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Mark Redwine Case: COVID-19 Fears Result in Mistrial for Man Charged in Murder of 13-Year-Old Son

The murder trial of Colorado man Mark Redwine, 58, in the death of Dylan Redwine, 13, ended before it really began, as Sixth Judicial Chief Judge Jeffrey Raymond Wilson declared a mistrial on Monday.

Jury selection had been in progress. The trial schedule had already been up in the air: Judge Wilson said Thursday that he was showing apparent COVID-19 symptoms—namely, problems with his taste and smell. His coronavirus test came back negative, but the case ran pretty much immediately into another pandemic-related problem.

The defense said members of their team was showing symptoms of COVID-19, and the prosecution asserted that one public defender was allegedly seen during the weekend maskless while cleaning a car with another person, according to The Denver Post.

Sixth Judicial District Attorney Christian Champagne suggested the defense was trying to delay the trial on purpose. He said it “certainly undercuts their position” if one of the defense team “claims” symptoms but was not following quarantine.

The public defender in question, John Moran, was described as sputtering.

“Respond to what was happening in front of my house?” he asked. “I’m not sure how to respond to whether or not I was wearing a mask in my yard.”

Wilson ultimately backed off from determining whether anyone was at fault, and simply declared a mistrial:

At the status conference on November 9, 2020, the District Attorney made allegations concerning recent behavior of one of Mr. Redwine’s attorneys and the contents of a telephone call made from the La Plata County Jail. The Court, for the reasons stated on the record and without making any findings as to the veracity of the allegations, finds that even if such allegations are true, the Court has no choice but to grant D-180 and declare a mistrial to ensure that Mr. Redwine has effective assistance of counsel.

A new trial date is scheduled to be discussed on Friday.

Redwine is charged with second-degree and child abuse in Dylan’s death. The child went missing during a court-ordered Thanksgiving visit with his father in 2012, and some of his remains were discovered about eight miles from the defendant’s home the following June. Police said canines found the scent of human remains at the residence, and in the bed of Redwine’s truck. The victim’s blood was also located in several places around the defendant’s home, investigators said.

Dylan’s skull was found in another nearby location in November 1, 2015. The defendant was ultimately indicted in 2017. Champagne has alluded to tension between father and son as the motive for the murder.

Authorities said that Dylan and brother Cory Redwine had seen lurid photos of their father. The victim was going to face defendant Redwine about it, officials said.

“I have seen the photos,” said Cory Redwine, according to Denver 7. “It shows [Mark Redwine] wearing women’s clothes and makeup and a diaper and then eating his feces from the diaper. It was disgusting. We couldn’t believe it.”

[Mugshot via La Plata County Sheriff’s Office]

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