Ryan Summerlin July 9, 2014
Just a little mistake
An Eagle Police officer patrolling around town at 1:30 a.m. watched as an SUV suspiciously stopped along Third Street.
The officer noted he was parked with his patrol car facing eastbound Grand Avenue next to the Third Street intersection. As he watched in his driver’s side mirror, the officer saw the SUV driver approach the intersection, stop for approximately five seconds, pull forward approximately two feet and stop again for approximately five seconds. The officer noted there was no eastbound or westbound traffic on Grand Ave. at the time.
After the driver turned on to Grand Avenue, the officer noted that his driver side tail light was not working. He pulled onto Grand Avene and the officer observed that as the SUV traveled westbound, the driver crossed over the double yellow line approximately two feet into the eastbound lane and abruptly swerved back into the westbound lane. The officer then initiated a traffic stop.
When he approached the driver to explain the reason for the stop, the man noted “It was just a little mistake, no worries.” The officer requested the driver’s license, vehicle registration and proof of insurance. The driver provided a Utah license but could not produce the other documentation, saying they were in his other vehicle.
The officer noted the man’s speech was slightly slurred and that he had blood-shot water eyes. He could also smell a strong alcohol odor coming from the vehicle. The man said he had consumed “a couple of beers” earlier.
When he contacted dispatch, the officer learned the man’s driver’s license was suspended for failure to comply, a non-extraditable warrant. The officer turned over the investigation to another officer working for the Gore Range DUI Task Force in a grant-funded program. The driver was unable to perform roadside maneuvers and he was taken into custody and transported to Vail Valley Medical Center for a blood test.
A passenger inside the vehicle told the officer that he had three dogs in the car with him, and he did not have anyone who could come and pick him up. The passenger told police his license was also suspended and he could not drive. The passenger was allowed to park the vehicle and spend the night in the SUV with the three dogs.
Where there’s smoke …
Eagle Police were called to an Eagle neighborhood on a report of a structure fire.
When officers arrived, they saw a small fire in a planer sitting on top of a wooden railing on the upper deck to the rear of a house. The fire was spreading to some wooden stairs leading to an upper deck area. The Greater Eagle Fire Department doused the blaze with a fire extinguisher.
While the firefighters were at work, the officers knocked on windows and doors at the residence to see if anyone was home. No residents were located. After the fire department reported the blaze was completely extinguished, officers entered the home through an open window, announcing that they were police as they entered. The officers determined the house was empty but they also found more than 30 marijuana plants inside the residence.
Officers were later able to contact the residents to tell them about the deck fire. One of the residents said someone must of accidentally left a lit cigarette unattended in the planter. The officer noted that Eagle Police had to enter the house to determine if there were people inside and if everyone was okay. Then asked about the marijuana plants around the residence.
One of the residents replied that he thought it was legal to have six plants per person inside a home. The office responded that in Eagle, it is only legal to have six marijuana plants total in a residence.
The residents said they were unaware of the town’s marijuana rules and the officer noted they were cooperative during the interview. He offered to contact the town planner so he could have a discussion with the residents to elaborate on Eagle’s marijuana regulations.