DURANGO, Colo. (AP) — A judge on Monday delayed the trial of a man accused of killing his 13-year-old son in southwest Colorado nearly a decade ago after members of his defense team reported experiencing symptoms of the coronavirus.
Judge Jeffrey Wilson declared a mistrial in Mark Redwine's trial after a week of jury selection in the case, despite the district attorney's concern that the defense might be using the virus scare to delay his prosecution. Redwine is charged with second-degree murder in the death of his son Dylan, who disappeared during a court-ordered Thanksgiving visit in 2012.
Defense attorney Justin Bogan told Wilson that one person on the team tested negative for the virus but the other members were still awaiting their test results. He said they will have to quarantine for 10 to 14 days under state and federal guidelines, preventing them from participating in the trial.
District Attorney Christian Champagne told Wilson that Redwine was captured on tape discussing the bid for a postponement in a recorded jail telephone call, The Gazette reported. He also said that members of the defense may not be following quarantine guidelines, citing a report that Redwine's other lawyer was seen outside his house emptying a car with another person and not wearing masks.
In his order, Wilson said that even if the allegations are true, he had no choice but to delay the trial to make sure Redwine has effective legal representation during his trial.
Last week, Wilson temporarily stopped jury selection after he experienced some symptoms of the virus that later went away, pending the results of a second coronavirus test. On Monday, he announced that he had tested negative again before turning to the defense's motion for a mistrial.
Dylan Redwine’s mother, Elaine Hall, asked Wilson to allow the trial to continue.
“I beg of you judge, keep this trial on track,” said Hall, saying Dylan’s family has been “victimized over and over again.”
Redwine's lawyers previously sought to delay the trial until after the pandemic, arguing that it would be too unsafe to have so many witnesses, jurors and attorneys gathered together.
Dylan Redwine’s remains were not found until 2013 and 2015. Redwine was arrested in 2017 and there have been many previous delays in his case.