Steamboat briefs for Oct. 25

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— Fourth demolition party defendant pleads not guilty

The fourth and final man accused of badly damaging a Steamboat Springs home during an alleged demolition party in April pleaded not guilty to felony charges during a hearing in Routt County District Court on Wednesday.

Samuel Walsh of Illinois pleaded not guilty to the Class 4 felony criminal mischief charge he is facing for his alleged involvement in the party at his former home on Walton Creek Road.

Walsh, along with former roommates Phillip Hafner, 21, of Oregon; Raymond Jay, 22, of Arizona; and Michael Gatrell, 21, of Ohio, have pleaded innocent to the charges they are facing. Hafner, Jay and Gatrell are facing a steeper Class 3 felony criminal mischief charge in addition to the Class 4 charge. The men allegedly caused more than $15,000 worth of damage to the home.

Chief Judge Michael O'Hara scheduled Walsh's five-day trial to coincide with Jay's trial, which begins Dec. 10 despite objections from Steamboat Springs Attorney Larry Combs, who is representing Walsh and Jay.

Combs argued that because the men are facing separate charges and the DA's Office likely will use a "complicity theory" in one of the cases and not the other that the trials should be held separately.

James Brown bridge closed until Friday

The James Brown Soul Center of the Universe Bridge on the west side of Steamboat Springs will be closed throughout the week because of the installation of a new sanitary sewer interceptor.

Karen Custer of the city's public works department said the bridge is scheduled to reopen by the end of the day Friday. Custer said the new interceptor system will increase capacity and is part of the city's capital improvements plan.

Starting Nov. 1, work on the interceptor system will move toward the Stock Bridge Transit Center and force the closure of the Yampa River Core Trail west of the transit center for two weeks. For more information, call public works at 871-8226.

Yampa Arts & Craft Fair registration under way

The 27th annual Yampa Arts & Craft Fair is accepting applications for crafters and artists. This large craft fair is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 17 at South Routt Elementary School in Yampa.

Applications are due today. To receive an application or for questions, call Nita Naugle at 638-0452.

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