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Deputies arrest several for underage drinking at Four Mile


Just before midnight Saturday evening, sheriff’s deputies responding to tips from several people contacted seven young adults and three juveniles at a large bonfire in the Four Mile Recreation Area north of Buena Vista.  A red flag warning issued by the National Weather Service and no-burn fire restrictions were in effect at the time, and Chaffee County firefighters were called to extinguish the blaze. 

A large amount of liquor and beer was present at the site and deputies, assisted by a Buena Vista PD officer, also discovered small amounts of marijuana. 

Two adults were arrested and charged with three counts each of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, a felony; two counts of providing alcohol to a person under 21, a misdemeanor; and violation of Chaffee County’s fire restrictions, a petty offense.  They were identified as Colin MacNab, 21; and David Erickson, 28, both of Buena Vista.  They were lodged at the Chaffee County Detention Center on bonds of $3,000 each.

Summonses were issued to two 20-year-old adults on charges of underage possession of alcohol and violation of the County fire ordinance.  They were Deanna Hence, Buena Vista; and Emily Kanagy, Evergreen, Colorado.  Ms. Hence was also cited for possession of less than two ounces of marijuana.

Issued summonses for violation of the fire ordinance were Staci Bolt, 18; Michael Strode, 19; and Matthew Poplin, 19, all from Buena Vista.  Poplin was also cited for possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of less than two ounces of marijuana.

Three 16-year-old juveniles, a female and two males from the Buena Vista area, were issued summonses for underage possession of alcohol and violation of the County fire ordinance.  They were released to their parents.   

Deputies learned later that the party was just getting started when they arrived.  Up to fifty persons were expected to attend, including students from Buena Vista and South Park high schools.

According to officials of the US Forest Service, the location of the arrests has been a popular site for partiers recently.  Over the past week the service completed three cleanup missions and extinguished three bonfires left burning by partiers.  Forest Service workers collected roughly thirty pallets and a dumpster full of trash from this one site over just the past week.

Citizen input from community forums held late last year clearly indicated that the community has a strong interest in preventing underage access to alcohol and drugs and desires to see robust enforcement and prosecution of offenders.  Further, with the approaching wildfire season area residents demand enforcement to prevent acts that could endanger forest lands and residences.  The sheriff’s office and the US Forest Service will collaborate this summer on preventative patrols and enforcement within the Four Mile Recreation Area to focus on these concerns.