Sunday, November 7, 2010

Vail/Eagle County Justice is an Embarrassment

Bike rant.

Despite the highly-touted snow and terrain at Vail, I've purposely boycotted (OK, closer/cheaper options also help) actually skiing at Vail since I'm clearly
Front Range riff-raff.

However, just when I was thinking about maaayyyybeee giving it a shot this season, I read this story from CARD about why the DA Mark Hurlbert dropped felony charges (abruptly and without warning) against a driver who
* veered off the road
* hit a cyclist (the cyclist is a surgeon, by no means riff-raff)
* "left [him] for dead" (victim's words, as he was hemorrhaging from the brain -- luckily somebody else stopped)
* kept driving through Avon, then stopped at Pizza Hut to make a phone call...
* ask for his 2010 Mercedes to be towed for a bumper and side-mirror repair!

The best (worst) part? Since Erzinger is a director in private wealth management, “dedicated to ultra high net worth individuals, their families and foundations,” a felony charge would have to be reported within 30 days.

So, the DA decides to drop it to a misdemeanor:
“Felony convictions have some pretty serious job implications for someone in Mr. Erzinger's profession, and that entered into it,” Hurlbert said. “When you're talking about restitution, you don't want to take away his ability to pay.”

Emphasis mine. Even though a felony would theoretically affect anyone's "job implications" and "ability to pay", there are special laws and rules if you are incredibly wealthy. This DA just had the audacity to say it out loud.

Will Vail/Eagle County residents put up with it?


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