Blotter, June 18, 2014

Craig man’s death reported

A Craig man died of a heart attack Saturday while riding a horse in a remote part of Rio Blanco County.

The Rio Blanco County Sheriff’s Office said Dwight Michael Warak, 66, suffered the heart attack while five miles up the Pyramid Peak trail 52 miles east of Meeker near Baldy Mountain.

A caller to emergency dispatchers late that afternoon said he noticed his friend had dropped back on the trail and rode back to him, finding him lying on the trail and not breathing.

A helicopter was summoned from Vernal, Utah, and flew sheriff’s personnel from the trailhead to retrieve Warak’s body, and an autopsy was performed Sunday.

Fire cause undetermined


Investigators were unable to determine the cause of a fire that destroyed a residence 45 miles southwest of Meeker Thursday.

A Colorado Bureau of Investigation arson team from Denver and a Rio Blanco County sheriff’s investigator completed their investigation over the weekend and determined that the fire began in a corner of the home. But while numerous possible ignition sources were identified, none could be confirmed as the cause, thanks in part to the amount of fire and water damage.

Undersheriff Michael Joos said the house has old electrical wiring, had gasoline stored inside, and had other possible ignition sources such as an ashtray filled with cigarette butts.

The residence is at 23404 Rio Blanco County Road 5 in the Piceance Creek area. It is owned by the Meeker School District, along with other structures on the property including a former schoolhouse known as the Rock School.

Authorities found the home’s occupant, Mark J. Abolt, 62, barefoot and hiding in an irrigation ditch seven hours after the fire was reported. Joos said Abolt appears to have some mental issues that could explain his actions that night and have made it difficult to interview him about the fire.

Abolt was expected to be released Monday from Pioneers Medical Center in Meeker, where he was treated for hypothermia.


According to the Grand Junction Police Department:

■ Israel Chavez is accused of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession of cocaine, careless driving and other traffic-related offenses.

■ Tyler McCain, 24, was issued a summons for careless driving and driving while under the influence after he was involved in a one-vehicle collision on 28 1/4 Road near Grand Falls Drive on June 13.

■ Wayne Sheer, 52, was arrested and released on a summons for disorderly house when contacted at 829 Santa Clara Ave. on June 14.

■ Nick Langkilde, 36, was issued a summons for unnecessary and loud noise after being contacted at 2999 Debra St. on June 15.

■ Someone caused more than $1,000 in damage to a victim’s vehicle at 648 Market St. on June 14.

■ Robert Hickok, 25, is accused of criminal mischief and domestic violence in the 700 block of Ouray Avenue on June 15.

■ Frank Hessel, 53, is accused of DUI after he was involved in a crash on Riverside Parkway on June 15.

■ A thief took items valued at less than $300 from a vehicle near the 300 block of Ouray Avenue on June 15.

■ Someone unlawfully used debit card information from a business in the 500 block of Bogart Lane and used it to make fraudulent transactions on June 15. The amount of the loss is less than $5,000.

■ Someone stole a vehicle valued at more than $20,000 on June 15.

■ Brandee Eighmy, 21, is accused of shoplifting at Walmart, 2545 Rimrock Ave. on June 15, causing the business a loss of less than $50.


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