also suggest Dylan met up with a friend to go somewhere on his own volition.Lee said she saw Dylan sporadically on her route when the boy was in town visiting.Lee’s coworker heard her talking about the possible sighting and notified law enforcement. Lee didn’t call law enforcement herself because she was unsure if one of the boys was really Dylan, she said.“I was never sure, ever,” Lee said.Kaela Roeder is an intern for The Durango Herald and The Journal in Cortez and a 2021 graduate of American University in Washington, D.C.
Mail carrier unsure if she saw Dylan morning of disappearance
Redwine’s former girlfriend: ‘I don't believe he did it’Animal behaviorist questions reliability of cadaver dogs16001061Mark Redwine stands as the jury leaves the courtroom on Friday during his homicide trial in Durango. Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse causing the death of his son, Dylan. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Mark Redwine’s former girlfriend told jurors Monday that he was an “attentive” parent to his son Dylan in the year leading up to the 13-year-old’s disappearance.“He loved Dylan very much,” Karen Alexander testified. “Talked about him all the time.”Redwine and Alexander met when Redwine was working a foreman job for United Pipeline Systems in her hometown of Bakersfield, California. She visited Redwine at his Vallecito home during Labor Day weekend in 2011 along with Dylan. The three spent time going to the mall, hiking and practicing shooting guns, Alexander said.Her testimony comes at the beginning of the fourth week of the trial in Durango, where Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of Dylan. The boy was reported missing Nov. 19, 2012, and the first remains of the boy were found in June 2013 in a rugged, mountainous area northeast of Redwine’s home near Vallecito Reservoir.Redwine has pleaded not guilty.The relationship between Alexander and Redwine lasted about six months and the two have not been romantically involved since then, she testified. But they still texted and were in contact with each other when Dylan disappeared and when his remains were found, she said. Eventually, they stopped talking altogether, she said.Redwine was “clearly upset” in June 2013 when Dylan’s remains were discovered, Alexander said. But he isn’t the type to show a lot of outward emotion, she told jurors.Alexander joined Redwine on the “Dr. Phil” show in May 2013 where Elaine Hall, Dylan’s mother, accused Redwine of playing a part in Dylan’s disappearance. Alexander went on the show to advocate for Redwine’s innocence, she said.“I don't believe he did it,” she testified.0VideoYouTube480360When cooking dinner one night over Labor Day weekend in 2011, Dylan cut his finger by accident, Alexander said. Dylan was bleeding, and Redwine used a paper towel and a bandage to stop the bleeding.Some blood dripped onto the floor in the living room, Alexander said. DNA experts previously testified about blood found in the living room, which the defense previously claimed could be the result of the normal activities of a 13-year-old boy.During cross-examination, it was revealed Alexander did not mention the bleeding until this week. She was interviewed by the FBI in 2012 and 2013 and mentioned other details of her trip, she said.“I didn't know it was that important, I really didn't,” Alexander said.Earlier in the day, animal behaviorist James Ha returned to the witness stand, albeit via video link, to finish his testimony from Friday in which he argued cadaver dogs are prone to false positives.Ha, a defense witness, faced challenges from prosecutors about his level of expertise in human remains detection dogs. 6th Judicial District Judge Jeffrey Wilson ultimately granted Ha expert witness status in zoology, animal sensing and animal behavior.Ha, who is a research professor at the University of Washington, told jurors Monday morning that detections by cadaver dogs are “not reliable” if no additional evidence of actual remains is found. He explained even highly trained detection dogs are susceptible to error, and issues can arise because of the weather, hunger, age and level of exhaustion.“We can’t get inside their brain; we don't know what they're thinking,” Ha said.3168VideoYouTube480360Because of this, Ha suspects several false positives of human remains were made by Molly, Carren Gummin’s cadaver dog, in the Redwine investigation.Gummin and Molly traveled to Durango in August 2013 and February 2014 to assist in the investigation of Dylan’s death. Gummin worked as a police officer in Madison, Wisconsin, for nearly 30 years before retiring and founded her business Canine Search Solutions in 2005, a network of cadaver and trailing dogs that help law enforcement find missing people.Molly alerted to several areas inside and outside Redwine’s home, his truck and his clothing. Molly also detected an odor of human remains at 12 locations near Middle Mountain Road. But remains were found in none of the exact areas, which suggests a false positive, Ha said.Dylan’s shoe, sock and other items were found just north of the service gate that blocks Middle Mountain Road, in the general area where Molly alerted to the odor of human remains.Dogs can give false positives as part of a desire to please their handlers, Ha said. During Molly’s search of Redwine’s home, investigators waited at the threshold of the door as Molly searched, which could have influenced her to indicate odor that wasn’t present, Ha said.In addition, if a nail clipping, strand of hair or blood residue were found in an area, that would register as an odor of human remains to the dog, despite whether an actual cadaver or remains were present, he said.“It’s all decomposition, and they're trained on a variety of different kinds of decomposition,” Ha testified.0VideoYouTube480360Ha said physical evidence leaves chemical compounds for up to 48 hours after being removed. Molly searched Redwine’s residence, truck and clothing months after Dylan’s disappearance.But on cross-examination by the prosecution, Ha could not cite a professional source validating that no residual odors can be detected after 48 hours of human remains being removed.“There are no studies on residual odor, this is my educated opinion,” Ha said.Ha did not observe Gummin’s work on the Redwine case and is not aware of Molly’s training, he testified.Ha acknowledged Gummin and Molly were a “higher-quality team” than he realized when first submitting his opinion for the court in June 2019, and he agreed detection dogs are a useful tool in investigations.Redwine appeared ‘normal’ morning of son’s disappearanceRichard Swayze, an equipment manager with United Pipeline Systems, said he spoke with Redwine on Nov. 19, the day his child went missing, at the company’s Durango office. Redwine looked sober and “normal” Swayze said. The two spoke for about an hour early that morning.“He was happier than I’d ever seen him,” Swayze said.The interaction was “strange,” Swayze testified. They had never spoken for that extended period of time and did not know each other outside of work.Previously, Sean Borris, a project manager at United Pipeline Systems, said Redwine looked “haggard” and “out of sorts” on the same day.Kaela Roeder is an intern for The Durango Herald and The Journal in Cortez and a 2021 graduate of American University in Washington, D.C.
Animal behaviorist questions reliability of cadaver dogs
Defense expert offers differing views about skull wounds in Redwine caseProsecutors challenge two witnesses on level of expertise, reliability16001245Bruce Anderson, a forensic anthropologist, uses a cast model of a skull to describe how animals can leave marks while scavenging as he testifies Friday during the trial for Mark Redwine, who is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan Redwine. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)On the first day of direct questioning by the defense team in the trial for Mark Redwine, a forensic anthropologist presented a radically different assessment of Dylan Redwine’s remains than previous expert witnesses.Contrary to past testimony brought forward by the prosecution, forensic anthropologist Bruce Anderson said a puncture mark on the zygomatic arch, which forms the cheek area of the skull, could have been caused by a wild animal close to the time of death or months after death.Anderson also said the skull fracture previously deemed a result of blunt force trauma could have happened “days or weeks” after death. A coyote could have caused the damage, as well, Anderson told jurors.The testimony comes after prosecutors presented nearly three weeks of testimony from family, expert witnesses and wildlife specialists.Forensic anthropologist Diane France and forensic pathologist Robert Kurtzman previously said the mark on the zygomatic arch was most likely caused by a sharp tool, not from animal activity.Previous experts told jurors that animal marks appear as U-shaped on bones, while tools or sharp objects appear as V-shaped. Anderson told the court that’s not always the case. For example, the sharp incisors of a coyote or a claw can create a V-shape on the bone, he said.“There’s going to be some gray area,” Anderson testified. The marks on Dylan’s skull appeared blunt, not sharp, he said.But Anderson said he couldn’t determine, without a doubt, that a tool didn’t cause the puncture mark on the zygomatic arch.16001155Bruce Anderson, a forensic anthropologist, testifies about the marks on Dylan Redwine’s skull Friday during the trial for Mark Redwine. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)Redwine is charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death of his son, Dylan.Defense attorneys argue it’s possible Redwine’s 13-year-old son was attacked and killed by a bear or mountain lion in the mountains surrounding the father’s home north of Vallecito Reservoir, 21 miles northeast of Durango.Redwine has pleaded not guilty.16001110Mark Redwine listens to Bruce Anderson, a forensic anthropologist, as he testifies Friday during Redwine’s homicide trial. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)In the cross-examination, Anderson said he used an eight-power magnifying glass to assess the remains. But usually, in his lab, he uses a 40-power magnifying glass or a 100-power dissection microscope. Anderson told jurors the magnification used was “enough.”Some of Dylan’s finger and toe bones were found in animal feces, which suggests a coyote consumed the remains, Anderson said.Some of Dylan’s remains and belongings were found in June 2013, months after the boy first went missing in November 2012. Dylan’s skull was later found in November 2015 by off-trail hikers more than 5 miles from the site of the initial remains.Anderson testified the longer a body remains in the wilderness, the more likely it is for remains to become separated.“The more likely critters will get to it, and the more likely different bones will be separated from one another,” he told the court.But Anderson’s experience in forensic anthropology is in desert regions, not mountainous and rugged terrain. When asked by the prosecution if he is familiar with the area, Anderson replied: “I am not.”When asked by the prosecution if Dylan’s shoe and sock were consistent with animal scavenging, Anderson refused to answer.“I'm not gonna do that, counselor; I'm not an expert in this,” he said.0VideoYouTube480360After a back-and-forth between the defense, prosecution and 6th Judicial District Judge Jeffrey Wilson, Anderson was told to answer the question. He told the court the sock appeared intact with no evidence of animal scavenging.Jerry Apker, a now-retired carnivore biologist with Colorado Parks and Wildlife, told jurors that bears, mountain lions and coyotes don’t move food far from where it was initially found. This is because energy conservation is key, he said.“You never know when you're going to get your next meal when you're a wild animal,” Apker testified.Apker said “it’s possible” for a coyote to carry bones and skeletal remains over a mile, but it’s not typical behavior.“Is it normal for coyotes to carry a bone a long distance? No, it’s not really normal. But is it possible? Certainly is possible, but I can’t give you probabilities or anything like that,” he said.Before Anderson and Apker took the stand, the defense team hit a roadblock Friday morning when attempting to call a DNA expert witness to testify.The defense planned to call Phillip Danielson, a previous consultant to National Medical Services, but faced resistance from the prosecution because of issues during a 2015 court hearing in Texas that deemed Danielson didn’t practice DNA analysis in accordance with accepted practices.The hearing, which focused on inaccurate testing of DNA and misinterpretation of results, The hearing, which was focused on inaccurate testing of DNA and misinterpretation of results in a sexual assault case in Washington, D.C., “significantly undermined” Danielson’s credibility, according to the report by the Texas Forensic Science Commission.Danielson did not cite peer-reviewed journals or texts in the 2015 proceedings and inaccurately presented DNA concepts.“I am not happy to have this just before he testifies, because it is unfair to the court,” Judge Wilson said. “It’s just inviting error; it’s something that should have been litigated beforehand.”16001129Jeffrey R. Wilson, chief judge of the 6th Judicial District, asks a public defender to hold his question to himself as Bruce Anderson, a forensic anthropologist, testifies Friday during the trial for Mark Redwine. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)The defense faced more opposition when animal behaviorist James Ha with the University of Washington took the stand. The prosecution says reports and background on Ha’s expertise were never received.Public Defender John Moran attempted to qualify Ha as an expert in zoology, animal behavior, animal sensing and human remains detection, which was objected to by the prosecution.The central issue was Ha’s unclear background in dog handling, which prosecutor Fred Johnson says he was unaware of until Moran began questioning.“All of these things that are coming up are new, and I asked in advance so Mr. Moran could be organized and could provide those materials so we weren’t in the situation we’re in right now,” Johnson told Wilson. “Instead, he chose a different path.”Mark Redwine stands as the jury leaves the courtroom Friday during his trial in Durango. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)10611600Public defender Justin Bogan asks Bruce Anderson, a forensic anthropologist, a question as Anderson testifies Friday during the trial for Mark Redwine. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)11341600Mark Redwine stands as the jury enters the courtroom Friday during his trial in Durango. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)11901600Bruce Anderson, a forensic anthropologist, uses a cast skull unrelated to the Mark Redwine case to describe how animals can leave marks when they are scavenging. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)11511600Mark Redwine looks over a document Friday during his trial in Durango. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)11191600Johnson questioned Ha about his experience related to dog handling and objected to Ha’s testimony as an expert witness in the field. Wilson allowed Ha to testify about animal behavior and the technicalities behind human remains detection, narcotics and trailing.Ha has never been a dog handler, handled a dog in a search and rescue scenario, trained a human remains detection dog, certified a dog in detection or conducted research on dog handling. But Ha “trained the trainers,” or dog handlers themselves, in the underlying biology of dogs.He also helps reduce the rates of “false-positive” responses from dogs, which is when dogs signify a smell of remains when there is no odor or presence of a body. This can happen as a result of subconscious cueing to the dog, Ha said.0VideoYouTube480360Scent lineup, or comparing scents in a small location, is difficult, Ha said. On Thursday, dog handler Rae Randolph testified about an experiment with her dog, Sayla, in 2012 using a scent lineup on items belonging to Dylan.At the time, some law-enforcement officials believed a pillowcase provided by Redwine didn’t have Dylan’s scent because several dogs had no luck picking up a trail of where the boy may have gone.“The scent lineup is a very different cognitive test,” Ha said. “The scent lineup requires a very different kind of training.”Randolph set up evidence in a grid-like fashion, and when Sayla was given Dylan’s scent from a separate, known object, she was able to pick up Dylan’s scent and identify additional known items. When Sayla was given just the pillowcase, she was unable to identify items with Dylan’s scent.Kaela Roeder is an intern for The Durango Herald and The Journal in Cortez and a 2021 graduate of American University in Washington, D.C.
Prosecutors challenge two witnesses on level of expertise, reliability