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Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

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January 24, 2013
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GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado - The driver of a truck that smashed into a tree in the 900 block of Grand Avenue on Tuesday morning blamed the accident on a bottle rolling off the truck's dashboard, said Glenwood Springs Police Lt. Bill Kimminau.

The driver, Jason Ellis, 19, of New Castle, told police that as he turned right onto southbound Grand Avenue from 9th Street, a bottle perched on the dashboard rolled toward the steering wheel, got stuck and prevented him from straightening the vehicle. Still stuck in a right-turn position, the truck veered off the street and smashed into a tree.

A photograph of the accident appeared on the front page of the Post Independent on Jan. 23.

The truck did not hit any other vehicles nor the Bank of Colorado building, which stands at that corner. Kimminau said Ellis was not injured, and alcohol was not a factor in the accident.

Police cited Ellis for careless driving, and he will be liable for damages to the tree.

"The moral of the story is don't have stuff on the dash that can fall and interfere with your driving," Kimminau said.

DENVER - An Indiana man who was making arrangements online last year to have sex with a mom and her teenage daughters in Garfield County was sentenced Tuesday to 34 years and four months in prison by U.S. District Court Judge R. Brooke Jackson in Denver.

Steven Raines, 35, was caught in an Internet sting by the U.S. Homeland Security Investigations agency.

A female agent posing as a mother with two daughters under the age of 16 reportedly chatted with Raines online for three months before he decided to take the trip to meet with her.

Raines, of Fort Wayne, Ind., drove from his home in June 2012, and was arrested in Garfield County in a joint operation of the HSI and the Garfield County Sheriff's Office, according to a statement by U.S. Attorney John Walsh.

He pleaded guilty in October to distribution of child pornography and to attempted coercion and enticement to have sex with a child.

RIFLE, Colorado - The Garfield School District Re-2 board on Tuesday accepted the resignation of Coal Ridge High School Principal David Morgan, effective at the end of the current school year.

Morgan is in his third year as principal at the eight-year-old Peach Valley school. He is only the school's second principal since it opened in 2005, following on the heels of former principal Jeannie Humble's retirement in 2010.

Morgan was previously an assistant principal at Sand Creek High School in Colorado Springs, and was a social studies teacher at that school prior to that.

Re-2 administrators will begin the search for a new Coal Ridge principal this spring.

CARBONDALE, Colorado - The board of trustees on Tuesday unanimously agreed to contribute $75,000 to its energy efficiency consultants, Clean Energy Economy for the Region (CLEER) and the Community Office of Resource Efficiency (CORE) for use in the coming year on Carbondale-specific projects.

The money is to serve as matching funds for a separate grant from Garfield County to the two groups. It is on top of the town's $25,000 annual membership fee paid to each of the two organizations, for their work to reduce energy consumption in government and private buildings.

The trustees also gave final approval to the 2013 Comprehensive Plan, which has been in the works for more than a year.

Town Planner Janet Buck said the next step in the process of revising the town's development review criteria will be a rewrite of the zoning codes.

It's Personal, a benefit event for Boarding for Breast Cancer, is set for 8 tonight at the Caribou Club in Aspen. The event will include appearances by snowboarders Elena Hight, who won silver last year in the Winter X Games SuperPipe competition and participated in the 2006 and 2010 Olympics, and Kaitlyn Farrington, who took silver in the SuperPipe at the 2011 X Games.

It's Personal will also feature a performance by the Los Angeles country-rock band honeyhoney, as well as a silent auction; beverages from New Belgium Brewery, Montanya Rum and Big B's Organic Juices; snacks; and a chance to win prizes.

Boarding for Breast Cancer, or B4BC, is a nonprofit foundation that provides education on the prevention and early detection of breast cancer. For further information, go to b4bc.org.


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The Post Independent Updated Jan 24, 2013 12:32AM Published Jan 24, 2013 12:30AM Copyright 2013 The Post Independent. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.